PARIS — American clients have been scarce almost everywhere this week, but most couture houses cited regular to healthy attendance at the shows, which ended Thursday. "Our attendance was about the same," said Farida Khelfa, director of couture...
PARIS — American clients have been scarce almost everywhere this week, but most couture houses cited regular to healthy attendance at the shows, which ended Thursday. "Our attendance was about the same," said Farida Khelfa, director of couture at Jean Paul Gaultier. "Usually we have more American clients, but we had more Europeans this time, so that made up for it."
Asked to account for the decline in the numbers of Americans, she replied: "It’s obvious. The international situation is tense. People are scared." American couture faithful Suzanne Saperstein said she had noticed "a lot fewer Americans than there used to be." Then she added, "People are concerned about the situation around the world right now. But I don’t want someone using fear tactics to dictate to me what I can do and where I can travel."
As for clients from the Middle East — where the growing possibility of war in Iraq has cast a pall — houses said they have stayed at home, too. But that’s not unusual, since many customers from the region avoid being seen in public.
A spokeswoman at Emanuel Ungaro said that attendance there was stable. "In fact, we saw a lot of new clients from places such as Greece, Britain and Russia," she added. At Scherrer, president Charles-Edouard Barthes said client attendance was strong. "We had more Americans than usual," Barthes said. "But we may be a special case, because we’re actively developing our business there."
"The salons have been packed," a spokeswoman at Christian Lacroix said. "The ladies were in the front row. For us, it’s business as usual." But business as usual hasn’t kept houses from planning to take their collections overseas for ladies who couldn’t attend this week’s presentations. Lacroix, for example, will do a full-blown runway show in Dubai in a fortnight for the first time.
The show is part of a special invitation the designer got to participate in a fashion festival there. Meanwhile, the house plans to travel to New York and Los Angeles in mid-February — a customary practice — to visit clients. Houses from Ungaro to Scherrer plan to do the same.
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast