Tunisian-born French designer Azzedine Alaïa, who’s death was announced November 18, 2017, was a very different designer. He was a recognizable silhouette in the world of fashion and he was a great couturier. He was different because he didn’t just design for a season or even think about a season, he designed for a body and he followed no schedule but his own. He would only design a collection when he was ready and only show when he was ready. He didn’t conform to the “see now/shop now” movement which he himself termed “see when it’s ready/shop later.” There was never any immediacy.
He happily operated outside some of the norms of fashion but did’t completely turn his back on fashion or its trends. His creations didn’t need to have a seasonally related story – his designs, the materials did that, they told the story. It’s about the women that wore his collections, that’s were the magic and the transformation happened.
One of his very last shows was in July of this year and was his first in six years. You only have to look at that collection and then ask yourself the question – who wouldn’t have been willing to wait? The imposingly gifted Azzedine Alaïa will be greatly missed.