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Fashion heavyweight Valentino is taking its newest promotional campaign to the sports world. Initial assessment? So far, so good.

The Italian fashion house known for its flamboyant takes on footwear, coats and jackets usually likes to push on the margins. Their new ads however have somewhat of an understated tone.

Led by Olympic Track & Field star Tori Bowie, the ads show several models decked out in Valentino’s latest wear. Bowie, who competes in the long jump and the 200 meters, is currently the 2017 100 meters World Champion. In other words, she knows a bit about what it takes to compete at the highest levels. Valentino’s new line has a competitive energy to it as well. Bowie and the models (including Jodie Alien, Mag Cysewska, Imari Karanja, Selena Ratner) are featured in Valentino’s 2018 Resort Collection dressed up as per the usual, but decked out in game faces. Shot in St. Vartan’s basketball court (located in New York City’s Murray Hill neighborhood) the photo shoot attempts to capture the juxtaposition of high fashion and athletic intensity. Mostly it works, if only because the clothes are so engaging and photo shoot captures the right mood.

Of course this campaign has an athleisure quality to it, which may turn off some who view it as a dated trend. To be fair, every fashion house has seemingly jumped on the athleisure bandwagon in that last couple of seasons. At this point the style is ubiquitous. That said, if this is the trend’s last hurrah, then at least it’s going out on a strong note. Valentino’s collection includes their signature emphasis on bold designs and mood-altering colors. So if you’re in the market for a new tracksuit and you have the requisite commas in your checking account, then this is where you’ll want to go.

posted on 10/23/2017 by Khalid Salaam
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