I've always waited on the Valentino show as impatiently as I would wait for the Chanel one or the Dior collection, while Mr. Galliano was still in charge. There's always something magical about the garments and the story that the designer duo envisions, always keeping the same lines and shapes the House is known for, yet still constantly innovating, either through a new color, a new embroidery, a new pattern or a different degree of opacity. This collection represented a return to the roots for the the designers, as they decided to show this collection in Rome. The symbolism of the collection is best expressed through their own words: "We wanted to show people Rome through our eyes. The layers and layers of history which can exist even in one place, where ancient temples lie beneath buildings which have been used for centuries,even till today." Taking this into consideration, the choice of the venue fit like a glove: the sixteenth-century Palazzo Mignanelli is both an example of Roman historym but also the place where the designers and seamstresses work every day.
The collection is a work of art, an enormous inspiration of fragile, full-length lace dresses, paired with occasional embroidered capes. The spectators were drawn into the atmosphere, as different centuries in Roman history seemed to pass in front of their eyes. If one let one's imagination flow, one could easily recognize women throughout the ages from pagan handmaidens and Renaissance princesses up to women in modern-day nobility or symbols such as the robes of priests and cardinals in the Vatican City or gladiator armors. The collection was a stunning moment full of poetry, with an erotic and sinister undertone, addressing also the darkness of the city.
I could barely choose what garments not to include here, so picking favorites this time will be impossible. I haven't been moved by a collection so much in a long time! A few favorites however would be the dress in the opening photo and the black dress with stars embroidery paired with a matching cape. Have a look for yourselves and tell me if you managed to pick a favorite!
Fun fact: before watching the collection I saw someone mention that the collection reminded them of Game of Thrones... When I saw the first look - the black dress with feather motives and a red belt - I couldn't help but think that could be Cersei! Such a great inspiration twist. See if you can spot any other similarities!
Photos: Umberto Fratini / Indigitalimages.com and Imaxtree