Iconic designer Azzedine Alaïa, who is often an outspoken critic of the fashion industry, just ripped apart two of its biggest power players: Karl Lagerfeld and Anna Wintour. Alaïa has had a longstanding feud with Wintour–in 2009, when he was omitted from the “Model as Muse” exhibit at the Met’s Costume Institute, he told WWD that Wintour “behaves like a dictator and everyone is terrified of her.”
In a candid interview with Virgine Magazine, Alaïa also talks about Galliano (whose job at Dior he reportedly turned down), blaming his troubles on the “system” of the fashion industry. But, it’s his digs at Karl Lagerfeld and Anna Wintour that made us go, “Wow, he went there.” He essentially calls the Kaiser a “caricature” who has “never touched a pair of scissors in his life” and Anna a business person with no taste who everyone fears. All that hate is fine because, as he repeatedly states throughout the interview, women love him! Read on to find out what he really thinks about Anna, Karl, Galliano and more.
Now, [the fashion industry] has become crafty fiddling at a breakneck pace. That’s not the essence of fashion. How can you really be creative under these circumstances? For the young designers it’s very hard, and for the more mature, they drink more, take more drugs… what I am saying is that the system is not right. We have to see the work from another angle. The system is too stressful: too many collections, too much pressure.
On Suing Herve Leger over his zipped Arrietty dress:
Now, Hervé Léger says that he is the one to have created the concept of the zipped dress. He better keep it low, because I could sue him! [Laughs.]
On Karl Lagerfeld:
Happily, women love me and buy my clothes, unlike Karl who’s never been loved like me! [Laughs.]
I don’t like his fashion, his spirit, his attitude. It’s too much caricature. Karl Lagerfeld never touched a pair of scissors in his life. That doesn’t mean that he’s not great, but he’s part of another system. He has capacity. One day he does photography, the next he does advertisements for Coca-Cola. I would rather die than see my face in a car advertisement. We don’t do the same work.
And finally, on Vogue‘s Editor in Chief:
She runs the business (Vogue) very well, but not the fashion part. When I see how she is dressed, I don’t believe in her tastes one second. I can say it loudly! She hasn’t photographed my work in years even if I am a best seller in the U.S. and I have 140 square meters at Barneys. American women love me; I don’t need her support at all. Anna Wintour doesn’t deal with pictures; she is just doing PR and business, and she scares everybody. But when she sees me, she is the scared one. [Laughs.] Other people think like me, but don’t say it because they are afraid that Vogue won’t photograph them. Anyway, who will remember Anna Wintour in the history of fashion? No one. Take Diana Vreeland, she is remembered because she was so chic. What she did with the magazine was great, with Avedon and all the great photographers.
Let this be a lesson: don’t mess with Alaïa. He’s, like, a totally important designer.