"We are the brand that invented effortless luxury" – Zadig & Voltaire's Cecilia Bonstrom
Paris Fashion Week exclusive
I t was the achingly cool charm of Zadig & Voltaire that saw Paris Fashion Week's fash pack flock to the garden terrace at Avenue d'Iena. On the third last day of the season, when the shows were sparse, the French fashion brand held their SS17 presentation sans runway. Here Buro 24/7 Middle East's Editor in Chief, Shannon Wylie, spoke to Zadig & Voltaire's Creative Director, Cecilia Bonstrom, about her new vision, the history of the house and why pirates are stealing her show...
IT'S MY CHALLENGE TO ALWAYS DO THINGS THAT ARE VERY EASY TO WEAR, THINGS THAT YOU THROW ON. IT'S JUST SOMETHING THAT YOU SLIDE INTO. IT'S STRONG, BUT IT'S NOT A STATEMENT.
We're here in Paris for the launch of the Zadig & Voltaire SS17 collection. As a seemingly effortless continuation from last season, what is different for next year's collection?
For me, I love music, so this time I had fun using hip hop. I wanted to do something masculine so my floral dresses and prints wouldn't be that feminine. I like that kind of mix.
It's very edgy!
Yes. It actually meant I could collaborate with Virginia Elwood, who is a real tattoo artist in Brooklyn.
Yes, I've just read about her work...
We met in New York then we started working together through Facetime at night because she's in Brooklyn and I'm here (in Paris). We went with a pirates and circus theme because I love the elements of the circus. We worked on rabbits to printed dresses with tattoo prints and boots with embroidered skeletons. The leather is painted too and I had fun using different techniques with the prints.
Do you have a favourite print in the collection?
I would have to say it's my pirate boots. As well, at Zadig & Voltaire we're famous for our silk and lace camisoles, the lingerie look, which is worn with blazers or sweaters. So this time we pushed it further with a 100 per cent black leather camisole. I love to transform our silhouettes into other materials — it surprises.
What's your view on Paris Fashion Week this season?
Paris Fashion Week is the strongest. The history of luxury and construction is linked to France and you cannot get away from it. I think that's what makes people come here. It's in the silk, it's a certain vibe and it's the history, the legacy for women. To have fashion made in Paris, it has that authentic touch.
Paris is known for its juxtaposition between ready-to-wear and couture. Zadig & Voltaire, obviously associates with ready-to-wear. Do you think it's going to maintain that trajectory?
Yes. We are the brand that invented effortless luxury and I want to keep that. There's a true quality and true uniqueness in each fabric. I'm very faithful to our DNA.
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