“Saluti da Taormina,”promised the Dolce & Gabbana program notes. “Mare. Sole. Amore.” (Greetings from Taormina. Sea. Sun. Love.) Following hot on the heels of their triumphant debut into the alta moda, Stefano Gabbana and Domenico Dolce continued to surf the Sicilian wave that inspired that collection—an ode to Dolce’s native island—with a fast-paced and upbeat runway show that transported us “back to the holidays!” as Gabbana exulted backstage. The collection was infused with a fifties holiday-postcard vibe—from the brightly printed bandana headscarves to the raffia sandals and kitten-heeled winklepickers. The shapes were evocative too—full or pencil-skirted sundresses in airy satin organza and silk cloque and wide-cut tunic tops with puff-ball beach rompers. Bold stripes with a hand-painted look, in tomato or ultramarine and white, were a dramatic foil to fanciful folkloric prints. The designers took the island’s remarkable handicraft traditions and worked them in sophisticated ways—standouts in a season where an artisanal touch has threaded through the collections. The classic ceramic planters shaped like turbaned heads that are a specialty of the romantic hilltop town of Taormina (where their alta modaextravaganza took place) were incorporated into vividly colored prints or dangled as adorable little earrings;the elaborate straw and raffia work of the local place mats and lamp shades were used in tiny little skirts and brassiere tops, as well as in jackets that veiled close-fitting black lace dresses beneath. The shoes were extraordinary too—often decorated with embroidery of colored-straw strips and pompoms or with heels molded from bamboo. For the finale pieces, the designers evoked the Viscontian crinolines they created for haute couture, but this time fashioned them from wicker veiled in filmy black organza or the house’s signature Sicilian widow mantilla lace: artisanal masterpieces.