Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Dolce & Gabbana

Who makes a dress that is made our of pliable twigs of that of a willows tree? Known for its elegant and extravagant pieces, Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana have created some of the most exquisite pieces in the world, similar to this dress to the right that was seen at V&A exhibit Undressed: A Brief History of Underwear. Dolce and Gabbana was established in 1985 as one of the international groups in the fashion and luxury goods sector.       
            Domenico Dolce was born in small town outside of Sicily in the summer of 1958. His father was a tailor so Dolce's life has always been surrounded by fashion. Dolce used fashion as the medium to express who he was and who is today. After studying fashion and working in his family's small clothing factory, he decided to pursue his career in fashion design. In an interview with Interview magazine, he told Bruce Weber "Design was the way I was able to do the things I was dreaming about. As a designer, I see dreams as my job. It's like being a psychologist. I have to capture was people are feeling and translate that into fashion and even provide what people want before they consciously know they want it."              
             Stefano Gabbana was born in Milan in November of 1962. Gabbana never thought of fashion as a child until he became very interested in designers like Fiorucci, a brand that had brought over the styles of Swinging London and American classics such as t-shirts and jeans to Milan. Inspired to go into advertising, Gabbana studied graphic design to later work on in the field and realize he hated it.
            In 1980, Domenico and Stefano met while working as assistants at an atelier in Milan. 1982 was the year the two formed their partnership and did some freelance designing, meaning they had no set work schedule and were not committed to a particular company. For two years, the two struggled to really establish who they were and the credibility of their dreams. The two were unconventional in how they ran fashions shows. Their favourite was when they held a fashion show in a fast food restaurant and the invites looked like hamburgers. It was these bold gestures that earned them a spot in the "New Talent" fashion shows in Milan of 1985. Less than half a year later, the two had officially launched their first women's collection as Dolce & Gabbana. By 1989, they opened their first boutique in Japan.
            Their style is what made the brand stand out. Everything was a mix of traditional male and female clothing. The two felt that every person has a piece of them that is the opposite sex. It has nothing to do with a person's sexual identity or sexual preferences. They felt that their clothing allowed for people to reach that of their soul and that allowed for a person to feel whole. In the 16th century, heels were designed for men and Dolce & Gabbana felt their company and designs destroyed modern stereotypes. This philosophy is evident in the design of this 19th century inspired hoop skirt piece. They created a piece so elegant yet so modern with raising the hem line and dressing delicate, sheer pieces of black fabric creating what seems to be the most bare resemblance of a dress.
            The two have created a statement in the fashion world. They have successfully conveyed the message that if you like a piece of clothing, rock it. Who cares if you are male, female, it is a dress or a pant suit. If you like it, you can rock it. They have allowed for individuals to confidently dress themselves and that fashion is an everlasting cycle of designs that can be repeated with a modern edge. 


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