Talitha Getty and Peggy Guggenheim: Giambattista Valli’s muses this season were as Giambattista Valli as they come, but also a tad more exotic and bohemian than usual. When the familiar classical music playing before the show and the chattering of Royal-related guests died down, the African-inspired soundtrack by Frédéric Sanchez foretold a punchy collection. The first look, all black and white, had an unusual simplicity to it: no sequins, no embroideries, only a structured ruffled detail at the bottom of the tunic. Eventually the floral embroideries appeared on a sheer coat-and-cigarette trouser ensemble fringed with pale pink feathers, and on an entirely sequinned, ultra shiny disco trouser. The African influences were clear in the Maasai-inspired earrings and in a silver-fringed maxi dress, but there were also touches of the more classic Giamba. The ballerina tulle dresses embroidered with flower petals felt less interesting and pretty much unwearable for anyone not built like a couture model. In comparison, the acid-coloured macramé A-line mini dresses felt a whole lot fresher, and more exciting.
There were some looks in brocade chintz motifs, sometimes embellished, which created an intriguing conversation between the simplicity of the pattern and the luxury of the sequins. If the finale pieces (wow pieces and people pleasers, granted) of heavy-looking milefeuille tulle skirts felt somewhat anticlimactic, they did not take away the charm of the easier (and more manageable) sequinned and perforated tunic-cum-trouser looks which proved that, for Giambattista Valli, less (at least relatively speaking) is more.