Get out your pens and notepad – Valentino’s taking us back to uni. Kicking off Milan Men’s Fashion Week on the first day is no easy feat, but Valentino schooled it for the brand’s ‘The Narratives’ Menswear show. We’re taking a look at the key takeaways from Valentino’s show; so, pay attention, this could be on the final.
VALENTINO SAID “GET BACK IN THE CLASSROOM”
Imagine leaving second period to grab lunch and stumbling into a Valentino show. Well, that’s exactly what happened to Università degli Studi di Milano students today. Valentino’s ‘The Narrative’ Menswear show was surrounded by the excited buzz of student life, hosted inside a courtyard within the university’s walls during teaching-time nonetheless. Valentino’s decision to host the show here was actually in recognition of a recent donation to the uni from the brand itself, allocated to the Diritto Allo Studio for the next academic year.
THE SOUNDTRACK WAS KINDA FAMILIAR
Of course, where there’s students, there’s TikTok, so naturally the show opened under a blazing hot Italian sun to the reverberating sounds of a live band, headlined by singer d4vd, performing one TikTok viral hit after another. From d4vd’s own viral track “Here With Me” to The Smiths’ “Double Decker Bus”, it was refreshing to recognise every song that played – or at least 6 seconds of it.
WE WERE BLINDED BY BLOCKS OF COLOUR
Undoubtedly colour blocking was the main character of the show. The collection itself opened with a crisp, white suit complete with matching shorts, shirt, jacket, and tie all in the same stark shade, before ushering in brighter and brighter pops of colour. Stealing everyone’s attention, we saw an array of tailored fits and matching sets each all in one colour, from crimson red or turquoise blue to the iconic Valentino pink.
AS ALWAYS, TAILORING WAS ICONIC
Harking back to Valentino’s FW23 collection – which actually featured both men’s and women’s wear – the show was an ode to tailoring. Whilst subverted with oversized denim sets and casual sneakers, Creative Director Pierpaolo Piccioli’s love for the icon of the suit reigned true. Whilst this was the brand’s first menswear show since moving away from co-ed earlier this year, it wasn’t limited by Valentino’s use of menswear staples like tailoring.
A BUNCH OF FLOWERS (NOT LITERALLY)
Valentino’s ode to the suit was juxtaposed with the refreshing embellishment of floral motifs to suit jackets, shorts, and shirts. Flowers appeared in 3D renditions with petals sticking out on suit jackets and shorts; graphic iterations blossoming across unbuttoned shirts; as well as being embroidered in sequins which glinted in the Italian sun. The playfulness of the flowers added a summery, relaxed aesthetic to the collection.
BUT THE BAGS STOLE THE SHOW
Finally, the bags. It wouldn’t be a Valentino collection without iconic accessories, and ‘The Narratives’ certainly did not disappoint. Clutched in models’ hands were smart Valentino Garavani leather bags in an array of shapes, colours, and sizes, from recognisable V-logo iterations in Valentino pink to envelope bags with wrap around wrist straps.
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