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On Sunday in Paris, Valentino’s Creative Director Pierpaolo Piccioli removed any doubt in our mind that less is, in fact, more. A hot pink venue engulfed in the singular color gave guests a hint for what was to come, as they filed into the cavernous show space. The invitations for the maison’s Fall/Winter 2022 presentation might have also been a tell—made in collaboration with Douglas Coupland, the miniature 40-page booklets were imagined entirely in the vibrant rose, too.
One by one, the garments began to infiltrate the rosy runway, offering no divergence in color—and the effect was magnificent. With models dressed from head to toe in the vibrant hue, Piccioli chose the powerful pink as a channel through which to focus on form and fabrication. We saw sculptural dresses, effortless tailoring, quintessential outerwear silhouettes, dramatic gowns, and simplistic shapes made to shine with statement details. As Piccioli quickly proved, diminishing color opened up a realm of possibility in other areas—seen through the inclusion of elements like bows, beading, sequins, textured knits, ethereal sheers with embroidery, voluminous fluff or feathers, and detailed cut-outs and appliques.
A break in the theme in a suite of all-black looks imbued the same elegance and focus on shape as their pink counterparts, making us feel at ease when we say that this collection had something for everyone. For comfort came slouchy or boxy silhouettes like an off-the-shoulder knit and matching skirt, and a shirt dress covered in pink crystals. Androgynous suiting could be worn open sans shirt or buttoned up with a blouse for office attire. For the wearer with a touch of daring—a sheer, gauzy top that gathered at the neck styled with shoulder-length gloves and sequin trousers, or a gown with cut-outs up and down the bodice and sleeves, decorated with bows. We also saw styles like glittering lederhosen trousers, cocoon coats covered in feathers, gallant capes, modish minis, and Renaissance-reminiscent dresses with carved bustlines.
Gloves became a staple for the season, accompanying every single look, alongside platform heels—like a pair of bejeweled Mary Janes or hot pink flatform Chelsea boots. Styling remained simplistic, with each look featuring either a bold eye or earrings matching the monochrome palette. Other accessories included a suite of purses like an envelope clutch, a rectangular shape in glossy leather, a minuscule handbag just bigger than the wearer’s fist, outfitted with a pink chain strap and studs, and a small metal case with the signature V, worn around the wearer’s neck.