Giambattista Valli has learned one thing from the first round of trunk shows for his bridal collection, which is returning after a successful debut last year: his clients are ready to step it up another notch.
“I was very safe, in a way, on the first collection. They wanted something even more extraordinary from me,” he said on the sidelines of the photo shoot in Paris for the second chapter of the “Love” capsule line. “They loved the collection but they said, ‘you can go even stronger on drama.’ I mean, I love it.”
As a result, the lineup skews more body-conscious this time around, with plenty of mermaid silhouettes and ruffle accents. Valli said it reflects a new body positive mood among brides. “There is that very new generation of young girls that are getting married and they feel beautiful, they feel comfortable in it, so it’s very nice to support them,” he said.
More modest options included a statuesque, Grecian-style pleated dress with a cape back, which can be worn with or without a lace bodysuit underneath.
In addition to 15 new designs, the designer is bringing back six bestselling styles from the first season, including the Tulip dress, which was worn by Jennifer Lopez for the Los Angeles screening of her movie “Marry Me” in February. He eventually hopes to create a whole library of bridal looks.
Valli, who is preparing to mark his first decade in haute couture with a special show during Paris Couture Week in July, certainly has his work cut out for him: there’s a backlog of weddings queued up for the summer of 2022, after two years of serial postponements due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“There is a huge traffic for us — very, very nice positive business around all this euphoria,” said Valli. “In the first quarter, we did the budget of the year with the haute couture collection.”
The Love Collection n° 2 is to be sold via trunk shows in the U.S., starting Tuesday to June 4 at Bloomingdale’s in New York City, followed by Ever After Miami in Miami from June 9 to 12; LOHO Bride in Los Angeles from June 16 to 19, and Jin Wang in San Francisco from June 30 to July 3.
Further events are planned in the Giambattista Valli boutiques in Paris from June 20 to 27, and Milan from July 4 to 12. Additional trunk shows or resees will follow between September and April, mainly in the U.S. and Europe, while the brand will be available in a smattering of stores from November.
Dresses start at $12,000 and run up to $30,000, with separates starting at $3,000. “It’s for that kind of customer that doesn’t want to go up to the haute couture budget, but they really want to invest in something beautiful,” Valli said. “This is the space that we are filling with the ‘Love’ collection.”