Fashion: The New Valentino

First he stopped in Dallas to pick up the Neiman-Marcus award as the year's most original dress designer. Then he went on to Palm Beach, where Martha's, an exclusive salon with shops in Florida and New York, bestowed a similar award. In Manhattan, 400 socialites turned out to see his clothes at a benefit cocktail party on the St. Regis roof for the Committee to Rescue Italian Art.

By the time he flew back to Rome last week, order book overflowing from his 20-day U.S. tour, Valentino, 34, had clearly emerged as the new...

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