In an industry where the subversive is often lauded above the beautiful, Giambattista Valli reinstates the importance of the latter season after season. Spring 2023, shown on Friday in Paris, was no different, with the designer sending his usual crop of extravagant, ultra-feminine looks down the runway against a delicate soundtrack of serene classical music.
Indeed, the French fashion house's latest offering serves as a reminder that the aesthetically pleasing remains at the core of its work. In typical Valli fashion, the collection featured a plethora of voluminous ruffled dresses, including a turquoise polka-dot baby-doll dress, alongside a densely layered lime gown with princess sleeves and a bulging pink skirt. A number of pieces came made from lighter fabric, like a see-through two-piece ensemble with floral embroidery, for instance. Keeping in mind the warmer spring temperatures, the label also prioritized looks that revealed more skin, with models walking down the runway in mini dresses with cutouts along the body, revealing the midriff or a shoulder. Meanwhile, traditional maxi dresses came disassembled into two pieces, turning into a bralette and skirt. The lightness was reinforced by the collection's color palette of soothing pastels, perfect for any range of fresh, buoyant spring holidays.
As Valli himself once told Vogue, he considers himself "the most French of the Italians," and this French saveur was apparent throughout this collection. While the opening look bore a striking resemblance to the gaudy gold trimmings at the Palace of Versailles, much of the collection seemed to borrow from classic Parisian motifs, such as floral wallpapers, delicate porcelains and palatial gardens. We see this on several dresses covered in patterns reminiscent of iconic toile wallpaper, complete with its own range of pastoral and monochromatic scenes and harkening back to the unadulterated romanticism of the Rococo era.
Giambattista Valli also made plenty of references to the splendor of Western decorative arts, especially in the jewelry and footwear. Each model wore a pair of chunky bejeweled earrings, encased in a circle of dazzling rhinestones. Bright jewels also came featured on the footwear, studding each row of gladiator sandals that dominated the runway, with several looks even featuring a gemstone placed squarely on the model's forehead — just in case you missed the show's opulence.
See every look from Giambattista Valli's Spring 2023 collection in the gallery below.
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