"I'm a label that wants to sell. I believe in clothes," Giambattista Valli said on the phone from Paris today. It sounds obvious, but some designers lose the plot. Not Giamba; for him, the customer has always come first, and his Resort collection is no exception. He called it Urban Jungle, focusing on tropical and animal prints and keeping his silhouettes uncomplicated. The magic, as usual, was in the mix of patterns and textures. A simple halter dress combined a palm frond print with a micro leopard, a gold-flecked ivory jacquard, and black grosgrain ribbon trim; on another sleeveless shift, a wine red ribbon bisected a palm-print bodice and a paisley skirt.
If there was a shade too much attention paid to shorts, his pants had a flatteringly high-waisted, full-through-the-thigh cut, and jackets had an on-trend belted and peplumed shape. Valli, as anybody who clocked Diane Kruger's gown at Cannes' Moonrise Kingdom premiere knows, is a master of after-dark drama. Here, he mostly reined it in, preferring evening separates to full-on gowns. A bordeaux chiffon poet-sleeve blouse and matching floor-length skirt finished with a gold bow belt was long on charm.