When there's any drift toward romance and softness in the air, Alberta Ferretti, Milan's queen of chiffon, is going to catch it one way or the other. This season, the way was quite lovely and not so obvious: Ferretti steered her collection in the direction of Greco-Roman imagery, all goddess drapery, toga-tunics, and mini gladiator skirts.
The show began with a T-shirt dressa slightly asymmetrical cream jersey rectangle with a patch of oxidized crystal jeweling on one shoulder. It was an opening that heralded some good things in the way of subtlety and simplicity. Ferretti's palette, taken from the faded colors of ancient temples and frescoes, included verdigris greens, used to tint beautifully pleated dresses and floor-sweeping draped goddess gowns. The theme even managed to stretch to the house tailoringjackets and coats were vertically pleated to echo Doric columns; shadowy bands of print inspired by Roman friezes edged a chiffon top. The most memorable looks, however, were the dresses that were unembellished, relying totally on draping for their desirability. The best was worn by Lily Donaldson, in cream jersey, which crossed in front and swooped and looped in the back: a quietly stunning entrance- and exit-maker par excellence.