Valentino Is Taking a Couture Approach to Handbags

The new bags feature ruffles and bows to contrast the almost all-black runway looks.
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In his latest collection at Paris Fashion Week, Pierpaolo Piccioli took a more toned down direction for Valentino in comparison to his previous designs, which are known to have featured bright hues and prints ideal for head-turning red-carpet moments. 

The Fall 2020 collection, which heavily featured menswear tailoring and all-black looks, was designed to "focus on the humanity of individuals to depict and exalt their feelings and emotions," as the designer stated in the show notes. With more minimal design, the designer's goal was for the individuality of the person to show through. The added "statement" to the looks, however, was the brand's lineup of intricate handbags that came down the runway. While the designer eliminated excess in the clothing, he intended for "sensuality" to shine in the accessories, per a press release.

The new Atelier bags, which comprise four categories — ruffles, petals, micro-studs and bows — are Piccioli's way of expanding elements of couture to more than clothes. The designer has always imbued couture values into his ready-to-wear collections — for spring 2020, he launched Le Blanc, a line of customizable white shirting with couture details — and is now taking the same approach to his accessories. 

The handbags incorporate traditional Valentino aesthetic signatures with contemporary twists like quilted leather, hobo-esque styles and oversized silhouettes. The leather bags are done in the brand's house red, maroon and black, but also include rose motifs and large bows, all done using couture techniques, for added glamour. The designer also added a nod to the brand's popular "rock stud" signature with micro-studs embellished onto slouchy totes. 

See below for an up-close look at the Valentino Garavani Atelier bags that came down the runway during Paris Fashion Week.                                     

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