The Valentino creative director and London menswear designer discuss their process reimagining the Roman brand’s signature rockstud.
The Valentino rockstud has become a brand icon. To mark its tenth anniversary, creative director Pierpaolo Piccioli teamed up with British menswear designer Craig Green to create a sneaker adorned with the Valentino symbol. It was a collaboration forged over Zoom during the pandemic, with Piccioli based in Rome and Green in East London. On this week’s episode of The BoF Podcast, editor-at-large Tim Blanks speaks with Piccioli and Green about creative collaboration and reimagining design icons.
When collaborating, designers’ differences can often offer the best source of creative inspiration, says Green. “A collaboration works best when it’s from two separate worlds coming together and seeing what can be born out of that.”
Shifting meaning while upholding tradition has been Piccioli’s mantra. The new sneaker aims to honour Valentino’s heritage and traditions, but also find the power in reinterpreting an established symbol. “I want to use the same objects, the same signs, but I want to give them a different meaning,” says Piccioli.
Above all, collaboration is an education. “I think with every collaboration and with every person that you work with, especially working with someone like Pierpaolo, you learn a lot,” says Green. “You kind of inevitably change in the future what you plan to do.”