One thing is sure — the lady is dark, as underlined by the chiaroscuro lighting effect at the Wednesday show that opened Milan Fashion Week for the fall-winter 2012 season.
"This is a modern-day romanticism, a dramatic sensuality, a dark glamour, with subtle games of provocative intellect," creative director Frida Giannini wrote about her latest collection.
The collection mixes military accents with ultra-feminine styles complete with sequins and slits. The basic Gucci silhouette has a tiny waist and straight skirt with uneven hemline, long in back, shorter in front with subtle draping.
On a strictly dark background, Gucci brightens up the look with tapestry textiles, floral prints and embroidery. Colors are never garish but rather dark shades of green, plum and indigo blue.
Velvet and silk or brocades and leather created an opulent look, highlighted by over-the-top feathered creations. Crocodile riding boots and oversized coats were paired with demure velvet skirts and embroidered see-through equestrian pants.
Night wear is dreamy and feminine with long dresses in wrinkled tulle or velvet, embroidered with hand-sewn floral patterns.
The new stirrup bag, roomy as well as classy, has a revisited metallic spur closure. Gucci offers a more structured version of the saddle bag for eveningwear in de rigeur black crocodile. Footwear is either flat and masculine, or slipper-like with a sharp high heel.
The models wore their hair long and pulled back, but sported glasses to give the collection a brainy accent.