PIERPAOLO PICCIOLI decided to strip it back this season. He reduced his palette to two colours: classic black and a vibrant hue of fuchsia pink – or more specifically, an aptly named shade entitled Pink PP in collaboration with the Pantone Color Institute.
This new take on monochrome allowed the creative director of Valentino to maximise his design expression for autumn-winter 2022 within a realm of apparent lack.
Consuming 48 of the extensive 81 look collection, the single note of pink was chosen to liberate us from the dark realism of our lives and into the bold and beautiful world of Valentino.
Though the opening looks may have been a visual shock, this injection of brash colour slowly allowed the audience to pay closer attention to the wearer, uncovering the unique details of the models as well as the silhouette, detailing and material choice of the look.
By subtracting copious amounts of colour and patterns, there was a genius to the amount of amplification it gave to the look – in a sense, it magnified the individual and the clothing, painting a new narrative beyond the seams.
Continuing to elevate the everyday with his couture touch rewriting the codes of ready-to-wear, Piccioli’s AW22 focused on necklines as a way to focus our gaze on the face of the wearer.
From off-the-shoulder knitted jumpers finished with vertical embellishments, to more sculpted sweetheart necklines on delicate dresses and contrasting masculine turtlenecks hiding the skin, the designer painted his collection with a kaleidoscope of variations.
But beyond the framing of the head, tightly cinched waists, hyper short hemlines and opaque chiffon that exposed the body characterised the womenswear collection.
Sensual from the top to bottom of each look, bows, ruffles and lace decorated the women, whilst varying in size, each detail stayed true to the colour scheme, right down to the metalware proving Piccioli’s eye for precision is one that continues to be unmatched.
While the womenswear shape remained mostly petite and slimming, menswear was oversized and pumped full of layers. Hidden floral embroidery was found on bomber jackets, double-breasted pea coats hinted at tailoring and simple hoodies brought a more casual tone to the collection, all coming together to ensure basics were covered but evening-wear continued to shine through.
Though radical in nature, Valentino’s AW22 collection comprised of two colours was a triumphant insight into the savoir-faire of the Italian fashion house.
Season upon season, Piccioli’s couture stance at the mundane seems to paint the ordinary in such a beautiful light it is hard not to fall in love with his romanticism – especially when it’s pink!
by Imogen Clark