2012 Paris Couture Fashion Week: Valentino
Dark-hued luxury in rich brocade and midnight-navy silks dominated Valentino's Couture collection for Autumn/Winter 2012. Maria GraziaChiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli revisited the ethereal silhouettes and deep palette present in A/W's ready-to-wear, but explored new shapes in evening wear too, this time topping their gowns with capes and raising the hemlines and necklines of slim-cut brocade sheaths. We get both a sense of the regal — most obviously from the capes sweeping the runway — but also in the intricacy of embellishments and the sheer weight of the brocade fabrics. Necklines cited more sophistication than sensuality, though there's certainly a fair share of skin to be seen in the sheer insets and cut-outs of the more fluid gowns. The designers married their influences, French painter Gustave Moreau mixed in with the elegance of a modern woman, calling to mind stylish ladies like front-row attendee Olivia Palermo or Charlize Theron. Like their own appeal, the beauty of this collection was all about nuances that came together to frame a larger, richer, big picture.
- Trends: Brocade, sheer, florals, capes, embellishments
- Colours: Navy, red, black, soft yellow, and pink
- Key piece: The brocade pastel yellow sheath and the sheer and lace-inset navy gown with cape
- Accessories: Lace-up heels, ballet-slipper inspired pumps
- Who would wear it: Red-carpet beauties like Charlize Theron