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Delft Designs at Valentino

Backstage at the Valentino Fall/WInter 2013 show

This week in Paris current Valentino designers Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli showed an exquisite Fall/Winter 2013 collection heavily inspired by Dutch painters, namely Vermeer. In this collection, with its restrained high necklines and prim A-line shapes, the designers told Vogue.com they wanted to create a focus on the face, citing the “calm and serene portraits of women” for which the Dutch masters are best known.




Though with such a striking, yet subtle collection, onlookers could hardly focus on the face. With the scalloped necklines, Valentino reds, china blues and rich embroideries, it was impossible to look anywhere but at the beauty of the garments.


One particularly striking group of looks was inspired by the white and blue patterns found on Delft ceramics, an art form native to the birthplace of Vermeer.  This is the same pattern that inspired Mr. Valentino’s Fall/Winter 1968 haute couture collection. In fact, the image of the maestro’s initial designs, when the dresses were photographed by Henry Clark for American Vogue in 1968, appeared on present-day designers moodboard backstage at this week’s runway show.


The resulting dresses shown on the Fall/Winter 2013 runway referenced a 400-year-old inspiration, revived a 45-year-old design, and painted the perfect portrait of an utterly modern woman.


Photo credits: Backstage at Valentino Fall/Winter 2013 by Mimi Ritzen Crawford for Vogue.com. Valentino Fall/Winter 2013 moodboard via Carlos Souza’s Instragram. Valentino Fall/Winter 1968 photographed for the Valentino Garavani Virtual Museum. Valentino Fall/Winter 2013 runway by Yannis Viamos for Style.com.


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