Balmain’s Creative Director Olivier Rousteing has divulged his attraction to stars such as Kim Kardashian and Rihanna.
Olivier has been credited with turning the clothing brand around with a focus on stars rather than on models. Speaking about this to The Telegraph, he says that people today are more interested in personality above all else: “When you look at the fashion brands, how many followers do they have? Balmain has 1.1 million. It's like 10 per cent of what those girls have. It shows you the power of the personality more than the power of the entire brand.”
However, he said he also keeps the classic Balmain brand in mind too, speaking about Pierre Balmain who established the fashion house in 1914: “I keep Pierre Balmain in my mind because he loved strong women, women who have something to say.”
And one reason Olivier may love Kim and Rihanna so much, it would seem, is all down to their curves: “Fashion had started to forget women in away, and concentrate too much on the clothes. For me it made no sense … The woman had to come back; the curved woman, and different kinds of body shapes. I don’t like skinny girls. I want to represent a real woman, not just a shadow or a ghost.”
While we appreciate what he is saying and there is no doubt that change in the fashion industry can only be a good thing, we’re not sure where he gets the idea that ‘skinny girls’ aren’t real women too…
The designer also compared Rihanna to the classic beauty, Grace Kelly, saying: “She has this aura, this charisma. It’s not only sexual. It’s something else. She is like a new Grace Kelly, or a Madonna.”
It sounds like Olivier is taking some very different paths in the fashion world to other designers – what do you think?