From the outset, there was something fundamentally different about this year’s Valentino spring/summer presentation. It was held in Milan.
Typically, the Italian house shows in Paris – the capital of couture and runway romanticism – but this year creative director Pierpaolo Piccioli brought the collection home in a show of support for the local industry and people.
The setting was different too: a raw-edged industrial factory rather than a perfectly polished French salon. And then there were the clothes: sumptuous and sophisticated, but a little more sensible than we’ve come to expect from the house.
Neat tunics and tailored shorts breezed past mannish blazers, lace shirts and crochet sundresses, while chic straight-leg jeans – thanks to a collaboration with Levi’s – were paired with sheer, ruffled blouses.
There were old favourites too; namely a re-creation of the iconic Rockstud flat worn with nearly every look, and a stream of ethereal kaftans and cape dresses to close out the show. Floaty chiffon, lush florals and shades of marigold, mauve and fuchsia proved the breath-takers we’d been waiting for.
Things might be different, but we can always dream.