To say the Valentino Spring 2014 collection was opulent would be a huge understatement. The collection shown today during Paris Fashion Week featured ornately decorated pieces influenced heavily by the Roman opera. Starting with light classical music, the show opened to a romantic and old-world notion of beauty and regality that we haven't seen on the runway this year.
While modern collections have been dropping current trends left and right onto the runway, Valentino is staying true to its own style and opting instead for heavy drama and classic shapes that make the entire collection timeless. Pieces are kept modern with sheer panels and thigh-baring lengths, allowing the dresses to stay away from looking too frumpy. The blend of tradition and modernity is executed perfectly.
With operatic music playing throughout the show, including O Mio Babbino Caro and aria Casta Diva, the entire tone was set and the dresses appeared almost royal coming down the runway, conjuring up images of princess and queens in eras long gone by. While I could state the obvious and tell you the collection would be hard to pull off in any real-world capacity, it's clear that these pieces are meant for galas, red carpets and the Oscars.
Influenced by the traditions and techniques of the opera, layers, detailing and embroidery are used to portray this feeling of opulent grandeur—something bigger than itself manifested through the beauty of the garment. And while some may find the splendor stifling or restrictive in an entire collection, the feeling of timeless beauty that they convey outweighs any need for current trends.