Dolce & Gabbana Gets Regal, Religious for Fall 2013

Call it immaculate conception: This season, designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana found inspiration in, of all places, a centuries-old church.
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Hayley Phelan
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Call it immaculate conception: This season, designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana found inspiration in, of all places, a centuries-old church.
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Call it immaculate conception: This season, designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana found inspiration in, of all places, a centuries-old church.

According to the show notes, the Byzantine-era mosaics from Sicily's Monreale Cathedral provided the starting point for the collection, which was as gilded and rife with religious iconography as they come.

Saints, kings, and angels appeared in a mosaic style print on dresses, tops, and skirts. They were often gilded or surrounded by appliquéd jewels. Other times the prints were more muted--a time-worn fresco. They were delightfully decadent, recalling a time (at least in our imagination) when kings and queens sipped from gold chalices and carried jeweled scepters. The crowns, which topped off a handful of the looks, were a playful finishing touch that drove the point home. We have a feeling they're going to be editorial gold this year.

Tailored, chaste skirt suits, in check or herringbone tweed were the perfect foil to the extravagant gold looks--and provided more wearable, though less exciting, options from the collection. And, because this is Dolce & Gabbana, there was of course lace: In black, white and red, on the duo's expertly tailored signature dresses. Here the designers seemed to be playing with volume: There were flowy A-line skirts, structured bell sleeves and stiff rounded shoulders.

When the runway exploded in cardinal red for the finale--dresses glittering with jewels or frothy with lace, topped with gold crowns--it was hard not to get swept up in Dolce and Gabbana's romantic, yet powerful, fantasy. It was the perfect ending to a decadent, visual feast fit for a queen.

Photos: IMAXtree