It’s all too easy to be drawn into Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli’s now very much established language at Valentino, to be swept up in their unabashed but thoroughly modern romanticism. You’re in no fear that anything literal or heavy-handed would come out of referencing paintings by the Flemish masters and particularly Vermeer’s Girl with a Pearl Earring. Instead, they tapped into the serene and self-contained mood of these paintings’ subjects and injected that still calmness into the clothes. Calvinist white collars, added stately refinement to coquettish mini dresses. There was a welcome pared down sparseness to dresses in silk chine that were devoid of decoration, almost austere. Old world fabrics were dusted down and updated as we saw William Morris florals on carpet material, heavy red velvet and snow white mink made to look like old-fashioned ermine. Sweed scalloped dresses in contrasting colourways summed up Chiuri and Piccioli’s signature precise prettiness, which they have carved out for Valentino. As the dress lengths grew longer so that they grazed the ankles, Chiuri and Piccioli really used the craftsmanship of the Valentino to their advantage, amping up the embellishment. The famed blue and white Delft ceramics informed the elaborate embroidery and lace-work as well as the hues of blue. Fairytale dressing for the modern day has never seemed so enticing.