Valentino Couture Spring 2010: The Perfect Storm II
This is a collection in desperate search of a rudder. It's drifting, taking on water and slowly sinking under its own weight of non direction. Piccioli and Chiuri, the design team at the helm are lost in a dense , enveloping fog. From all the way over here, I can hear the rumble of a not so distant rogue wave building steadily. The dinghy which used to be an ocean liner is looking like it's about to stand straight up and topple over backwards. A Garden of Eden in Cyberspace may have been the inspiration in the program notes, but it looks and feels much more like a sequel to the Perfect Storm with Avataraffectations. Even a few god-forsaken allusions to the toothsome sister act out of Pasadena was cloyingly evident.
The work rooms of Valentino must be sad to have such banal and false start creations to run off. The traditional hand tucking and draping techniques of the ateliers are called upon but all to unflattering effect. Part of the time it looks like derivative,vintage Mary McFadden or generic eveningwear. The more I see the more I think the bosses made a hasty decision firing Ms. Facchinetti. She had taste and an imagination with a clear thread or vein. This has become an uncomfortable display of thrashing design schizophrenia. You know it's bad when the designers take their bow and look better dressed than the 37 looks you just saw.