Valentino Garavani - A Grand Italian Epic
I've always admired the work of Valentino. I mean, who hasn't? Even if you are not a fashion addict, he makes you take notice of the women he dresses because they look utterly beautiful. His exquisite gowns are impeccably made and exude a classic sophistication just from his use of color alone. I not too long ago saw his movie, Valentino The Last Emperor, and loved it. I enjoyed his story, his work ethic and dedication to long time design partner Giancarlo Giammetti. Just being able to witness his creative journey was a treat. But I was a bit taken back by the ups and downs with the business side of fashion. That aspect of fashion was like a soap opera.
I recently stumbled upon the Collector's Edition of his book, Valentino - A Grand Italian Epic ($1800). Appropriately so, the autographed book is housed in a silk box in his signature vibrant red color and is a historical overview of Valentino's rise as one of the most respected and celebrated dressmakers. There are over 700 pages of all things Valentino. His drawings, documentary photographs, magazine shoots, advertisements and of course portraits of Valentino. In addition to all of the eye candy, the book includes Vanity Fair writer Matt Tyrnauer interviews with 20 of the designer's closet collaborator and friends. While I can't justify buying a book for $1800, I can justify the more affordable version of $70.