Well Documented Spring 1988 Valentino Haute Couture Silk Dress w Sweeping Dotted Train & Flower
This dress comes directly from the original couture client and is an exceptional example of Valentino's Haute Couture work that he was doing during the 1980s. Finding pieces from this time period is a rarity and I am very pleased to have this beautiful dress in the shop. I am also pleased to have found several documentations of the dress from that season. The dress is featured in the book "A Grand Italian Epic: Valentino Garavani" by Taschen, which is considered to be one of the definitive volumes on Valentino's work. It was also featured in the March issue of Italian Vogue. That layout was photoed by Steven Klein and the dress was modeled by Monica Gripman. It was also shot on model Brynja Sverris for one of the Valentino campaigns that year. This is one of his most recognizable dresses that he has ever created and you instantly recognize it as being by him the second that you see it. It is an extraordinary and historically important piece of Valentino's couture work. This would also make an exception bridal dress for the non traditional bride or as a secondary dress to change into.
This dress is extraordinary. The lines of it are pure poetry. The front of the dress has been done with a minimalist feel and its entire design is deliberate to give you just a glimpse of what will happen when you turn around. The top overlay is made of a black silk faille and the neckline is high and slightly scooped. It curves and skims over the bust and nips in gently at the waist. The shape that you see is all done with beautiful curving vertical seams so that there is no line to break the sweep of the eye. This then extends into a long panel that lays over the inner skirting. It is cut on one side with more of a curved line, while the other side is set on a slight straigher line that runs up to the the detailing at the back. This slight asymmetrical cut is fascinating and it is done so subtly that at first your eye does not see it. Instead you only see how this allows the underskirt to sweep out slightly more on one side then the other. From under that the skirt flares out and back in a tremendous sweep of fabric. The underskirt is also made out of a heavy silk faille in a creamy ivory with black dots. Many yards of silk have been used its construction and it designed to have massive volume at the back. From every angle of the dress you get these wondrous sweeping views. At the back the black silk is cut into a V and set slightly to one side. Where each side of the front overlay meet, there is a huge ivory silk flower. The lines that lead up and towards the flower are all curving perfection and the way that the black sweeps up to meet the flower is a moment in itself. The flower is huge and sits nestled in the crook of your low back. The interior of the dress is made to couture standards and is as stunning as the exterior. There are attached inner tulles that give the skirt its shape and volume. It is one of the most beautiful dresses I have seen. It is an amazing example of his earlier Haute Couture work. Excellent condition with a couple of minor notes below.
The dress is lined in a black silk and there are attached underskirts in silk tulle. It closes with an inner zipper that is attached to the underskirt with a second exterior zipper over that. Inner waist stay hooks to close. The panel where the flower is set snaps into place with hand covered silk covered snaps. I see some grubbiness at the hem and on the flower and a repair to one of the tulle underskirts at the back. Near the base of the inner zipper the fabric has come away from the seam. All of these are minor. Please review the photos provided after the label shot. Finished with Haute Couture construction techniques throughout.
Bust: 17.5" flat across from side seam to side seam
Waist: 14" flat across from side seam to side seam
Length: 58" from top of shoulder to front hem, 68" to the longest point of the back hem
Modern Sizing Equivalent: SML-MED
Reference Photos: (1) Brynja Sverris in S/S 1988 Valentino Haute Couture by Gianpaolo Barbieri. / (2-3) Monica Gripman in Valentino Haute Couture for Vogue Italia, March 1988. Photos by Steven Klein. / (4-5) S/S 1988 Valentino Haute Couture Dress as shown in the book "A Grand Italian Epic: Valentino Garavani" by Taschen. / (6-7) Queen Sofia of Spain in Valentino, meeting Queen Elizabeth, at the Palacio Real de Madrid, in Madrid, for a state banquet in Spain, 18 October 1988.
This garment has been professionally cleaned, pressed and is odor free. Thoroughly checked over before shipping, it will be ready to wear upon arrival.
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