Valentino Haute Couture Fall 2013 is all in the details, quite literally. With pieces that required upwards of 800 hours of handwork, this curiosity cabinet-inspired collection lends itself to a closer look. References ranged from coral branches to early Renaissance Madonnas as Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Picciolo brought uniquely Italian touches to the house's presentation. Gold overlaid lace and coral-embroidered gowns played off deceptively simple pieces like a camel dress-and-coat set and a rich red satin dress.
The dominant shape for day is a boldly rounded dolman shoulder over a narrower A-line body — cool enough for the It girls in the front row, but wearable enough for the more mature couture purchaser. And will Valentino's Hollywood fan base find dresses for every event? Yes, yes, and we have some suggestions if one needs help narrowing it down.