It was a lightning strike, an illumination, a revelation – an inspiration. Valentino Garavani was literally dazzled. “I had one of the biggest shocks of my life in Barcelona: as a student I was invited to the Barcelona Opera and, enthralled, I saw a woman with grey hair in one of the boxes, very beautiful, dressed in red velvet. Among all the colors worn by the other women, she looked unique, isolated in her splendor. I never forgot her. She became the red goddess. Fabulous. I think that a woman dressed in red is always magnificent. She is the perfect image of the heroine in the middle of a crowd.”
The young Valentino was long fascinated by the cinematic universe, whether it was Hollywood, the sparkling glamour of ‘Dolce Vita’, or the exquisite grace of actresses. “This is how I began to have a limitless admiration for symbolic women like Lana Turner, Rita Hayworth, Ava Gardner, Marlene Dietrich. Especially Marlene in Seven Sinners, Greta Garbo in Queen Christina.” And so the Valentino heroine is dressed in red, but not just any red – a red that’s unique to the distinguishing touch of a couturier that designs and creates only for romantics. This is how the essence of Valentino style was constructed: a passion for red, a fascinating symbol of life, death, love, strength in the face of despair, and a design called rococo – exquisite adornments developed using a sculpted base, nothing more, nothing less.
Valentino composes his Red like a captivating mix of magenta, yellow, and black – it’s flashy but also very becoming. This is just like his dresses, the first of which appeared in 1959 in his very first collection: a cocktail dress with a pink tulle skirt called ‘Fiesta’. Ever since, a red dress has always been systematically included in Valentino’s collections. “A red dress is more than a way of telling something, it’s synonymous with style,” confides the couturier. Served well by a palette of voluptuous colors: scarlet red, fiery red… Since 1959, this Italian brand has been paying homage to the color of life. It even made it the theme of the “Shanghai” collection dedicated to China . Valentino also uses flat tints of bright colors to transfigure the shape of his dresses. whether short or long and diaphanous , choosing a Valentino dress means choosing distinction. Valentino Red delights women the world over since it “makes them sensational. When a woman dressed in Valentino red arrives to the party, everybody looks at her.” This is the magic of Valentino Red – the power to turn a woman into the romantic heroine of her own life story.