By Andrea Cheng
Updated Sep 21, 2016 @ 11:45 am
Swan Gallet/WWD/REX/Shutterstock

As the designer who has won over the hearts of fashion insiders, influencers, and consumers all over the world with his more-is-more philosophy, Gucci's Alessandro Michele has earned the honor of having one of the buzziest, highly anticipated shows of Milan Fashion Week. Or rather, the buzziest stage of MFW. The three-dimensional invite alone suggested that we were in for a theatrical treat, starring his usual zoo of animal motifs and unpredictable whimsicalities.

Keep reading for a play-by-play of everything that happened at the Gucci spring 2017 show—from a venue carpeted in all pink to fantastical tulle dresses—because when the master of maximalism speaks, you listen.

1. The invitation was a work of art: a pop-up three-dimensional theater starring animals and flowers from the Gucci Garden ...

2. ... which made sense come show time. Titled "Magic Lanterns," the Gucci spring 2017 collection comprised clothing that "tell a story steeped in wonder, phantasmagoria, and unorthodoxy. Such stories don't mimetically represent reality. They rather act as magic lanterns, as distorting mirrors, altering languages, signs, and consolidated codes," according to the brand's show notes. Word check: Phantasmagoria means "a sequence of real or fictional images like those seen in a dream."

3. A curtain of disco-like mirrored squares served as the entrance to the show's venue (Via Valtellina 5/7). When pulled back they revealed a runway carpeted in pink (and the brand's signature stars and stripes—an excellent backdrop for shoefies), plush tufted seats, and more than 250,000 mirrored sequins all over.

4. Red lights dimmed the runway and looks materialized out of a hazy mist (bad for Instas, but great for giving each look a surreal, dreamlike quality).

5. The lineup featured a melting pot of ideas, running from disco suits and ruffled '80s prom dresses to tinsel-happy fringe dresses to chinoiserie-inspired embroideries to ethereal tulle gowns. Some statement-making looks were more literal in their delivery, with the words "cemetery," "future," and "love for blind" embroidered or stamped across dresses and coats.

6. The accessories situation: Gucci-emblazoned fans, studded black-rim frames, outrageous fascinators, loafer platforms, and sandal-boot hybrids.

7. In the front row? Dakota Johnson and Soko.