Valentino Paris Fashion Week Spring Summer 2016:"Epic From Roma To Africa"
Valentino left their Italian heritage and their beloved Rome behind (the city is their headquarters and is always a mine of inspiration, the rockstud for example was born from the humble pyramid studs that decorate the city’s doors) and instead they travelled to the wild plains of Africa.
With hair braided in cornrows and piled up into buns, the opening looks were a tame beginning to proceedings: a series of plain black and exquisite empire line tunics suspended by metal necklaces. Yes, plain black, it sounds Roman enough, but the show developed in decoration from there. There were African prints depicting tribal scenes of leopards, rhinos, giraffes and elephants, kinetic geometric tribal markings, while cuffs and necklines exploded in quills and peacock feathers. Fringing is a mainstay here and it swished in tiered raffia to make up a coat, and from suede miniskirts and capes. A series of tie-dye pieces – a jacquard coat, cargo jacket and pair of flares were also standout. And then came the fragile lace maxi dresses, so delicate they could almost evaporate right there and then.
Eyes were also on the new bags, which were garlanded in Masai beading and decked out in miniature African masks carved out of metal, and those white terracotta jewellery pieces were the result of a collaboration with artist Alessandro Gaggio, who designed the gold pendants at the couture show earlier this year. All in all, it was an epic body of work that women, from Rome to Africa and beyond will all be wanting a piece of.