When you get this kind of news, your soul just feels a bit orphan, a bit lost. Azzedine Alaia, fashion designer, genius, creator, rebel, and ruler passed away.
He was 77 but just in July this year, he gave a surprise catwalk to show his latest collection. Surprise, because he was supposed to be retired from 1992. Although he continued to do catwalks every now and then until 2011. I guess geniuses are not able to stop.
This last catwalk now means so much. Naomi Campbell, very good friend and initially even protegé of Alaia- returned to the runway to wow us together with the maestro.
Condolences and recognition to what his legacy is- as a person and as professional- are pouring in. Dubai Fashion News team wants to join with this little tribute.
ABOUT AZZEDINE ALAIA
Born in 1940 in Tunisia and with humble origins, he managed to be admitted at the Institut Superieur des Beaux-Arts to study sculpture. He soon realized that he wouldn’t be a great sculptor so decided to try his luck with sewing.
His twin sister showed him how to sew and he started copying designs from the magazines for the neighbors. It turned out he was really good!
When he was 17, he migrated to France and he started working immediately at Christian Dior. He was only sewing labels but the bureaucratic process with the visa got him out of the job only 5 days after he started.
After that, he worked for Guy Laroche for 2 seasons and started meeting the who is who and many clients. Thierry Mugler was his employer after Guy Laroche. There he continued meeting clients that eventually became friends.
La Comtesse de Blegiers offered him a job to babysit and make dresses and he took it. And soon, he established himself as an independent couturier.
He dressed actresses and aristocrats during those golden Hollywood years. Greta Garbo or Marie Helene de Rothschild, became part of his list of clients. Later, in the 80´s, Madonna, Grace Jones, Tina Turner, Carine Roitfeld, and many, many more joined that exclusive list.
Alaia saw changes coming ahead and in the 80´s launched his ready-to-wear from a very cute studio and showroom in the Marais.
He was pretty unconventional. For example, he didn’t care about the fashion calendar or whatever trends were out there. He would prepare the shows whenever the collection was ready, not before. The month or the year was not important. In a way, he was creating timeless pieces so it made total sense.
The “King of Cling” because of his very tight but elegant-and sculptural- dresses, never disappointed and we still revere him as the genius, yet humble person he was.
Rest in peace, Alaia.
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Then you might also like this tribute we did for a very good friend of Azzedine Alaia. She passed away last year and we hold her very dear to our hearts.