Forgoing the sensible in favour of the sensual, Alexandre Vauthier has found huge success with his eponymous couture line since launching in 2009. Loved by the likes of Bella Hadid, Karlie Kloss and Beyoncé, the designer studied under Thierry Mugler and Jean Paul Gaultier before branching out on his own. And it’s a good thing he did for his designs bring a different appeal to haute couture for the new, more millennial consumer. See what he had to say about the state of haute couture today and how he came up with his now signature silhouette…
What is your vision of haute couture today?
Couture is expertise; it’s training, craftsmanship and techniques. It’s a creative lab and this is why I’m interested in it. Couture evolves, evening dresses will always exist but clients needs are changing. They are now looking for exclusive pieces. It’s important to dissociate couture and the spirit of it related to overload and complex pieces. I think that we need to find a good balance between wealth and exclusivity and make it more discreet than it used to be.
What inspires you and your work?
Creation has no boundaries and everything inspires me: a silhouette, a shape, a colour. Month after month, elements stand and bring some pieces to light. And this is when a new collection concept comes up.
What inspires your brand’s style?
I have never thought about this question. I don’t want to lock myself always in boxes. I just try to represent the world around me by highlighting femininity in a luxurious and exclusive environment.
How do you crystalise every collection in a very luxurious way?
Thank to techniques like Métiers d’Art and Lesage embroideries, and Swarovski crystals.
How do you inject your own DNA into each of the collections?
I try to find a balance between sensuality, elegance and geometry.
How would you describe the style of the Alexandre Vauthier customer?
It’s hard to define the Alexandre Vauthier woman, but my clients would better answer it. The reason why my collections are fresh and bright is because I always try to make it fluid with no boundaries or fashion diktats.
What is your favourite colour, fabric and stone?
Black, gold and crystals!
How did you create the emblematic V-shape?
I pay attention to the world around me, I try to understand it and feel it. This feeling makes a creative expression intended for women, it’s my vision on silhouettes and attitudes.
This work has no limits and is very instinctive. I’m very honest and I say exactly what I think. Mixing this freedom and all other elements make a kind of alchemy that gives a global reach to my style.
Now, read Farouk’s earlier column with Guo Pei, the designer behind Rihanna’s iconic 2015 Met Gala dress.