Valentino: the biography of the Italian designer in today’s post

For today’s appointment we have decided to talk to you about one of the most important Italian designers of all time: we are talking about Valentino, an Italian designer whose name is inextricably linked to his brand. In this post we will talk about his life, his works, the color that bears his name.

Valentino, from Voghera to the fashion capitals

Valentino , born in Valentino Clemente Ludovico Garavani , was born in Voghera on 11 May 1932.

Immediately after graduating from middle school, he realizes that he is deeply attracted to fashion and understanding his inclination, he attends a fashion design school in Milan, which subsequently leads him to enroll at the School of Stylism of La Chambre Syndacale de la Couture in Paris.

If it is Voghera who discovers this vocation thanks to the work of the stylist Ernestina Salvadeo , and in Paris that everything is confirmed. A city full of ideas, ideas and ferment in which she perfected herself, working, in the 1950s, in the Jean Desses fashion house and in the atelier of Guy Laroche .

It is also during a holiday in Barcelona that Valentino has a shock, a love for the red color, which for the designer becomes iconic, fully representing femininity.

Some time later from this love, Rosso Valentino was born , a mix of many different shades of red, ranging from purple, carmine red, bright red, dark red. This shade becomes his trademark.


Valentino’s 1950s: the opening of his maison in Rome

In the meantime, during the 1950s he worked and personally met important women, whom he dresses with his creations: from Michelle Morgan to Queen Federica of Greece Maria Felix , Viscountess Jaqueline de Ribes, Francoise Arnoul, Marie Helene Arnault, Brigitte Bardot, Jane Founds up to the mannequin model Bettina .

Valentino Garavani understands, however, that collaborations are no longer enough for him: he wants to be something more, he wants to be fully himself and so he decides to open his own fashion house in 1957 in a company, getting financially financed by his father.

Unfortunately for Valentino, however, this turns out to be an adventure which, for various reasons, including the financial one (the Italian designer spares no expense and wastes money by not managing to manage it economically in the best possible way), does not end in the best way. 

The meeting with Giancarlo Giammetti and the relaunch of the maison

The designer Valentino does not give up, and his lifelong partner, Giancarlo Giammetti , also realizes it at this point , who decides to support him, personally following the economic part of the new company and leaving the designer the exclusive task of creating and do what he did best: bring magic, luxury and beauty by designing clothes.

It is 1959 and the Maison Valentino opens its doors in Rome , in the famous Via Condotti, a cenacle of luxury, prestige and creativity. Via della Moda, which becomes his creative home and supported by his partner, finally comes success and international fame.

In 1962 his collection triumphed at Pitti Moda and from that moment Valentino Garavani was consecrated as one of the most visionary, masterful and excellent masters of world fashion .

Vogue France celebrates the Italian designer right now by dedicating two pages of his glossy magazine to him.

In this wake the “Valentino pret a porter” was born , the event that definitively launches it and makes it known even in the world of non-professionals.

The Marquis Giorgini then grants him the last hour of the last day of Haute Couture fashion shows at Palazzo Pitti, a presentation that ends with ovation and jubilation from those present.

By now the stylist is in the Olympus of the great Italian and international fashion, so much so that they decide to dress Valentino divas of the caliber of Jacqueline Kennedy and Princess Paola of Liège.

The internationalization of the Valentino brand and Warhol’s work

The 60s and 70s saw the undisputed protagonist of the Italian designer Valentino, who appears on the covers of Time and Life, and began to spread internationally, thanks to licensing agreements with manufacturing companies for the production and marketing of fashion lines that bear his name.

The years from 1962 to 1967 have been of work and consecration, creation and worldwide diffusion, so much so as to allow the designer to obtain, in 1967, the coveted recognition of the Neiman Marcus Prize , which immediately takes him to the heights of the Olympus of international couturiers . .

1967 also saw another epic turning point: the first Valentino Men’s collection . Therefore, it is no longer only women who can be dressed by his magic, but men from all over the world can also access exclusive and one of the most refined fashion.

The 1970s brought a widespread expansion of the Valentino ateliers and new boutiques opened in the cities of Tokyo, Paris, New York, Geneva and Lausanne.

To underline the extraordinary presence of the Italian designer in the USA, the mayor of Beverly Hills even organizes a ” Valentino’s day “, celebrating his splendid creations in America and on that occasion giving him the golden keys of the city.

In 1971 he was portrayed by Andy Warhol and in the 1980s he was awarded the titles of Grand Officer of the Order of Merit and Knight of the Grand Cross. 

The 90s and 2000s for Valentino

The 90s continue in the wake of previous decades, with the Italian designer continuing to receive important awards and honors, such as in 1996 when he was awarded the title of Cavaliere del Lavoro, and in 2006 that of the Legion of Honor, the most important honor of the French Republic.

Since the end of the 90s, the Maison Valentino has seen some changes at the corporate level, up to 2007 , the year in which Valentino Garavani gives his farewell to the world of fashion . In fact, on that occasion he sold his brand and his company to the German Hdp.

I have decided this is the perfect time to say goodbye to the fashion world .

In his private life Valentino has been linked for many years to his partner Giancarlo Giammetti (living in Paris) , with whom he founded LIFE , an association for information and the fight against AIDS, for which he has repeatedly organized fundraising and charitable works to carry out research and thus eradicate this deadly disease, which causes millions of deaths every year, especially in the poorest areas of our planet.


Valentino Garavani was perhaps the most important Italian designer of all time and despite his venerable age and retirement from the scene, he still remains the icon of Italian fashion in the world , thanks to his splendid creations that have kept the name of the Italy abroad.