A new era of creative directions has begun, from Moncler Genius to Prada with Raf Simons. What it will be of the definition: "creative director"? What does it mean for a brand?
From couturiers like Worth, who covered every role within the "brand", to creative teams that change every season, pioneer and I would say, Genius, the entrepreneur Remo Ruffini is the man behind this strategy for Moncler.
The birth of the fashion company and its creative director
But let's start from the beginning.
Charles Frederich Worth is responsible for the idea of exclusivity behind designer clothes. He planned to present the collections in advance before the actual season and to supply the pattern pieces to the market, to avoid plagiarisms and offer in this way novelties. He could still be responsible for the idea of family management of a brand, when in 1895, upon his death, his son Gaston succeeded him.
And so on until Maurice Worth in 1953, the year in which Paquin, another French fashion house of the nineteenth century, bought the maison.
These are the first steps towards what is today a fashion globally recognised and run by a single figure: the creative director.
The creative director is the one who manages the creations, the business, the quality, and the communication, to name a few of his tasks. Yes, a few, because he can be much more for a brand, like the multifaceted Karl Lagerfeld, known as Kaiser Karl, for the incredible breeding ground of ideas that his mind was. He was able to organise all those ideas and make them work with his numerous creative directions for his brand, for Fendi, which he directed for over 50 years and Chanel, for 36 years. With a single sentence, he explains the concept of whom, like him, put in charge of a brand with a vital heritage must be able to face:
"My job is not to do what Gabrielle Chanel did, but what she wanted to do."
Moncler and the others
It is certainly not easy to carry on your idea of style, without going beyond what are the ideas behind the brand you work for. This is the big challenge that two years ago, Remo Ruffini decided to launch to eight designers at the same time, proposing a new way of launching the collections. Monthly rather than seasonal, to satisfy every part of the world at any time. A real revolution nowadays our reality, revolution adopted by other fashion houses.
Among those, Emilio Pucci, without a creative director since Massimo Giorgetti's 2017, with the collection presented last February, announces the novelty. The choice to collaborate with a different designer each season, who can express his vision of Pucci in a contemporary key. The Fall-Winter 2020/21 collection is therefore signed by Christelle Kocher, French designer of the Kochè brand, winner of the Andaman Grand Prize 2019. Kocher said: "I have always been impressed by his elegant silhouettes, extraordinary prints, and colours. It is a real pleasure to immerse myself in the brilliant universe of Emilio Pucci and his history. "But who will be the next designer?
Jean-Paul Gaultier, after his grand celebrations of 50 years of career, also communicated he would be using the guest designer mode. With an announcement on Instagram, he revealed that the first would be Chitose Abe from Sacai. Famous for her hybrid aesthetic, born in Gifu (Japan), she has learned a lot in the style offices of Comme des Gançons and Junya Watanabe. We will learn about her approach to the irreverent JPG world at the July Haute Couture shows.
The next Spring-Summer 2021 signed by Prada and Raf Simons will be a four-hand collection in the sense of the creative direction. More than a change of armchair, I would say: "add one more seat" to the direction of Prada.
Known in 2005 when he took over as director for Jil Sander, Patrizio Bertelli, CEO and husband of Miuccia Prada, he affirms his good intentions regarding this partnership. Despite the risk of questioning the individuality of creative authorship, it is indeed necessary to approach the continuous changing of things of our time, of which we are all actors and spectators at the same time.
by Pamela Romano