One of the fashion industry’s most unbreakable duos got eventually separated, when Maria Grazia Chiuri joined Dior, and Pierpaolo Piccioli was appointed the sole creative director of Valentino. Piccioli’s Valentino spring/summer 2017 collection was thus extremely anticipated, especially after Chiuri’s debut with the feminist Dior spring/summer 2017 collection.
This Paris Fashion Week was, in fact, the scene of mesmerizing debuts, and Piccioli’s was particularly appealing and breathtaking. As a whole, his Valentino spring/summer 2017 collection was all about standard Valentino evening dresses, with Valentino’s signature red color dominating the scene. The collection, however, also focused on pinks, fuchsias, greens and whites, with the staples being chromatically arranged throughout the runway show.
The richness of the colors, along with the elegance of the garments and the uber-defined cuts, pleasantly matched both the relaxed figures and the subtle hourglass silhouettes, enhanced either by thin belts or sewn contours. Sleek velvet fabrics surely helped the collection get its most sumptuous touch, while the sensually curve-hugging sheer materials added a contemporary touch to the looks, while at the same time treating us to one-of-a-kind frocks.
Such elegant, dreamlike dresses were created after Piccioli’s deep immersion into the medieval artistic forms, especially the works of Hieronymus Bosch. Piccioli got so fascinated by Bosch’s ambitious The Garden of Earthly Delights that he decided to translate its symbolist and intricate motifs to medieval silhouettes and equally intricate embroideries of natural scenes.
For his collection, Piccioli got also inspired by artist Dame Zandra Rhodes’ works. Zandra is a British stylist and designer, who, in the Sixties and Seventies, overwhelmed the fashion industry with her whimsical haute couture-esque hippy styles and bold floral patterns. Rhodes, of course, watched the runway show from the front row, and then declared that Piccioli’s collection “was wonderful.”
“He and an assistant came to my studio for two days, I showed them everything in my archive, and he asked me what I could do to make prints from the Bosch painting. It’s just incredible to see what they did with them,” she also explained.
Although looking extremely romantic red carpet-ready, the best part of the collection was that even its most elegantly crafted gowns were meant to be mixed and matched with one another, including the more urban-chic staples. Among trench coats, mini shoulder bags, flat sandals and even a biker jacket, this Valentino spring/summer 2017 collection truly gave us some cool material to play with, as the garments could be literally layered with one another.
Aside from the urban leather trench coats, Piccioli also treated us to more conventionally street wear looks too, such as wide-leg, flowy pants, button-down shirts and sweaters. Of course, femininity was at the core of these designs too, with Zandra-approved floral patterns lightening up the runway show’s grandiose finale.
Piccioli specifically left the most imposing, intricately tailored garments for the finale, taking our breaths away with layers of tulle appliqués, fairytale-like silhouettes, and even sophisticatedly sensual figures, of course, highlighted by Piccioli’s abounding usage of see-through fabrics.
As for the collection’s must-have staples, we predict Piccioli’s miniature lipstick cases reinvented as cross-body bags will fly off the shelves pretty quickly!
Photos courtesy of Vogue