When Alexandre Vauthier first met Rihanna 9 years in the past, they grew to become quick pals. He was a brand new expertise, and he or she was already a world star with 4 studio albums below her belt. Because the designer remembers it, she noticed simply considered one of his collections and requested him to ship her items from his studio.
That was only the start of Vauthier’s relationship with the singer.
He went on to write down the preface of Rihanna's e-book, create appears for her music movies and shoots, and costume her for quite a few red-carpet occasions and performances (keep in mind her outfit for the 2016 VMAs?), as latest because the 2018 Grammys.
Working with Rihanna was the kickoff to a star-studded chapter of his profession, which would come with a myriad of superstar partnerships with among the largest names on the planet: Kendall Jenner, Cara Delevingne, Bella Hadid, Kerry Washington, Ciara, Beyoncé, and Dua Lipa are all followers.
However Vauthier doesn’t essentially take into consideration affect or star energy when he thinks about his model’s “girl": "I take into consideration all of the sturdy personalities, and I costume them for that," he says, below the lights of the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris, proper earlier than his newest couture present. "Dressing them on this method, you ultimately discover the sensibility of every form of particular person. You begin to acknowledge one thing inside and you may specific it."
Vauthier is shy when speaking about his well-known shoppers—even his publicist says he prefers to respect their privateness reasonably than rely what number of occasions Rihanna has worn his designs. However he has an simple affect in these circles. In reality, he’s develop into one of many go-to couturiers for among the most high-power and influential figures in trend and leisure.
View on Instagram
He stands out within the couture house as one of many few nonetheless independently owned homes exhibiting as a part of the calendar (his firm has traders, however isn’t owned by a luxurious conglomerate) and holding his operation comparatively small, even a decade in.
Throughout the trend business, couture occupies its personal very particular area of interest: It has its personal Style Week, however reveals are sometimes extra intimate than these for ready-to-wear collections and have clothes that take a whole lot of hours of labor to finish—embroidery, stitching, and embellishment carried out in specialised ateliers. To be able to even use the “Haute Couture” designation, designers should be accepted by the governing physique of the Fédération de la Haute Couture et de la Mode in Paris, for the reason that time period has authorized implications in France. So it's notably troublesome to interrupt into, particularly if you happen to're a brand new identify.
However Vauthier definitely has the pedigree: The French designer has been constantly working since he graduated from the École Supérieure des Arts et Strategies de la Mode, or ESMOD, in Paris within the 1990s—first at Thierry Mugler (the wildly inventive couture designer who’s dressed the likes of David Bowie, Woman Gaga, and Beyoncé) and later at Jean-Paul Gaultier (the mind behind a lot of Madonna’s iconic appears; Vauthier would go on to supervise its couture department for eight years).
He started his namesake line in 2009, and it could rapidly develop into synonymous with sharply tailor-made shoulders, horny minidresses, and thigh-high skirts that mix eighties glamour and modernity.
Vauthier maintains that his blazers, minis, and robes are his signatures, alongside his along with his extremely dramatic, Swarovski-crystal-coated footwear. “I simply love working—and I really like, love making attire,” he says.
Vauthier describes his design course of as customer-first: “In case you are a singer, I’m going to create one thing extra visible,” he explains. “That is the best way I create and I take into consideration all the ladies, not only one sort of girl—the lady who desires to say one thing and exist.”
View on Instagram
This strategy has attracted a returning clientele that features Hadid, Jenner, and even First Woman of France, Brigitte Macron.
Macron, specifically, has proved to be a fan of his structured outerwear—she wore an Alexandre Vauthier quantity simply final week, forward of his fall 2018 couture present. “She acknowledged a sure lower in my clothes,” the designer says, “and he or she requested to attempt a blazer…. She mentioned, ‘This can be a Brigitte Macron blazer,’ and wow, I’m tremendous proud. And I’m tremendous blissful.”
While you see Alexandre Vauthier on the crimson carpet, it's possible considered one of his couture creations—assume Jenner's lavender-feathered robe from the 2018 CFDA Awards or Rihanna's head-to-toe patent leather-based 2018 Grammys look. There’s all the time a specific amount of fantasy induced by his designs, each on the subject of the general aesthetic and the costs. “[With] couture, there isn’t a price range restrict,” he says. “It’s extra experimentation. However ready-to-wear is extra for dressing all girls.”
And regardless of his meekness about all of the highly effective superstar girls who’ve worn his work, it’s simple that this sort of publicity has helped the Alexandre Vauthier model: Hadid is a daily on his runway, and a frequent wearer of his items—together with Hailey Baldwin, and loads of different Instagram-popular faces. He’s not one to call his muses outright, however Vauthier has a knack for attracting the good fashions, actresses, and performers along with his work. Who else can get the Kate Moss to entrance a marketing campaign for a sun shades capsule, like he did for his collaboration with Alain Mikli?
Considering again on why he invests in couture, particularly, Vauthier says: “It’s a pleasure to search out new embroideries, new textures, new methods to contemplate high fashion,” he says. “Not solely in a basic method, however extra in a recent method.” That manifested on his fall 2018 couture runway, by a ball robe rendered in sequin-embroidered tiger stripes—a course of that took 1,850 hours to execute. Because the mannequin walked down the runway sporting it, editors and consumers have been virtually jostling one another to get an image of its exaggerated practice; it was precisely the form of factor you would possibly see Rihanna sporting at her subsequent look throughout award season.
Vauthier doesn’t consider his careers by way of milestones, and he can’t pinpoint one second when he felt he’d “made it” as a celeb couturier. “On the finish of the day, I simply love making girls blissful,” he says with a smile. Maybe that’s the important thing to his success and lasting attraction for pop stars, actresses, and First Women alike.