Perhaps you remember the doodles that Angelina Jolie’s children did to adorn her Versace wedding gown? Or Mayhem, J.Crew’s 4-year-old designer? Forget millennials—soon we will all be working for toddlers. And Americans are not the only ones possessed by the power of very small people.
Yesterday at Milan Fashion Week, a faction of plump babies with soft knees, pink cheeks, and dangerously tiny toes overtook the runway at Dolce & Gabbana’s fall/winter 2015 show. They were carried in by models—mostly in their arms, though at least one was in utero—and were flanked by a march of little girls in white knee socks and lace dresses.
The label’s ads frequently portray gatherings of glamorous, multigenerational, lace-clad Sicilian families. A new one stars three grandmothers with bejeweled crowns and handbags.
But it seems children are now pulling the strings for designer Domenico Dolce—from within his own family. Style.com reported that the designer’s nieces drew pictures that ended up on the dresses models wore down the runway.
The babies rapidly conquered Instagram. (Perhaps we should have seen them coming when Dolce & Gabbana’s recent menswear collection included shirts printed with family photos.)
US editors may have interpreted the runway presence as one more portrayal of the Western obsession with “having it all,” or a stylish acknowledgment of the cult of parenthood.
But really, it looked lighter-hearted than all that: a tribute to hot mammas, Italian-style. And perhaps a timely one—although the babies stole the show, Italians need to get to work making more. Italy’s birth rate is at its lowest level since 1861.