The Italian Almanac


A Sparkling Summer

Fashionistas have been given their marching orders, or call to sparkle, for the 2013 summer season. After a long and muted winter, the shine is back for both men and women, but unlike the last two summers, this year's glow is not as much in the color as it is in the threads, sequins and lame' fabrics.

Hot-weather wardrobes are injected with a psychedelic feel, chrome color combinations and a tailored fit. This summer's shine is not for the timid, nor is it confined to the usual glitz of evening wear. The season's must-have item is an authentic harkening back to the go-go days of shimmer - hot pants. Whether they are made with spangles, metallic tassels and even paillettes or high-tech fabrics, the important thing is to have at least one model in the wardrobe.

By the same measure, men will not be out shone. Fashion houses have honed in on men and made sure they won't be playing second fiddle to female radiance. Laminated leather trench coats in pea-green super-tech fabrics and leather bomber jackets for women are equalled by silk brocade jacket for men.

As it often happens in the world of fashion, to move forward sometimes designers take a step back. This summer's psychedelic spirit sings of today's extravagance by contemporary singer Lady Gaga. However, it also pays homage to the eccentricity of the 60s and the glitz of David Bowie, whose unforgettable studded shoes and iridescent jackets are on display next to the artist's memorabilia at London's Victoria and Albert Museum.