Alexandre Vauthier Couture Spring 2013
Say you’re an A-lister and the aim of your red carpet game is to look nothing but sexy… who do you turn to? Alexandre Vauthier, of course! Don’t know him? You probably do. Cast your mind back to Rihanna's shoulder-pad phase...
It’s not often that new and independent haute couturiers come out of Paris – many of the designers take up tenures within more established houses – but hot-ticket Alexandre has been très populaire since he launched his eponymous label in 2008. Most recently Vauthier has been clothing Rita Ora, but she isn't his only high profile fan. We caught up with Alexandre as he unveiled an equally sexy piece of arm candy, the U7 bag…
Grazia Daily: It wasn't so long ago that you scored a double whammy at the Golden Globes with Heidi Klum and Michelle Dockery, how was that for you?
Alexandre Vauthier: It was fantastic! I knew I would dress Heidi Klum.The fittings took place two months before so I had almost forgotten that she was wearing the dress for this occasion. For Michelle we had the request only two weeks before. Thanks to the fast actions of her stylist we were able to work on the dress, but with no guarantee that she would wear it. We were lucky and it worked!
Golden Globes 2013: Michelle Dockery and Heidi Klum in Alexandre Vauthier
Grazia Daily: Who was the first ever A-lister to wear your designs? And how did it make you feel?
Alexandre Vauthier: The first was Roisin Murphy, she even came to my first show. But the real break through was Rihanna, it is thanks to her and her support that I was able to continue. In both cases I was extremely happy. I’m lucky to dress women I admire for their performance and determination. Whoever they are it is not a one-sided relationship. It’s really an exchange and about good vibes.
Grazia Daily: Rita Ora, Lady Gaga, Beyonce, Rihanna – all of these pop girls are big fans of yours. Who do you think is the ultimate Alexandre Vauthier girl?
Alexandre Vauthier: There is not one Vauthier woman but several. I never impose my style, the women take over the clothes and it adapts to their personality.
Rita Ora in three of Vauthier's sparkliest designs
Grazia Daily: Your clothes are unashamedly sexy – what do you think is the trick to looking sophisticated and sexy, rather than trashy?
Alexandre Vauthier: It’s a question of balance you mustn’t cross a certain limit, some mixes can tip in the wrong direction.
Grazia Daily: And what is it about a sharp shouldered silhouette that you like so much?
Alexandre Vauthier: The shoulders are a point of a balance and the starting point of all work on the female body. Everything is organised around the shoulders and the waist.
Alexandre Vauthier Couture 2013
Grazia Daily: For a long time some insiders have claimed that couture is dead, but the past couple of seasons have proved otherwise and the market for these custom-made creations appears to be booming. What's your opinion on couture right now, and what do most of your clients request?
Alexandre Vauthier: Since I started working I’ve always heard that couture is dead, but I realise that it’s more present than ever and that clients are looking more and more for exclusivity. I am lucky that there are never too many modifications on my styles. We close a slit or a neckline sometimes but for the most part the original design is respected. Clients do ask for a very high level of quality, for fabric and for craftsmanship. They adore the ‘metiers d’art’ [the traditional craftsmen who specialise in lace or embellishment, for example] Lesage, Lemarié, Goossens … and Swarovski crystals.
Gaga and Rihanna are also Vauthier fans
Grazia Daily: What keeps the energy up in your studio?
Alexandre Vauthier: My team! I love them and we have a great exchange of energy.
Grazia Daily: Is there one thing that particular inspires you at the moment?
Alexandre Vauthier: Life.
Alexandre's new work - the U7 bag
Grazia Daily: Are there any trends that you really don’t like and want to ignore?
Alexandre Vauthier: Of course, many, but I’ll keep them private!
Grazia Daily: What’s next for your brand?
Alexandre Vauthier: Many projects... A bag development with Renato Corti and sunglasses with Dita eyewear. I’m very excited about them both!