Re-radical and unpredictable

Valentino is no stranger to outrageous and unapologetically bold prints. (Which I think is part of their strategy of street-style domination and to minimize/deter counterfeiting.) They teamed up with Memphis Group member, Nathalie du Pasquier, to create the ‘Counting prints‘ for their Fall 2017 collection.

Some background on the Memphis Group can be found from this video below.

This design group that defined the look of the 80s, had some crazy furniture designs and insane pattern-on-pattern-on-pattern creations. Some funky, some timeless and others plain old kooky. With this Valentino collection, the kookiness still remains but uses more sophisticated, tertiary colours – browns, teals, tangerine and bubblegum/flamingo pink.

I’m not crazy about the colour pink. But I think the pink and teal photographs very well together. In any case, while looking up pictures of the Memphis Group. I came across some pictures of their furniture and think it looks so kooky-amazing. And usually I’m not super into homeware and furniture. But since I’m starting the process of doing up my abode at the moment, I’ve been trawling the world wide web (especially Pinterest) for home decor ideas and inspiration. So this topic seems especially relevant now.

The Memphis Group’s furniture reminds me of Vice & Vanity’s work. With the bright colours and intersection of plains, shapes, materials. (On a side note, how is Vice & Vanity???)

Anyway, leap frogging into another art-meets-design homeware piece. My recent internet trawling brought me to this – the ‘Red and Blue Chair’ by Gerrit Rietveld. Can you imagine this chair design is nearly 100 years old (designed in 1918)?! According to Wikipedia (via MoMA) the primary colours were added in 1923. Its described as a “floating chair”, when placed in front of a black wall. Which makes sense. But it just screams Piet Mondrian to me.

 

Credits: Red&Blue chair, Memphis Group furniture, Valentino

Eclectic Character

Valentino Spring 2015

Valentino’s Spring/Summer 2015 collection has my brow furrowed and left me in a permanent state of ponder-ment. All I can say is creative directors Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli, who’ve been at the helm since 2008, have a very broad idea of who the Valentino woman is. A segment of their collection presents, in sharp contrast with the rest of the collection, a strikingly vibrant and graphic mix of checkerboard, stripes and chevrons.

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While I can’t immediately relate to this woman they are portraying. It does hold a certain amount of intrigue and, dare I say, shock factor as well. My personal colour milestone lies with a tee from hansel’s Tiers of Joy collection, and Valentino’s collection for 2015 is several leagues away. This young grasshopper pays dutiful respect to the master. *bows*

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(By the way, I certainly hope that those fur coats I spy are all faux.)

Perhaps this segment of the collection represents the younger end of the spectrum for the Valentino customer. One that, arguably, may crossover into the sphere of REDvalentino instead.

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In addition to the bold use of colour and print for Spring/Summer 2015, Valentino’s lookbook showcases a dynamic spread of looks and, I feel, characters. Some of whom I relate to much more than others. Clearly these printed glamazons aren’t part of my apparel choice’s fray, neither are the embroidered dresses and skirts with floral motifs, nor the lace maxi dresses (with or without embroidery). The latter conjures imagery of what my grandma may have worn to church as a young lady. Don’t get me wrong, the pieces are undeniably beautiful and striking, but I think the climate, both in terms of weather and trends, may not be most suited for it.

But granted that the key inspiration came from Meixcan artist, Frida Kahlo, its no wonder the collection incorporates vibrant colour, sweet flora and fauna iconography and an infusion of the culture (and religion?)

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I suppose its my penchant for all things structured, clean and simple. The billowy options and short sweet dresses is a spoonful of sugar too much. In any case, here are my favourite looks from the mash-up of characters presented. And I hope LN-CC stocks my favourites for next season. Just so I can cry at the prices on these beauties.

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Image Credit: Valentino

Lemony Snicket’s Animal Illustrations

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Valentino’s Fall 2014 Alice in Wonderland/Queen of Hearts print has gotten a lot more limelight and editorial coverage. But I’ve just discovered their other, more beautiful, print which features a mishmash of various animals on pure silk. The print almost looks embroidered and perhaps because of the inclusions of ferns, flying fish, flamingoes and what look like fire-breathing dinosaurs, reminds me of a cross between the whimsical world of Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events and the more classical natural history illustrations.

The collection is available on LN-CC.com

I’m eyeing the pant in this print. But at S$1,650, I think I’ll stick to ogling from afar for now.

 

Making Women Beautiful – Valentino

It is a gem of an opportunity, culmination of luck and good fortune, to be a stiletto’s shadow away from a couture piece. And it’ll take your breathe away when you enter into the Valentino Retrospective exhibition space and be graced by the elegance of one hundred haute couture Valentino masterpieces at RWS, running from 22 December 2010 to 13 February 2011.

As you soak in the details of each garment, maybe, like me, you’ll get a feeling of wonder and fantasy at the notion that perhaps, just maybe, each custom mannequin comes to life when the lights go off and have the most brilliant midnight soiree amongst themselves.

Aside from his iconic Valentino Red gowns, the curators have painstakingly sourced the world over for vintage pieces from the archives of icons such as Jackie O, Audrey Hepburn and Elizabeth Taylor. As a result, the exhibition showcases a diverse repertoire of materials and workmanship by the Valentino house.

Out of the 100 garments on display, ninety-five were designed by Valentino himself, before he retired and are distinguided by the silver of the mannequins. Five designed by current Creative Directors Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pier Paolo Piccioli are marked by the gold mannequins donning their design (not shown in this post).

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Valentino, Retrospective: Past/Present/Future

22 December 2010 – 13 February 2011

Resorts World Sentosa

$12 (adult), $6 (child)

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*Guided tours are available on Wednesdays at 7.30pm and Sundays 11.30am

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The kind people at RWS are sponsoring two lucky readers a pair of ticket each! Simply answer this question:

How many couture garments are on display in the Valentino, Retrospective?

Leave your answer in the comments or on twitter @wearewottoncool. Competition ends on 31 December 2010 at midnight! Hurry!

*Winners will be picked at random and contacted for further information on how to collect your tickets. Contest is open to the beautiful people residing in sunny Singapore (:

Voluptuous

Excuse us while we turn on the lazy on this blog while the crazy goes on in school.

We all know a gorgeous red bag when we see one. It’s stunning. Like the Petale Dome bag by Valentino.

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It’s great, and it will sure as hell sell.

It’s THAT red. It’s soft nappa leather, ruffles, ruffles in the shape of a rose, and in a size that can actually fit more than an iPhone or blackberry (which apparently is ALLL you need today and everyday, but of which I have neither..)

But somehow, it doesn’t hold a candle to this juicy, voluptuous red magic of a bag by Chai@headquarters.

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It’s seems to be in an even better shade of red. Its haphazard ruffles totally trumps roses. You almost don’t have to wear anything else with this bag. You can just… wear it!

I’m sold. Unfortunately, it won’t be sold to me… because since I can’t afford an iPhone or blackberry, neither can I afford the weight of S$680 on my shoulder.

There’s only ONE piece available in Singapore. This is more covetable than the petale dome. Serious.

Available at ARC, Esplanade, from April.

More about ARC here.