As you might have heard, Christopher Decarnin has left Balmain as the head designer.
Decarnin is known for igniting Balmania across the globe with impeccably tailored jackets, artfully torn T-shirts and jeans, and sexy dresses - at staggering prices of $1,000 and up for a T-shirt.
2009 was known as the year of Balmain. In the gloomy mood of the economy and the recession, Decarnin's thrashy yet glamourous aesthetics were a hit with editors, celebrities and consumers. It spawned many high-street knockoffs, with shoulder padded jackets and ripped jeans showing up all over the high street. Girls all over tried to emulate the same the same offbeat, slightly imperfect and didn't-try-too-hard look.
Back to current times, Decarnin disappeared mid-January and it is even reported that he has entered a mental facility. It is now confirmed that Oliver Rousteing, the deputy designer at Balmain is set to replace him.
The fashion crowd seems to have wisened up and moved on from paying thousands of dollars for a T-shirt.
Robin Givhan, Fashion Editor of The Washington Post conveys this sentiment, saying, "Certainly, the fashion industry — as a purveyor of beauty ideals, fine craftsmanship, and creativity — is better off without the aesthetic that he and Balmain popularized ... The cost of his fully bedazzled mini-dresses could reach well into tens of thousands of dollars, easily making a couture client hyperventilate. His tailored jackets, though beautifully cut, were also a king's ransom at $10,000. In fairness, some of the prices could be explained by the skill put into the cutting and the elaborate beadwork — one Prince-inspired collection, for example, featured frock coats lacquered in gold sequins. But Decarnin's tattered jeans and T-shirts were equally as expensive — think $1,000 for an artfully torn tank top. And no, he did not come to clients' homes himself with a pair of shears to do the snipping to their personal specifications. There is no justification for that sort of pricing other than it exploited one of the worst marketing tactics in the fashion industry. Balmain's jeans and T-shirts reeked of the most grotesque prestige pricing."
Looking at the recent Fall/Winter 2011 Balmain photos, it is obvious the amount of work that intricate details that goes into it. Balmain definitely has a place in the fashion industry in the future, but it needs to rethink its astronomical price tag. Will Oliver Rousteing make some changes in Balmain or will he stick with its money-making formula?
Only time will tell.
Photo Credits: Bryanboy.com, The Sartorialist, life-is-something-crazy.blogspot.com, 00o00.blogspot.com