Roberto Cavalli RTW Spring/Summer 2017 Milan

by SARAH MOWER

Patchworked references, patchwork itself, long drifty dresses, flares, platforms—they’re all very “in” this season. In Italy, Peter Dundas has always been the most committed advocate of that look: come minimalism, come covered-up, come normcore, he’s always had his head in the hippy ’70s. Stay still long enough and the world will revolve around to where you’re standing. That was, sort of, the case with Dundas’s Spring collection for Roberto Cavalli.

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There’s no contesting the fact that Dundas is a dab-hand at cutting a louche pair of flares (see the mouthwatering apricot silver-embroidered silk velvet pair) and at fitting a tiered, multi-everything dress to make a tall girl look like a toweringly slim reincarnation of what her grandmother might have worn in 1970. This season, Dundas said he’d looked to American textiles like Navajo blankets, as his mother was from the United States, and cross-referenced them with Scandinavia, meaning snow-inspired polka dots and memories of chunky wooden-soled clogs, which he transformed into platform boots.

There’s always a niche for this sort of thing. The striped jackets and skinny flares are in sync with fashion, as are the drifty dresses, fringed blankets, and shawls. Considering all the work involved in these pieces, though, young girls like the ones on the runway aren’t going to be able to afford to buy Cavalli. Probably it’s an older customer who might magpie around this collection when it hits stores.

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