Born in 1934, Sophia Loren was destined to greatness, becoming a film star at the age of 15 and, soon after, crowning herself as the Italian muse par excellence of generations of men and women, who continue to venerate her after more than 80 years of her life. Never too shy to wear bold accessories, a daring dress with rich patterns, or her staple colored glasses, Sophia Loren has become much more than a famous Italian actress; she is, in many ways, the image of Italian style, of its powerful women, of the colorful beauty of its landscapes, of the sparkling character of its peoples.
No wonder why Dolce & Gabbana inspired their latest Alta Moda collection on this eternal muse…
After introducing the world to the different components of their Italy—one that still prides on the power of the Classical Empire, that venerates its rich and interminable art history, that adores the role of the mother to an almost ritualistic point, and that lives on the exaltation of tradition—they bring to life their own version of the ideal Italian woman, whose body, attitude and, most importantly, Italian-ness, they dress for the enjoyment of the entire world.
Staged in Naples, where Sophia Loren spent the first years of her life, the show was a perfect combination of the carnivalesque streets of the city—where the motorcyclists rushing and men and women happily parading up and down the streets framed by colorful buildings and shadowed by hanging lines of drying clothes are more a reality than a movie scene—with rich embroideries, figurative prints and the lavishness of gold in the designs, in the best style of Dolce & Gabbana.
Sophia Loren, queen of the night, was appropriately sitting on her throne, happily singing to the rhythm of the Italian songs that accompanied the summary of her life recreated in a series of luxurious fashions: from a beauty pageant bodysuit with the title of “Miss Eleganza” (Miss Elegance) and garments decorated with the lavish jewels that Loren herself so often wears to a football outfit inspired on Maradona’s golden years and a “pizza” t-shirt, passing through a few outfits directly recreated from her films, the show was a beautiful ode to her.
But it was also a reaffirmation—probably unnecessary—of the Italianness of Dolce & Gabbana’s fashion. Yes, they dress women from all over the world—including this Colombian/New Yorker writing. But their archetype is purely Italian, with her boldness, her confidence, her style resulting from all the years of lascivious fashions that the Italian peninsula has seen—from the richness of Renaissance silks and gold brocades to the always surprising gowns worn by Anna Dello Russo and even younger Italians like Chiara Ferragni—just like Sophia Loren herself.
Photography via Business of Fashion