Fantasy. Valentino Couture AW19

Summing up: it’s a fantasy.

With a 5-star line-up of models including the great Lauren Hutton, each singular silhouette that came down the Valentino runway added more and more meaning to a show that celebrated the opulence of diversity through a “gathering of individuals“, as colours, shapes, headpieces, flowers and fringes came together in one stunning presentation of fashion design and its finest. Long sentence, I know, but Pierpaolo Piccioli makes you feel ecstatic with his haute couture. From the yellow tiered wool yarn fringing and Hmong/Miao tribe-inspired headpieces to cartoonish leopard prints and Matisse cut-outs in acid colours, this show was spectacular. The cut, the plumage details, those subtle Yves Saint Laurent references, the out-of-this-world craftsmanship (note that pink dress made out of squares!) the joy, the magnificience… this collection is so deep in its beauty that it truly touches your soul. Bravo, bravo, bravo.

Collage by Edward Kanarecki.

Best Looks from AW19 Couture…


The library lounge venue at Chanel and models walking to Portishead’s forever intriguing ‘Glory Box’…

While in overall the autumn-winter 2019 haute couture had more mehs (Daniel Roseberry’s overcharged debut at Schiaparelli, the chaos at Maria Grazia Chiuri’s Dior…) than yeahs, I still managed to find a few looks that really, really won it. And, of course Pierpaolo Piccioli’s Valentino utterly stole my heart, but on that in a separate post. So, here are the three most gorgeous outfits I took notice of this season (again, except for Valentinoooo!).

This Viktor & Rolf look is like a Marc Chagall painting, in all of its aspects: from the paint-like texture of the felt material to the witchy, oneiric aura surrounding it. I call this art-and-coven couture.

Virginie Viard‘s debut couture collection at Chanel first felt like a snooze to me. But then I grasped its point: the beauty in regal. It’s just so rare in today’s fashion. The look worn by Sara Grace Wallerstedt – a pleated, high-collar, sleeveless shirt and a mustard skirt – is pure elegance.

With Clare Waight Keller, one season is a miss, another is a success. The autumn-winter 2019 couture outing was her best one yet. She has let some drama to Givenchy. The velvet, black dress with a lowered crinoline is so refined and sharp. So chic, yet in a way… disturbing? That’s the spirit of noblesse radicale.

All collages by Edward Kanarecki.

Colour. Valentino Couture SS19

Pierpaolo Piccioli’s couture for Valentino is the only couture that matters. No crazy venues that attempt to distract you from noticing how plain the collection is (I see you, Dior and Chanel). Just pure, joyous, glorious haute couture that enchants and truly impresses. And makes Celine Dion cry. This spring-summer 2019 collection, reserved for the richest and most extravagant women on our planet, was a triumph of audacious colour, beauty and glamour. But also, it was a major model casting breakthrough, with completely diverse models that made the garments even more exquisite. The designer embraced black beauty, having Adut Akech open the show (in a brilliant, pink ensemble) and Naomi Campbell close (in a gown made out of translucent organza in the shade of Chocolate Dahlia). There was Liya Kebede, there was Lineisy Montero, there was Ugbad Abdi. Runway icons, veterans, and newcomers. The entire scene looked like a fairy-tale… that really took place. This couture collection again proved that colour is crucial for Pierpaolo, especially in terms of couture. “You don’t invent beauty, but you can invent new harmonies for colour”, the maestro said backstage. Just read the following: a coral coat worn with a chocolate crepe blouse and emerald gabardine pants. Lilac serape topped a pair of orange pants. Turquoise lace and tangerine silk faille. Green sequins. Pale mauve. Matisse blue. All that worked with voluminous ball gowns that took hundreds of hours to create at Valentino atelier in Rome. Unquestionably, Piccioli is a couturier of Garavani’s heights. And it’s a blessing for today’s fashion to experience his genius.

All collages by Edward Kanarecki.