With the thrill of Christmas presents now a distant memory, it was with some additional excitement that we received this delivery from Dolce and Gabbana.
The Italian designers have kindly donated an ensemble from their Ready to Wear Autumn/Winter 2013 collection, a bejewelled tunic dress, crown and golden shoes. The V&A sometimes acquires objects for its permanent collection when preparing for an exhibition. New acquisitions refresh and diversify the museum’s established fashion collections.
Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana met in Milan in 1980 and together represent one of the biggest global brands in the fashion industry. This Dolce and Gabbana collection was inspired by the mosaics and frescoes the Cathedral of Monreale in Sicily. Both the crown and tunic dress are heavily adorned with sequins and paste jewels giving them a surprising weightiness. You can see these pieces in person at the forthcoming ‘The Glamour of Italian Fashion 1945-2014’. The tunic and crown will be displayed in the penultimate gallery of the exhibition showcasing Italy’s most luxurious and famous contemporary brands.
The golden ‘caged’ metal stilettos mimic a technique known as ‘filigree’ (twisted and soldered metal threads) to create intricate patterns. These shoes will not feature in the exhibition. Most of the mannequins we use at the V&A have fixings (spigots) through their feet, making it difficult to display most shoes on the figure. However these stunning stilettos will join our permanent collection for visitors to enjoy and study from now onwards.