The air is laced with a scintillating perfume of rose petals, exuding an aura of elegance and privacy. Intricately tailored garments parade across a cream-carpeted platform, lined by gilded chairs reminiscent of a classic salon de couture. This intimate yet grand spectacle is no other than the much-anticipated Giambattista Valli Haute Couture Fall/Winter 2023.
In our rapidly transforming world, fashion genius Giambattista Valli posits an intriguing idea: the ultimate privilege of today is privacy. This notion, manifested through the serene ambiance of his couture show, is accompanied by Valli’s resistance to the word “luxury”. He prefers, rather emphatically, “excellence”.
The Valli atelier is not a beacon of ostentatious luxury, but a crucible of perfectionism. He subscribes to a non-reductionist philosophy, one that roots itself in the pristine foundation of haute couture. His collection is a time-traveling exploration, drawing influences from the grayscale sophistication of the ’50s ateliers to the modern-day vibrancy of his maison. This array of inspiration lends an era-less characteristic to couture, in Valli’s words, “it floats over the times”. His modernity, a sapling nurtured in the fertile soils of classicism.
Valli’s emphasis on the core essence of savoir-faire is evident in his innovative techniques. He teases out ethereal volumes from fabric and embarks on audacious constructions. His perspective on couture garments echoes Oscar Wilde’s view on personalities: each dress, like a person, has a unique spirit. They coalesce into a symphony of fluid columns, frothy cupcakes, elaborate flou drapings, and structured crinolines.
The Giambattista Valli Haute Couture Fall/Winter 2023 collection strikes a balance between simplicity and grandeur. A meticulously selected color palette – rich black, piercing white, Bois de Rose, calibrated splashes of absinthe and silver – amplifies the clarity of his vision. A minimalist styling approach seals the ensemble with a kiss of conciseness.
Yet, underneath this stark precision, Valli’s couture pulsates with a vibrant Italian effervescence, filtered through a playful Parisian insouciance. The introductory look, a black bustier dress paired with asymmetrical crinoline and undulating white organza volants, highlights this melange of cultures. Topped with flat velvet ballerinas and a generous reveal of bare legs, it captures the hearts and smartphone lenses of Valli’s youthful spectators.
Equally enticing is the finale, a voluptuous pale-pink confection of plissé tulle rosettes, crowned by a sequined heart-shaped bustier. A quintessential representation of Valli’s creativity, this piece radiates frivolity, joy, and an impertinent sprinkle of ‘’je ne sais quoi’’.
©Photo: Giambattista Valli / Yannis Vlamos