Valentino to retire from couture house

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Fashion designer Valentino has announced plans to retire in January, after nearly 50 years at the helm of the couture house.

The 75-year-old, who has dressed the likes of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Audrey Hepburn and Elizabeth Taylor, is a firm favourite for stars attending glamourous red carpet events. His conservative style has remained the same despite the commercial pressures of fashion today.

Valentino commented: “I have been lucky to have turned my teenage passion into my work...And to retain my own style, despite the big changes in the world of fashion.”

It was expected the designer would announced his retirement after hosting three days of parties to celebrate 45 years in the industry. However at the time Valentino denied he was to retire.

The new owners of the fashion house are now thought to be looking for a younger designer to reap the commercial benefits of the luxury name, with former Gucci designer Alessandra Facchinetti said to be in the running.

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