A sparse 200 guests were spread out on cubes in an industrial space softened by floral arrangements.
The silver lining of the virus-induced travel difficulties that kept many people from travelling to Milan Fashion Week from abroad: They also kept Rome-based Valentino from making the trans-alpine trip to the fashion house's usual show venue in Paris.
For his first-ever Milan show, creative director Pierpaolo Piccioli chose a disused foundry as the backdrop for the lush, romantic collection in the fashion language of lattice and lace; floral detailing and bold prints; ruffles and fringe. But there also was an urban edge, in mini-hemlines and studded detailing.
A sparse 200 guests were spread out on cubes in an industrial space softened by floral arrangements. The British singer Labrinth sang hauntingly in the background.
"The simplification and the quest for new meaning guides the selection of the pieces," the house said in notes.
Chiffon blouses were worked up into ruffles that envelop the wearer like a rose, worn with slightly distressed jeans. A mini-tunic over short shorts had an edgy urban feel, paired with studded, pointy flats. Longer dresses had lattice work providing just flashes of skin. Sleeves cascading into fringes gave drama to body hugging dresses. The finale, as ordained by the name Valentino, included a rich collection of flowing chiffon dresses in eye-popping monochromes, saving red for last.
All of the key elements, florals, lace, lattice, also were reinterpreted also for men: a floral hoodie, a lace short and top set, a ruffle-front shirt over shorts.
In Milan, "the signs and codes of Valentino today are being re-signified," the house said in press notes.