Before the moment in which Zoolander actors Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson reprised their roles as Derek Zoolander and Hansel McDonald in a live 'walk-off' (and what will now go down in history as the most epic show finale of all time), Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli paraded a stunning line-up that was both strong and graphic as well as soft and romantic. This duality came from the design duo's inspiration of Emilie Louise Flöge and Celia Birtwell, who were at once muses and artists in their own right despite being linked to famous men (Gustav Klimt and Ossie Clark, respectively).
Ensembles in Op Art black and white checks and stripes kicked off the proceedings - tunics and sheaths came in midi proportions, sometimes featuring box pleats in the contrasting colour, other times layered under chunky knits or long coats. The result was edgy, razor-sharp and clean-cut. In contrast was the opulent line-up that followed: floral and butterfly prints decorated whispy chiffon column dresses in shades of gold and ivory shot through with metallic thread to look positively gleaming. More dresses, ranging in length from mini to midi, came with austere high necks and strips of lace in Klimt-esque shades of russet, gold, pale blue and sage green. The mix of delicate materials like tulle, chiffon and lace with tougher fabrics like felt and leather carried on the theme of duality. Outerwear comprised multi-coloured, tufty furs that looked light as air, and rigid leather capes that zipped all the way up, restricting arms to their interiors.
The Medieval-style princess gowns the creative directors have become known for this time boasted tiered tulle skirts, ruffled sleeves and fly-away chiffon trains, and were more desirable than ever. For the label's accessories lovers, high-shine leather calf-length boots with zips snaking up the fronts and structured shoulder bags grounded the line-up.
Who we saw: Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson, reprising their roles of Derek Zoolander and Hansel McDonald. On the front row, Olivia Palermo and her husband, Johannes Huebl.
What they wore: Valentino get-ups for the Zoolander 'models', a tweed jacket for Olivia and a suit for Johannes.
In a nutshell: Simplicity meets Opulence (with a side of Zoolander).
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