Italian fashion icon Valentino after 45 years of reining in the top of the Fashion Industry is retiring, after presenting his last collections in Paris, the statement was made from his fashion house, on September 04th 2007.
Valentino’s last pret-a-porter collection will be show cased in October, and his haute couture collection is scheduled for January. His announcement wasn’t a surprise, as everyone knew something was a drift during last July’s three-day extravaganza marking his extraordinary career dressing the world’s most beautiful and famous women.
Highlights from the letter written by Valentino, in a letter announcing his retirement.
Valentino commented about the Rome celebration saying it, “was a magic moment, one which certainly can never be repeated. It would be impossible to equal the emotions and joy I felt for the friendship and consideration that was shown to me on that occasion”.
“Thus I believe the time is right to say good bye to the world of fashion. As the English say: I’d like to leave the party when it’s in full swing,” he added.
“My future now will be full of new activities and interests. Some of these will be tied to the world of fashion. I intend to create and support institutions which promote the study of design and conserve the art of fashion. I believe this would be the best way to continue the marvelous adventure I have had the privilege to experience,” Valentino said.
Although his fashion house is based in Rome, near the Spanish Steps, Valentino has shown his haute couture collections in Paris for the last 17 years. Rome a place where Valentino had commented on more than one occasion as the city who adopted him, had made the city his home.
Last July he presented his last winter haute couture collection during the celebrity-studded celebration there. And it is in the Italian capital, “the city that adopted
me”, that a museum will be created to host the designer’s drawings and creations.
“I love Rome. It’s the only city where I truly feel at home. My headquarters have always been here, this is where I began in the Sixties, those extraordinary years of the Dolce
Vita,” Valentino was quoted to say last summer.
Valentino Garavani, was born in the industrial town of Voghera north of Milan on May 11, 1932.
Aged 17, he relocated to Paris and attended the Ecole des Beaux Arts and apprenticed with Jean Desses and Guy Laroche before opening an atelier in Rome.
His celebrity status was earned with smooth earnest, and he united with architecture student Giancarlo Giannetti, who became his lifelong companion as well as the financial brain behind his world-wide expansion.
Valentino credits Giannetti for allowing him to “live in the clouds” by keeping him away from the “day-to-day chores of life”.
Celebrity Clients. With the trademark red creations. Famous People included:
Princess Grace of Monaco, Princess Diana, Elizabeth Taylor, Audrey Hepburn and Sophia Loren. Jacqueline Kennedy wore Valentino when she married Aristotle Onassis in 1968.
In the year 2000 the American Council of Fashion Designers awarded Valentino a
Lifetime Achievement Award, which is considered the Council’s highest honor.
In 2006, he was adorned with France’s most prestigious award, becoming a member of the Legion d’Honneur.
Valentino’s Words of Wisdom.
Valentino’s claim to fame is quite simply put, he refused to follow fashion trends.
“I never offended a woman nor made her look ridiculous. I have always gone my own way and the result of this is that everyone else copies me,” he said.
“What really disturbs me about some women today is that they have so much to choose from they don’t know what to do any more. Brunettes go blonde and their hair color comes out looking like clay. They walk on these ridiculously high heels and carry those dreadful embroidered bags. I can’t stand it! Long live the simplicity of a white top and a pair of blue trousers!”
We sir are the ones with the privilege of having you father, support and love those in the Fashion Industry, and all affected by you and your house over the years. You truly are one of the most precious founders of fashion, there will never be another like you seen again, and will be dearly missed during Fashion Weeks, and on the runway.
The incons that have touched our lives in one way or another, Giorgio, Valentino, Klein, are not just fashion designers, they are people who will go down in history like Shakespear, and even Elvis. We have all had to privilege to witness these times smooth into a history where genius has created legends! If you get the opporturnity to attend an event of one of the great ones, embrace it with all your heart!
Fashion will learn from Valentino, we all have benefitted from the trends he set over the years. The fashion industry will still be under his influence long after he retires, his impression will live on. So don’t worry too much, he will never really leave us. And besides, he’s retired, but I have no doubt, he’ll still be there, it’s in his blood, it’s who he is, and he will find other outletts that is still involved in Fashion. I have a strong feeling.