Ruffled silk organza, floral crystal embroideries, embroidered silk brocade and floral macramé, hand-stitched paillettes and strass, and many other opulent materials and embellishments – and this is a non-exhaustive list – all put together in a highly feminine collection with a playful allure.
Yes, we are at a Giambattista Valli show, and there were many must-have pieces that celebrated the Italian designer's state-of-the-art craftsmanship.
In fact, today's Haute Couture pieces will certainly make for an eye-catcher when worn by Valli's Couture clientele and famous friends – remember Rihanna's "think pink" gown at the 2015 Grammy Awards? But this Spring/Summer 2016 collection was not just another memorable Couture offering with VIP potential, it was Giambattista's 10th Haute Couture collection so far – and he took a moment to celebrate his success.
And if one analyzes his latest offering of delicately embroidered cocktail and evening dresses, va-va-voom numbers, and opulent ball gowns through the prism of this celebration, this season's collection could even be interpreted like a retrospective, or at least an introspection. One that looked into the past, present, and future of Valli's creative universe – a memorable update and confident take on his signature style pieces.
And indeed, Giambattista's best-of Couture outfits were all there on the runway and made for a great show, especially his figure-hugging ball gowns crafted from tired pleated tulle in white, baby blue, peony rose, poppy red, and smoky black. These always make an impression towards the end of his show.
This time around, certain elements also stood out and built the guiding thread of this season's collection – think a mini caped cocktail dress in silk brocade or a balloon sleeved cocktail dress in silk cloque that channeled the spirit of the 1960s and 1970s.
But above all, Valli's new Couture offering was about expressing a certain romance – with a soft touch of melancholia – a romantic collection that unfurled to the beat of the show's vibrant drum and bass flavored soundtrack (mainly a remix of "Amoureuse" by White Sea). This style clash also came with a good dose of sexiness – think drop-sleeved and bare shoulder cocktail dresses and leggy numbers. Perfectly suited for Rihanna and her "dress to impress" philosophy.