PARIS – Couture week in July will feature the debut of a formerly hidden talent: 49-year-old Frenchman Bertrand Guyon.
On Tuesday, Schiaparelli named the seasoned couture designer as its new design director, confirming a WWD report on March 11.
Guyon is also responsible for forthcoming high-end ready-to-wear collections that the Place Vendôme house dubs “prêt-à-couture.”
Owned by Italian entrepreneur Diego Della Valle, Schiaparelli has been searching for a creative director since November, when the company parted ways with Marco Zanini after a two-season collaboration. An in-house team designed the spring collection unveiled in January.
Guyon joins Schiaparelli from Valentino, where for the past seven years he helped to shape the couture and ready to wear collections by Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli, the Roman house’s creative directors.
A graduate of the École de la Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne, Guyon started his career at Charles Jourdan, Givenchy and Pierre Cardin.
At Givenchy, he worked under house founder Hubert de Givenchy and his two successors — John Galliano and Alexander McQueen — before joining Christian Lacroix in 1997.
According to Schiaparelli, Guyon was Lacroix’s right hand, an experience that shaped his vision of couture as a “laboratory of fantasy, poetry and savoir faire.”
Hired to revive a brand that had been dormant for 60 years, Zanini staged two shows for Schiaparelli, largely receiving plaudits for bringing some flamboyance and eccentricity to the high fashion scene.
Reviving a brand synonymous with shocking pink and designs influenced by Surrealism has been a topsy-turvy process for Della Valle, who bought the trademarks and archives in 2006 and trumpeted the house’s comeback in 2012.
He started out hiring Paris fashion personality Farida Khelfa as the spokeswoman for Schiaparelli; and tapped Lacroix for a one-off collection that was never sold before finally appointing Zanini.