The legacy of Valentino continues on. The new book, Valentino: Themes and Variations (Rizzoli) by Pamela Golbin with commentary from Valentino himself chronicles the history of the house as well as an in depth look of the inspirations behind the designs. The new book is a collector's item and a keepsake for every devoted fan of Valentino and the fashion industry. Find out more about the book here.
Valentino aka,Valentino Clemente Ludovico Garavani, became interested in fashion while in middle school in his native Voghera, Lombardy, Italy, when he apprenticed under his uncle Rosa and local designer Ernestina Salvadeo, an aunt of noted artist Aldo Giorgini).
At 17 Valentino moved to Paris to pursue this interest with the help of his mother Teresa de Biaggi and his father Mauro Garavani. There he studied at the Ecole des Beaux Arts and at the Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne.Valentino's international debut took place in 1962 in Florence, the Italian fashion capital of the time. His first show at the Pitti Palace was welcomed as a true revelation and the young couturier was submerged by orders from foreign buyers and enthusiastic comments on the press.
After the breakthrough show in Florence, Valentino started to dress the ladies of the international best-dressed crowd such as his acquaintance from the Paris years Countess Jacqueline de Ribes and New York socialites Babe Paley and Jayne Wrightsman.
In 1966, confident of his client base, he moved his shows from Florence to Rome and there, two years later, he had one of his greatest triumphs, an all-white collection, which became famous for the "V" logo he designed. Valentino's style can be seen as much more conservative and fixed. His concept of elegance and allure is basically an exercise in glamour for the sake of glamour itself. He will truly be missed. -Phillip R