105 Grant Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94108
Monday to Saturday 10-6
Valentino left Paris in 1959 to open a fashion house in Rome. He modeled his business on the grand houses he had seen in Paris. In his early shows, Valentino quickly gained recognition for his red dresses, in a shade that became widely known as “Valentino red.”
In 1960, Valentino met Giancarlo Giammetti in Rome. Giammetti, an architecture student, quickly became Valentino’s partner, both professionally and romantically. Together, the pair developed Valentino SpA into an internationally recognized brand.
Among Valentino’s most prominent clients was Jacqueline Kennedy. Kennedy developed an interest in the designer’s work after admiring friends in several Valentino ensembles. In 1964, Kennedy ordered six dresses in black and white, which she wore during the year following the assassination of her husband, President John F. Kennedy. She would remain a friend and a client from that point on, linking the Valentino name to her own iconic status in the fashion world. Valentino also designed the dress that Kennedy wore when she wed Greek shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis in 1968.
Valentino’s client list included the Begum Aga Khan, Queen Paola of Belgium and movie stars Elizabeth Taylor and Audrey Hepburn.