PARIS, October 4, 2006 - Valentino's program notes spoke of a new vision for the label, but the pieces that fluttered down the catwalk on Wednesday betrayed that prose as a marketing ploy. The rhinestone band of a nude satin empire dress, over-sized sunglasses used to put out the flash of a silver lamé jacket, a top tied up with a gigantic yellow bow - all of that looked like what it was, vintage Valentino.

A new breeze was blowing elsewhere, however. The simple elegance of a scalloped white satin dress, the exquisite layering of a pink tulle skirt, the fluffy stole-like tops, or the kiss of modern lavender prints spoke a new language that was both elegant and refreshing.

Of the newly-styled evening dresses, the most convincing was a signature poppy-red fluttering organza piece, bow tied meticulously over one shoulder.

The sixty eight piece collection seemed long and a tad repetitive. If some of the front row was reduced to photographing clothes to ward of restlessness, they were unaware that most of the audience was watching them to ward of restlessness.

One four hundred pound gorilla provided his own show by attempting to shield tiny Janet Jackson from an onslaught of paparazzi. That was certainly a welcome diversion for the real life star of "The Devil Wears Prada", Anna Wintour, who sat front row In Cognito.

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