Designer Dictionary: Azzedine Alaïa

Azzedine Alaïa, a.k.a. ‘The King of Cling’. As the title suggests, the Tunisian fashion designer is highly acclaimed for the skintight dress, a look that is trending today and one that reflects my personal style. The Chevalier of the Légion d’honneur 2008, is also known for his exclusive couture and shoe designs. Alaïa boasts famous clients such as Michelle Obama and Madonna and has a ‘father-daughter’ type of relationship with super model Naomi Campbell (of which he is credited for recognising her star-quality when they first met when she was 16). This discreet yet legendary man, forebodes a strong start to the Designer Dictionary, a weekly feature that will be posted on the blog.

 

Name: Azzedine Alaïa 

Nickname: ‘King of Cling’

Date of Birth: 26th February 1940

Country of Birth: Tunisia

Education: École des Beaux-Arts

Occupation: Fashion Designer

Label(s): Alaïa 

Famous Work: bodycon dresses, high heels and couture

Did You Know? Alaïa lied about his age in order to secure a placement at the École des Beaux-Arts, Tunis.

In 1980, Andrée Putman (an interior designer), was stopped by a Bergdorf Goodman buyer and asked about who she was wearing. It happened to be one of the first Alaïa leather coats and this encounter led to the first sales of the label in Beverly Hills and New York. 

Alaïa’s inspirations were his glamorous sister and the designer Madeline Vionnet

Famous Associates: Grace Jones, Janet Jackson, Madonna, Marie-Hélèn de Rothschild, Naomi Campbell

Awards: Best Designer of The Year (1984), Chevalier de la Légion d’honneur (2008)

Quotes: ‘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.’

‘She runs the business very well, but not the fashion part. When I see how she is dressed, I don’t believe in her tastes one second… Anyway, who will remember Anna Wintour in the history of fashion? No one.’

‘I am never sure that anything’s good enough. Something that is good today will not be good tomorrow.’

‘Fashion will last forever. It will exist always. It will exist in its own way in each era.’

‘I make clothes; women make fashion.’

Alicia Silverstone in Clueless (1995) • Source: liamak47.tumblr.com 📸

Naomi Campbell @ Azzedine Alaïa FW91 • Source: missvictorialee.tumblr.com 📸

Beverly Peele @ Azzedine Alaïa SS91 • Source: aleworldaddict.tumblr.com 📸

Couture Week Finale: Dolce & Gabbana Alta Moda

Couture week came to a close with no other than Dolce & Gabbana. The Italian fashion house presents Alta Moda with the usual combinations of flowers, heavy jewel details and an elegantly feminine silhouette.
Dolce & Gabbana Alta Moda

‘Miss Elegance’ @ Dolce & Gabbana Alta Moda FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Dolce & Gabbana Alta Moda FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Dolce & Gabbana Alta Moda FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Dolce & Gabbana Alta Moda FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Dolce & Gabbana Alta Moda FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Dolce & Gabbana Alta Moda FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Dolce & Gabbana Alta Moda FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Dolce & Gabbana Alta Moda FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸


The Dolce & Gabbana aesthetic features gold, jewels and often, a crown of some sort which symbolises the power, elegance and strength of women. The best designers have a signature look in which you would instantly recognise if you saw an item of their clothing. Dolce & Gabbana do this but always offer more: more flowers, more embellishments and more beauty. 

Couture Week Day 5: FT Fendi

In celebration of Fendi‘s 90th anniversary, Karl Lagerfield created the miracle that is models walking on water. The couture show was held at the glorious Trevi Fountain, which is also where the brand was founded. 

Fendi

Fendi Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Fendi Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Fendi Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Fendi Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Details @ Fendi Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Details @ Fendi Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Fendi Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Fendi Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Fendi Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Fendi Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸


Sheer gowns, ankle boots and of course, fur. Fendi put on a show full of top models such as Kendall Jenner and Bella Hadid as well as hosting at an exclusive location that is the rootes to the Italian fashion house. 

No more words are needed, take a look at the images for yourself. Breath-taking.  

Haute Couture Week Day 4: FT Elie Saab, Jean Paul Gaultier, Zuhair Murad and Valentino

On the fourth day of Haute Couture Week we received: mother and daughter gowns, tailoring, sparkles and the ending to a chapter of a fashion house. 

Elie Saab

Matching @ Elie Saab Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Elie Saab Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Matching @ Elie Saab Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Elie Saab Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Elie Saab Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Elie Saab Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Elie Saab Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

The show-stopper @ Elie Saab Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸


At an Elie Saab Couture show, it doesn’t matter whether it’s SS or FW when it comes to colours and themes. Floral embellishments delicately sparkle on pink, white, cream and gold sheer material. The theme of nature continues with stars, feathers and drapes of fur. Models were accompanied with mini-me’s in twinning ensembles and the bridal show-closer was an extravagant summary of the light-hearted show. 
Jean Paul Gaultier

Jean Paul Gaultier Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Jean Paul Gaultier Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Jean Paul Gaultier Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Jean Paul Gaultier Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Jean Paul Gaultier Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Jean Paul Gaultier Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸


Turn to your darker side and embrace the tones of Fall with an auburn coat or a deep cherry red lip. Jean Paul Gaultier offers a balance of masculinity vs femininity with structured tailoring and sheer, shoulder-baring dresses. The JPG girl teams her couture with fur, whether that be framing the face or neck. 
Zuhair Murad

Zuhair Murad Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Zuhair Murad Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Zuhair Murad Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Zuhair Murad Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Zuhair Murad Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Zuhair Murad Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Zuhair Murad Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Zuhair Murad Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Zuhair Murad Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸


I’ve always considered Zuhair Murad to be Elie Saab‘s sexy and daring older sister. Although we associate the two houses similarly, Zuhair Murad often teams casual accessories with dazzling embellished gowns that imply more attitude. The bride however, glistens in gold strutting like a queen down the runway with the well deserved crown. 
Valentino

Valentino Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Valentino Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Valentino Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Valentino Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Valentino Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Details @ Valentino Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Valentino Haute Couture FW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸


It had been rumoured that this show would be the last that Maria Grazia Chiuri was apart of and therefore the emotions were high at this Valentino Haute Couture show. As spectators were, the designers took moments from the past with an Elizabethan theme consuming the show. Equestrian flat boots were teamed with virtually every ensemble as well as high-neck blouses and tailored trousers. The classic Valentino sheer dresses had famous words of love and hate imprinted upon them, an ironic message foreshadowing the reaction to the confirmation of Maria Grazia’s departure from Valentino to be welcomed at Dior

Haute Couture Week Day 3 FT: J.Mendel and Alexandre Vaulthier

It seems that with every day, the Couture Week shows are getting stronger. J. Mendel focuses on exposing the shoulders whilst Alexandre Vaulthier features a popular cast of models. 
J. Mendel

J. Mendel Haute Couture AW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

J. Mendel Haute Couture AW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

J. Mendel Haute Couture AW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸


Stunning dresses that feature dazzling embellishments and draw attention to the shoulders were displayed at J. Mendel. As they’re teamed  with high boots, the eyes naturally look to the shoulders which are decorated with a halter neck or completely bare, giving  full attention to the details of the dresses. 
Alexandre Vaulthier 

Jourdan Dunn opening the show @ Alexandre Vaulthier Haute Couture AW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Lindsey Wixon @ Alexandre Vaulthier Haute Couture AW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Alexandre Vaulthier Haute Couture AW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Alexandre Vaulthier Haute Couture AW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Alexandre Vaulthier Haute Couture AW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Alexandre Vaulthier Haute Couture AW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸

Bella Hadid closing the show @ Alexandre Vaulthier Haute Couture AW17 • Source: vogue.co.uk 📸


As seen previously during the week, a more casual approach was taken at Alexandre Vaulthier with a neutral colour palette, made glamorous with the use of fur and exaggerated bows that acted as belts at the waist line. Never would you find a gown that is khaki yet ever so beautifully designed than at Haute Couture Week. The cast featured top models including: Jourdan Dunn, Lindsey Wixon and Bella Hadid.