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Spring ’14 evening wear looks sporty

Renee Minus White | 12/13/2013, 2:39 p.m.
From the looks of Carmen Marc Valvo’s spring ’14 collection
Spring ‘14 designs by Carmen Marc Valvo

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Spring ‘14 designs by Carmen Marc Valvo

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Spring ‘14 designs by Carmen Marc Valvo

From the looks of Carmen Marc Valvo’s spring ’14 collection, shown at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week, evening styles are taking on a sporty look. There were even some athletic cuts in the mix, which included scuba, athletic mesh and leather pieces alongside his evening wear. The look was modern and refreshing.

His collection captured a cultural collision of traditional patterns in a monochromatic palette that created the illusion of computer graphics. When paired with high-tech fabrications, accents like glass beads and pewter paillettes added further contrast to Valvo’s textual nuances. Transparency continues in a sporty vein in this collection. Scuba stripes are used to expose more than just a glint of skin, allowing sexy peeks of backs and legs.

In the fabrics and details, athletic mesh and black leather are used in conjunction with elaborate embroideries. This creates more of a hard-edged sophistication. Elongated torsos abound throughout the collection, allowing a freedom to play with proportions as well as textures.

Valvo grew up in a traditional Spanish/Italian family in Westchester County, N.Y. His artistic spirit was revealed at an early age. He had a passion for oil painting and crafted opulent medieval costumes for his sister for a school project. Later in his life, he considered becoming a fashion designer. “I honestly didn’t think it was a real profession,” he admitted.

In the beginning, he worked with Nina Ricci in Paris, followed by a stint at Christian Dior. With only a few thousand dollars, he launched his own label in 1989. His tailoring is superb, and he understands the issues of fit and masters details, which has distinguished him from his peers.

Today, Valvo’s fashions are in stores like Saks Fifth Avenue and Neiman Marcus. His couture collections are presented twice a year during fashion weeks. These lavish presentations highlight the extraordinary craftsmanship and painstaking hand-detailing that places Valvo’s couture collection in a league of its own. His reputation is solid, and his designs are worn by Vanessa Williams and other stars.