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Giambattista Valli Couture Fall Winter 2012 Paris
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Giambattista Valli Couture Fall Winter 2012 Paris

The designer Giambattista Valli took the fashion world down a garden path. His collection was so powerfully influenced by the best that Mother Nature has to offer that you could almost smell the scent of roses wafting up from a floral print dress.

It was a collection that bloomed with ruffles, shimmered as if some of the flower-patterned dresses had been covered in morning dew and came crawling with golden insects that wrapped the wrist or scurried about the waist. Once again  Valli shows himself to be highly creative when it comes to prints. He blended a myriad of floral images into the prints to give them an abstract grace.

Each look in this show was a study in volume. Large swaths of fabric rippled down sleeves. A jacket came outfitted with mille-feuille layers at the waist. Dresses were constructed with a bulbous front and a formfitting back.

But somehow the excessive shapes toppled this collection over. They often looked bulky rather than beautiful. The show overall felt more fitted to the fashions of the 1950s than 2013. It is a shame really as Valli is an incredibly talented designer who rightfully has a large following of dedicated clients. And that gift will be appreciated by those who will snap up some of the designer’s quieter pieces in this collection like the grass green bustier ball dress or the tea dress that fluttered with lace appliqué leafs.

-Jessica Michault