Winter in Milan; from Swinging Sixties Coats in Pastel-Pink to the Skirt and Sweater Combo Everyone Who's Anyone Will Be Sporting Next Season, MilanFashion Week Was a Hotbed of Shiny New Trends. Karen Dacre Reports from the Front Row

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Byline: Karen Dacre

?POSH PATCHWORK Quilting and patchwork created from flashes of texture in contrasting shades was among the prevailing messages following the London shows. In Milan, this aesthetic was given a high-class makeover. Bottega Veneta designer Tomas Maier added texture to beautifully cut dresses by adding strips of silk in rich shades while at Marni, Consuela Castiglioni crafted yeti-coats by patchworking panels of fur for memorable effect.

?THE EVENING COAT Donatella Versace doesn't do daywear. So, of course, when she designs a coat it looks far better suited to the marbled dance floor of some steamy Dubai hotel dancefloor than it does to your early-morning commute. For next winter a preoccupation with military regalia -- as inspired by pieces owned by her brother Gianni -- means Versace's outerwear options are voluminous, satin and festooned with ornate trims.

?THE STATEMENT SCARF Are scarves the new handbags? Quite possibly. In her second ready-to-wear collection for luxury accessory label Tods, Alessandra Facchinetti relied on bold scarves in geometric prints to add extra opulence to a show entirely crafted for gilded cosmopolitan types. Miuccia Prada, keen to recreate the sultry, sensual style of her heroine Petra Von Kant, teamed conical structured dresses with narrow silk neckties.

?THE HEEL IS DEAD When every other designer in Milan champions the same trend, it's a surefire sign it's reached global saturation. For this reason, the high-heel is set to remain dormant next winter. At Marni, slouch pencil skirts were presented alongside goldtrimmed winklepickers in patent and at Dolce & Gabbana a series of covetable bejewelled T-bar flats appeared perfectly at home among the designers' most extravagant eveningwear. …

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