What is the difference between RED Valentino and Valentino and Valentino Garavani? We break it down, first with details of the legendary designer and his signature color
“For the Valentino maison, red is not just a colour. It’s a non-fading mark, a logo, an iconic element of the brand, a value.” – Valentino
In the fashion world, “red” and “Valentino” are synonymous: the iconic hue, entitled Rosso Valentino has been the legendary Italian designer’s signature since the debut of his first collection in 1959.
A blend of 100 percent magenta, 100 percent yellow and 10 percent black, it embodies elegance, passion, and energy. Valentino’s youthful diffusion line, RED Valentino, bears the name of this very color.
So what differentiates the two lines? And how did the brand and its lines come to be? Let’s take a look at the origins of the label.
Valentino: The Origins
Valentino Clemente Ludovico Garavani was born in Voghera, northern Italy, in 1932. Growing up, he apprenticed under his aunt Rosa and other local designers, developing an interest in fashion. He later decided to pursue this interest by moving to Paris and studying at the École des Beaux-Arts and at the Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne.
While in Paris, the young designer apprenticed for Jacques Fath, Balenciaga, Jean Dessès, and Guy Laroche. In 1959, he decided to return to Italy and open his own atelier in Rome, on Via Condotti. A year later, he met Giancarlo Giammetti.
The two became involved both romantically and professionally, and together they grew the brand into a global fashion empire: with clients such as Audrey Hepburn, Elizabeth Taylor, and Jacqueline Kennedy, the designer and his iconic evening dresses quickly became synonymous with Italian glamour, luxury, and timeless romanticism.
What is RED Valentino?
RED is the Roman maison’s contemporary and more accessible-priced diffusion line for women, launched in 2003. Its name (a clear nod to the designer’s signature color) is actually an acronym that stands for Romantic Eccentric Dress.
With RED, the Italian luxury fashion house aims to reach a younger audience, offering a fresh urban take on its refined designs. The line is bold, modern, and youthful, but still embodies the exquisitely feminine spirit of the parent brand. Expect simple cuts, floral prints, sheer finishes, and luxurious fabrics.
As the name suggests, romantic and eccentric dresses are at the core of the RED collection. The FW21 collection includes a whimsical floral print lace dress, a chic star print lace dress, and a bold perforated knit dress. Tulle, lace, embroidery, bows…RED Valentino incorporates stylistic elements of the main collection with a distinctive contemporary edge.
You’ll also find blouses, skirts, leather jackets, and accessories. This season, we love the bow hair clip and the black satin headband: simple accessories that will elevate any outfit, and for a small price, too! Other favorites include the biker boots, the hobo nylon shoulder bag, and the double-breasted checked Shetland wool coat.
A perfect mix of timeless elegance and modernity, RED Valentino continues to appeal because of its sophisticated yet urban aesthetic, and its use of premium quality materials. Today, RED Valentino is led by Pierpaolo Piccioli.
How do Valentino and RED Valentino fit?
Does Valentino run small or large? And what about RED Valentino?
Here’s what you need to know about the brand’s sizing:
- Both apparel lines use Italian sizing.
- Valentino apparel is available in women’s IT 36 to IT 50, and men’s IT 44 to 58. Valentino denim uses the brand’s own sizing system. It comes in sizes 24 to 36 for women, and 28 to 42 for men. Valentino footwear comes in half sizes: women’s IT 34 to 41.5, and men’s IT 30 to IT 48.
- RED Valentino is more inclusive when it comes to sizes. RED Valentino apparel is available in women’s IT 34 to IT 52. RED footwear comes in half sizes: women’s IT 34 to 42.5.
- Generally, both lines fit true to size.
- When buying denim, the brand suggests going one size up if you’d prefer them to be longer by 2 cm (example: denim size 30 and 31 have the same waist and hip measurement, size 31 will be 2 cm longer than size 30).
- Before you purchase a piece online, we recommend comparing measurements to a similar item you already own.
At italist.com, we have Valentino main line for women, Valentino Garavani shoes and accessories for women, RED Valentino clothing and accessories for women. Shop italist and save up to 40%—every day.