Valentino is on the selling block, and could go for as much as $852 million.
After drawing rave reviews for couture, the Italian label is reportedly preparing for a sale to an unknown buyer, according to WWD.
But it’s a good thing for Valentino.
Fashion and art collided head-on last night at the Eli Klein Fine Art gallery in Soho during the opening of Chinese artist Liu Bolin’s exhibition, “Lost in Art”, which included a high fashion collaboration (not of the H&M variety). For those of you who don’t subscribe to Harper’s Bazaar (disclosure: I do), the magazine collaborated with the contemporary artist to literally paint larger-than-life fashion designers Alber Elbaz, Angela Missoni, Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli of Valentino and Jean Paul Gaultier — who was on hand, working the crowd — into the background.
Liu is quite renowned in highbrow (and deep-pocketed — the large size of the pieces sell for $36,000 a pop) arty circles for his quiet but striking conceptual photos featuring himself painted into culturally and historically important locales in China. Harper’s Bazaar special projects director Laura Brown happened to have stumbled upon his work at a Stockholm gallery recently, whipped up this collaboration and skillfully made it work.
PARIS–After weeks of being presented with more challenging, boxy, and sometimes oversized silhouettes, it was so nice and even refreshing to take in Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pier Paolo Piccioli ultra-feminine, just plain pretty fall collection. Sumptuous soft black leather toughened up the pretty a bit–on a cape, a skirt, and a gorgeous leather jump suit to open the show.
FLORENCE–”We’ve had a long love affair with Valentino,” Raffaello Napoleone, CEO of Pitti Immagine told me following Valentino’s menswear show in Florence this week (Valentino made his international debut in Florence in 1962). “Of course we already had a relationship in the past with Valentino and Giancarlo Giammetti and we have done things with them in the past but that has totally changed…We started following the work of the new designers and waited for the moment when they were ready to launch a menswear line. Now we have seen their two menswear presentations and we decided the moment was right to launch the line.”
And what a launch it was.
PARIS–There was a lot to love about Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli’s spring collection for Valentino: 1) gorgeous red-carpet-worthy lace and sheer gowns, in the usual palette of Valentino-red, black and beige, livened up with floral embroidery done in Jil Sander spring 2011-esque fluorescents; 2) the signature ruffles were there but there was also a fresh new strapless tent silhouette that fell straight away from the body; 3) they made eveningwear look good with flats; 4) there was air conditioning (wha happened, Lanvin?).
PARIS–One of the most difficult tasks in fashion is how to evolve an established brand–in this case the venerable house of Valentino and its tremendous couture heritage–into something relevant. In the two and a half years since their first couture outing, designers Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pier Paolo Piccioli’s vocabulary at Valentino has been a back and forth debate regarding how much respect must be paid to the house’s history.
At Wednesday morning’s fall couture show at the Hôtel Salomon de Rothschild, the designers were able to strike this delicate balance. The Valentino craftsmanship and many of the house’s codes–laces, sheer chiffon and ruffles–were all present, but reworked in new and subtle ways. This collection of day and evening clothes that demonstrated the designer’s command of the house’s direction.
Long Nguyen is the co-founder/style director of Flaunt.
PARIS–“Sportswear is the modern uniform, and we are trying to create sportswear with the feeling of traditional craftsmanship. Valentino has a heritage of couture, but we must make that part of the new world,” said Pier Paolo Piccioli at the quiet lunchtime presentation of the Valentino men’s collection, which took place in the brand’s the sumptuous Place Vendôme office. Rather than a fashion show, designers Maria Grazia Chuiri and Piccioli personally narrated how specific pieces were made and spoke of evolving Valentino menswear into a modern, relaxed, luxurious collection.
The collection was mainly individual garments of graphic and linear jackets, boxy military outerwear and slim trousers and denim in dark olive green, camel, charcoal and white. Each piece can be layered over one another in any casual or dressed up manner.
PARIS–”Pretty” sounds like a reductive descriptor for Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pier Paolo Piccioli fall 2011 collection for Valentino, but it’s apt. “Pretty” over gorgeous or stunning or any other hyperbolic adjective because the collection was restrained, delicate, feminine, and, well, pretty–right down to the flowers appliqued to the necklines of dresses. A twinkly soundtrack reflected the preciousness of the dresses (less so when an awful version of “Missing” by Everything But the Girl was mixed in).
“Are they screaming J.Lo,” asked the girl next to me. “God I hope not. I think they’re screaming ‘Let’s Go!’” We’re inside la Halle Freyssinet, a convention-like center on the outskirts of Paris for the Valentino show. And though everyone’s seated (it’s a small show, the first I’ve been to with no standing at all), Read more →
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