Dolls Eye View: Milan Fall/Winter 19 Trends

Milan! How my girls love you! Again, there are still some wild and crazy things on the catwalk, but it seems, the Milan we once knew and love is making its comeback. Lots of tailored jackets, head-to-toe coordinated ensembles and some very pretty dresses sums up what we found in the Italian fashion capital. Let's get straight to the point. If you can only make one thing for your doll next fall, plan to make a jacket! And the fabrics you should put at the top of your priority list: plaids, tiny checks, herringbone and tweeds. Hint: head for the menswear fabrics!

The Jacket
The best way to wear a jacket---long, lean and slipped over the shoulders of a sweet, short mini dress. Silhouettes here are simple with sharp shoulders. The garments underneath are girly and flirty.
We love contrast of this look. A chic leather blazer combined with a tender girly girl peach satin tent dress. The original garment features a white shirt under her leather jacket. I dolled up Billie's outfit with a white satin scarf and a long rope of pearls.

Coat Check
Outerwear becomes an integral part of the over all ensemble. A coat or cape with matching trousers or even with matching fabric boots. This is called dressing from top to toe....a look that is timelessly chic. Everything is in the color of the winter skies...shades of gray to midnight blue. 
Liu was attracted to this coat with deep cut front and a hardware belt. I've seen this type of coat before and always thought it was curious how it exposed so much of the shoulders and bust. But dolls don't have to worry about that, so I made this version out of a menswear, pinstripe lightweight wool. It has matching straight legged trousers. And because this is for Fall/Winter season, Liu wears it with a funnel collar sweater..though for fancy evenings, this would also look wonderful with a black lace top!

Urban Nomad
Faux fur, fleece or shaggy knit...we're on an excursion at the tundra with these cold weather looks. If any of you knit, the first two are for you. My girls love the monochromatic look of a shaggy sweater coat over a silk dress or plaid jumpsuit. This tone-on-tone, top-to toe-looks is a reoccurring trend for next winter.
Tiah shows off her best polar vortex set.... a white chunky tweed jacket and matching shorts with a fur boa tossed around the shoulders and held in place with a beige fanny pack! Her boots are made from the same fabric as her shorts suit.

Pure white as the driven snow..a trend we first spotted in New York..has made it over the Atlantic in grand style. Coats over jackets, jackets over trousers... this is a story of layered, Frosty the Snow Dolly, complete with jacket, pants and overcoat. White on white as a "total look" is on point for next winter. Note how pants have grown in volume as have the shoulders of the jackets!

Plaid Your Case
Men's into womenswear...this theme plays with fabrics typically found in monsieur's closet: plaids, checks, tweeds and all variations in between. And yes, there is the traditional tailored jacket over skirts or pants, but you can have fun and use these patterned wools into unexpected softly draped silhouettes.

For Angelina, we compromised. Her look starts with a fitted, shawl collar blazer in plaid over a herringbone mini skirt. I've fringed the hems of both to add a soft, feminine edge and added a white lace scarf to feminize the overall look. Then over this suit is a great, big, swashbuckling shawl tossed over the shoulders. And yes, that is a smart watch on her wrist!

Thick and Thin
If you look closely, you will see a departure from some of the past trends. Silhouettes have grown wider, looser and longer. Pants are decisively wide and long...sometimes with raised waists. Be careful not to go so wide, the garment swallows your doll. (Make your pattern a little more narrow than what you see.) So even though there are wide elements, the look should still come off as long.
The trick is, however, to keep the doll from being swallowed by her outfit. And you do this by respecting the scale of the doll in relation to the fabric you choose. I love the big, comfortable shapes of this Agora pants ensemble. That everything is kept in a soft, pearl grey tone, the model is not overwhelmed. But I was concerned this might not translate well for Carla, a Barbie Model Muse (with the original body). So instead of using the plush fabric of Carla's coat all over, I cut the straight loose top and straight legged pants out of silk in the same color. The result is "wide" for the doll, but still "slim" enough to pull off for her scale. By the way, her straight legged trousers are 1" (2cm) wide seam to seam.

Dance, dance, dance!!! These are hot party dresses that are pretty classic...starting with the strapless sheath to a 1950's corset and tulle skirt as well as everything in between. The girls like slippery, shiny fabrics that shimmy and twirl.
For Natalia, who was looking for a modern day princess look, this two-piece dancing dress consists of a corset--lace and ribbon on tulle worn over a full tulle skirt marked with a red satin belt.
At the other end of the spectrum, we have Samantha who loves the edgy look of leather. But instead of biker babe, we dressed this strapless sheath up by adding a belt that wraps into a bow, long leather gloves and a frilly shawl to toss over her shoulders in the wee hours of the morning. We both love this dress because it can be dressed up or down, paired with soft or hard fabric accessories, worn strappy pumps or knee high leather boots. 

Twilight Hour
And then there is that one thing that sets the Italians apart from all the other capitals.....their ability to make a doll look drop dead gorgeous. For Fall, all is fair in love and war....from velvet and lace to satin and sequins. We love the lace but could not resist making a 1/6 version of Alberta Feretti's black paillette dress.
I only had time to make one dress, ladies!!!! Sophia models the one we all loved. It's an evening length slip dress covered with rows of paillettes separated with sequins and dotted with few beads and a whisp of tulle. Ciao Bella!!!

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Next and last stop on the fashion month train: Paris! See you there!!!!

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