Once Upon a Runway

Red Valentino’s 2017 Resort Collection

Photo courtesy of Red Valentino — Vogue Runway

There once was a young girl. She loved her mother’s vintage heels, lunch breaks beneath the trees, and sketching under the covers long into the night. Sophisticated yet youthful, she embodies Red Valentino’s 2017 Resort collection, a storybook experience from first look to last.

The introduction began long before the dimming of the lights, as guests were whisked away to their seats in a whimsical array of abstract, tissue paper flowers and trees suspended from the ceiling. As the lights softened from a bright white to a soft pink, the chapters began to unfold in eager succession. Following a Fall 2016 ready-to-wear collection laden with darker, heavier fabrics for a more mature, edgy aesthetic, Resort’s softer silhouettes, sheer fabrics and pencil-box colors author a refreshing subtext of innocence. Several running motifs were carried throughout from the very first pieces: character-like apple trees with blinking eyes, fluttering birds and scalloped hills. Patterned in various configurations atop chunky sweaters, midi skirts, collared trench coats and flutter-sleeve tops, the themes seemed to rise from the vibrant space of the overactive imagination.

This story is no juvenile fantasy, however. As the ensembles began to mix with new additions of leopard print, pointelle mesh, indulgent fur and elegant neckties, their youthful auras acquired a certain quality of refinement and complexity. The aesthetic was now that of an older woman, colored by younger eyes. Flapper-like camisole dresses and stately costume jewelry arrived in girlish, pastel hues. The final ensemble, a sheer mini dress with black, lacey accents, studded loafers, pale pink ruffles and a bouquet of tangled leaves, returned, in full-circle ending, to its innocent origins, penned with newfound sophistication. Paying ode to the classic coming-of-age tale, Resort proves itself the hero of its own story, maturely-minded while retaining elements of the childlike imagination.

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