Mood board: Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana are proud Italians – their clothes have always embodied a sense of national pomp and pride. For the last couple of seasons, their menswear shows have started to the evocative, operatic tune of Cavalleria Rusticana by Italian composer Pietro Mascagni. The mood for A/W 2020 was craftsmanship in a digital age – the invite included detailed commemorative collages full of classic motifs relating to the artisan. Around the space, videos played of bakers, seamstresses, tailors, cobblers, farmers and sculptors at work. They prefaced a tactile collection.
Best in show: ‘Artistic Craftsmanship is the best defence against ugliness,’ the show notes read. ‘Fatti a mano’, ‘Craftsmanship’ and ‘artigianalità’ were writ large over three of the looks. Some of the models walked down the runway wearing workman aprons, carrying tools or wearing worn overalls. The look was cosy, cocooning and comforting. There was less baroque print and sparkle than seasons past. Standout were the hulky knits worn with cord trousers and boots. There were knitted all-in-ones, leviathan shearling coats, cargo pants and distressed sweaters. Impeccably cut suits had extra bite; shearling lapels were added to blazers that tied at the waist or longline dressing gown coats.
Scene setting: Guests were greeted by a set of artisanal tableaux vivants. Four women sat on stools knitting thick wools into cardigans and jumpers – generations of knowledge passing into the weaving. Four men stood making lasts and sculpting leather shoes surrounded by the scent of freshly shaved wood and polish. A crop of tailors worked silently in a tiny set, cutting, basting and stitching pinstripe suiting together. This was sartoria on show. Dolce & Gabanna’s A/W 2020 collection embodied an intimate attitude – it was about doing things by hand. The barber, the weaver, the bread maker, all celebrated. All paid homage.