It was a presentation seeped in romance, as Pierpaolo Piccioli and Maria Grazia Chiuri showed the Valentino Haute Couture Autumn/Winter 15 collection at the site of their inspiration – Rome. Referring to a modern-day Italian renaissance, the designers gushed about the abundance of beauty that they found on their own doorstep, choosing to reveal the show at Rome's Piazza Mignanelli, home to the Valentino headquarters and new store, and afterwards at the Villa Aurelia, perched on Gianicolo Hill overlooking the city.
"Everything is getting so global, it's very important sometimes to be very local to talk about your identity," Piccioli said. The Roman influence of the collection shone through imperial aesthetics and gladiatorial details, and romance infused every look through delicate lace, and poetic movement. 
Chiuri and Piccioli opted for a predominantly dark palette, with more than half of the collection in black, but they avoided any sombre associations. Instead the palette translated as elegant and classical and the fabric choices, design details and elegant silhouettes, ensured that a lightness pervaded.