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by on July 11, 2012

Dolce & Gabbana staged their debut Alta Moda couture collection in Sicily before an audience of some 80 couture clients, at least two celebrities, three news outlets and four faintings. 

The design duo dropped a few million lire to fly in some of the world’s richest women from the likes of China, Qatar and Russia to show off the 73 dresses from their new Alta Moda line. Six months in planning, the show went off more or less without a hitch, except for a few fainting spells from the excessive heat — two atelier tailors, a fashion editor and a multi-millionairess, to be specific.

Scarlett Johansson and Stephanie Seymour were among the celebrities in attendance, though snapping any pics of them was completely out of the question. In addition to editors from various Vogues around the world, only three newspapers — two being Italian — were invited to the exclusive presentation — The Daily Telegraph, Le Figaro and Corriere della Serra.

Press was invited under the strict provision that only a few photos from the show be published, since D&G’s customers “do not want to see their dresses in a magazine,” explained Stefano Gabbana. There was also a ban on tweeting.

Steeped in Sicilian culture and history, Dolce & Gabbana’s Alta Moda collection is distinct from the haute couture of Paris and more personal than their main line. ”This is our style. It is not trend, I do not care if it is cool,” Domenico Dolce told The Telegraph. “Prêt-à-porter is different, it is about cool and how many covers will we get this season. Here, we are completely free. So for me this is not work but pleasure.”

While a second Alta Moda presentation is planned for November in Shanghai, the line is going to need to snag some of those fabulously wealthy couture clients in attendance. Interest, it seemed, had been piqued with rumors circulating post-show that orders had already been placed, which doubtlessly delighted the designers.

“When we started out 27 years ago, our dream was to become a maison like Chanel, old Chanel. And now, maybe, this dream is coming true.” [Telegraph]

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Contributed by Lester Brathwaite

I was center square from 1969 to 1978, during which I perfected the art of the zing as well as a crippling cocaine addiction. Bea Arthur was responsible for both. @LesFabian lester dot brathwaite at gmail

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