Valentino’s Co-Creative Directors on on the Rules of Fashion and More

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Valentino’s Co-Creative Directors on on the Rules of Fashion and More


The house of Valentino is not like every other house; can you spot the differences?

One major difference is the Creative directors – yes, plural – Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli, who previously worked as accessory designers for the house. While several other houses or designers have done the same, especially recently – DKNY also appointed two creative directors this past April, Dao Yi-Chow and Maxwell Osborne of Public School, and back in March Carven did the same, hiring Alexis Martial and Adrien Caillaudaud – one so often hears of the solitary creative director at the helm of a brand or house.

Another difference is that the duo were sourced by Valentino himself – in 1999, the designer asked the pair to come work for him as accessory designers, a position they maintained until their appointment as co-creative directors in 2008. This move to Valentino came after a 10-year career as accessory designers together for Fendi. Talk about dream team.

To top it all off, this is the team that supported Ben Stiller in the announcement of the Zoolander II film earlier this year. At their fall 2015 show in Paris, Stiller and co-star Owen Wilson made headlines and caused quite the ruckus, stalking dramatically down the catwalk, pausing to take a selfie on a fan’s smartphone. Prior to the show, Stiller spoke with the creative directors, who had a few tips for him. Piccioli was adamant about footwear in his teaching, recalling the conversation to NY Mag as follows: “If you have socks, you are not fashion. He said why? And I said shush. I said, ‘You don’t try to understand. You just do not wear socks.’” He followed with a lesson on correct bag placement, saying “But do not carry your bag anywhere but here,” referring to the crook of the arm, as one might hold a pet or a small child. His explanation of the lessons were final, “If you want to be fashion, these are the rules.”

The creative directors themselves have made waves at Valentino, infusing the house with a fresh injection of certain contemporary ideas of beauty to the glamour the brand is known for. Piccioli conversed with NY Mag earlier this week, saying that, “Valentino was a very known landscape. It was the glamour, the beauty, the perfection. But, of course, ideas of beauty change over time, and perhaps what we have done is take a picture of the same landscape from a different angle. Perhaps we have shown the deepness of that kind of beauty.”

Chiuri echoed Piccioli’s sentiments, stating that “Everybody paints the same Madonna, but there is a big difference between Caravaggio and somebody else.” This comment alone shows a deeper vision of what so often sets Maison Valentino apart from all others.


Valentino’s Co-Creative Directors on on the Rules of Fashion and More

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Written by Lillie Peterson

Lillie is a graduate from UC Santa Barbara with a bachelor's in Classics and a lifelong fascination for fashion and art. A freelance writer and artist, her hobbies include photography, design, drawing and blogging.

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