Friday, 14 August 2015

V A L E N T I N O Rome

Valentino is Rome and this brand has come home; Valentino Garavani founded his couture house there in the 1960's. Though they typically close couture's abbreviated week in Paris, in the seven years since Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli took the reins at Valentino, they've rarely designed a collection that hasn't showcased their own Italian heritage in one way or another. This season was breathtaking - oh so Rome.

The day began with an exhibition of couture dresses from previous seasons hidden in the closed-to-the-public places all over the city that have inspired them. It was one spectacular venue after another. The Biblioteca Casanatense, a public library lined with thousands of books and a smell so evocative you could hardly forget it. An 1840 marble bath in a palazzo still in private hands. A third-century AD Mithraic grotto discovered in the 1930s. Walking out of the last stop on the tour, which was the painter Giorgio de Chirico's apartment-turned-museum, you wondered if the runway show itself would be able to measure up.

Straight off the Colosseum's walls. Noir. Sinister. Loved it!