PARIS–Needless to remind you that Christian left Lacroix in 2009 due to financial difficulties, (which were mainly because of its costly couture line).
Last season, the house relaunched, led by Sacha Walckhoff, the founder’s assistant of 17 years, who had heavily contributed to just about every department of the brand.
Now working only through licenses, Lacroix launched a menswear collection last season that were miles away from Christian’s once theatrical designs: wearable, elegant, the former’s designer’s loudness appeared only in discreet touches, on linings and collars.
Last night in Lacroix’s flagship boutique in Paris’ left bank, Sacha presented a full-blow runway show, but a humble one nevertheless. The interior, currently going through renovations, had bare walls and floors, and felt like a chic squat party. On
the outside, a simple sign hung stating “Lacroix: work in progress.”
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Besides Sarah Burton at Alexander McQueen, there is no designer in the world with a more enviable/terrifying job than Sacha Walckhoff, the new creative director at Christian Lacroix.
Walckhoff’s been working at Lacroix in some capacity or another since 1992. He started as a knitwear designer, moving onto diffusion line Bazar, then to jeans, and eventually menswear. In 2000, he left the company full time to consult for brands like Kenzo, but returned in 2003 when Lacroix began spending more energy working on his collections for Pucci.
The Swiss-French designer has been at Lacroix’s side ever since, through the last two years of financial trouble right, culminating with the company filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in May 2009.
It wasn’t until after Lacroix–the man–announced he was breaking all ties with the company, that CEO Nicolas Topiol and Miami, Fla.-based investors the Falic Group asked Walckhoff to come on as Creative Director.
Walckhoff’s first ready-to-wear collection? Menswear, which is funded by a licensee. Women’s pret-a-porter and couture are part of the future, but not the present.
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