Dolce and Gabbana Sicilian Themes
Dolce and Gabbana, perhaps one of the best-known fashion brands on the planet, has its roots firmly planted in Italy and Italian culture. The two partners, Domenico Dolce, who hails from Sicily, and Stefano Gabbana have spent decades exploring Sicily for inspiration for their fashion shows. They’ve transformed Sicily’s famous almond blossoms into beautiful print and mosaics from cathedrals across Sicily can be found in many of their religiously-influenced collections. Some of their most famous, Sicily-based inspirations include Castelbuono, the Chinese palace in Palermo, and the Duomo di Catania .
Despite dressing a long line of celebrities, Dolce and Gabbana refuse to forget their roots. With a strong flair for Italian excess, many of their designs feature elaborate prints, embroidery, lace, and colourful flowers. Whether it’s a leather jacket or a tight dress, Dolce and Gabbana proudly showcases Italian heritage and spread Italy’s influence throughout the world.
While Dolce and Gabbana is now a famous brand, its beginnings were far more humble. Domenico Dolce was born in 1958 in Sicily and his future parter, Stefano Gabbana, was born in 1962 in Milan. After meeting in a club in Milan in 1980, the pair formed a firm friendship, sharing a love for unique fashion and design.
Dolce helped Gabbana get a job working for Giorgio Correggiara, where Dolce himself was employed, and the pair spent time learned how to create exquisite fashion designs. In 1982, once Gabbana returned from obligatory military service, the pair left to open their own studio.
It wasn’t until 1985, however, that they debuted in Milan, using their friends and fashion models and featuring other Italian designers. The brand’s success continued to build, and they opened their first store a year later.
They built their collections, and Dolce and Gabbana eventually grew into the company we know today, continuing to spread Sicilian influence throughout the globe. One of Domenico Dolce’s most famous quotes explains his thought process: “We built our fashion around three fundamental concepts: Sicily, tailoring, and tradition. Our dream is to create a style which is timeless.
Dolce and Gabbana’s fourth collection was the first to make a splash in the Italian fashion market. It was a particularly Sicilian-based collection and their advertising campaign drew on the work of Italian Cinema in the 1940s. The collection featured the famous “Sicilian Dress”, named as one of the most important dresses ever designed, and has become the brand’s main touchstone.
In more recent times, Dolce and Gabbana have partnered with celebrities across the world, including Madonna, Missy Elliot, and Beyonce, making costumes to be worn on tour. Thanks to these partnerships, Dolce and Gabbana has become a household name, and increased cultural awareness of Sicily and Milan all over the world.
Most recently, Dolce and Gabbana have branched into NFTs, releasing their first collection in 2021. The NFTs sold for $5.7 million making them one of the brands most successful releases. Refusing to fall behind the times, Dolce and Gabbana continue to work at the forefront of the Italian fashion industry.