Stella McCartney’s double-win at last night’s British Fashion Awards, where she was awarded both Designer of the Year and the Designer Brand of the Year, capped off a year of non-stop success for her eponymous label.
Success that probably made McCartney’s former boss at Chloé eat his words. According to McCartney, he was pretty positive she, being a woman and all, wouldn’t make it on her own.
Of making the decision to leave Chloé and start her own label in England, she said in her acceptance speech (via the Telegraph):
It was to the top man at this brand that I delivered this news, and as I did he was really shocked. He said: “Stella, you will live to regret this. You will fail. And I offer you to stay here and start your brand in Paris with us.” I was really grateful for his offer but I stuck to my instincts and said that I still wanted to go.
As I left he said – in his French accent – [at this point Stella adopted an 'Allo 'Allo lilt] ‘you need to know: there ‘has never in the history of fashion been a British fashion house with a woman’s name on the label that has ever been truly global.’ [Cue boos]
So I guess I do have to thank him – Mr Anonymous. Although I disagree with him: there is Dame Vivienne, amongst others. But I will never forget how I felt that day leaving his office. I couldn’t be more determined to prove him wrong. And with this award I feel like I am at the start of doing that.
McCartney never reveals who, specifically she was talking about. At the time, Chloé’s relatively new CEO was Geoffroy de la Bourdonnaye and Marty Wikstrom was the head of Richemont, which owns Chloe.
It’s disheartening to think anyone could be so arrogant as to say something like that, but at least it ultimately yielded positive results thanks to McCartney’s determination to prove him wrong. Go, Stella!