Alexandre Vauthier is a French fashion designer who has quickly developed a cult following in recent years. Vauthier started his design career at Thierry Mugler, where he served as an assistant to Mugler himself. In 1997, Vauthier joined Jean-Paul Gaultier, and was appointed head designer of the Couture collection for eight years. Inspired by many trips to Asia and California throughout 2008, Vauthier presented his first namesake Couture collection in 2009. Additionally, Vauthier has been presenting his version of French ready-to-wear for the past five seasons. For this collection, Vauthier’s brand signatures of sharp tailoring and strong silhouettes among the asymmetric dresses and interesting leather jackets set him apart from his peers.
Where are you based? How often are you traveling for fittings?
In Paris. I’m on a plane every week.
How big is your team?
We started out with just two of us – today we are 14.
Between couture and ready-to-wear, how many collections a year do you design?
I design four collections every year. Soon it will be six!
How did your experiences at Thierry Mugler and Jean-Paul Gaultier prepare you for your own collection?
Both experiences were very rewarding in different ways, but they were both a lesson in rigor and perseverance.
You create statement-making clothing – was this always the goal?
I never thought about it. I just try to make women look beautiful.
Celebrities love your collection; can you describe the specific appeal for women like Rihanna, Rita Ora and Beyoncé?
I am very proud of this, but I can’t tell why it is so. You’d have to ask them!
Do you ever create custom pieces for any of their tours?
Is it tough to get women to relate to your pieces after seeing them on celebrities?
It depends on the woman and it depends on the celebrity. For me, I often find women are more attracted to the brand after a celebrity wears my designs.
What are the differences between your haute couture customer and your ready-to-wear customer?
Both clients are equally distributed around the world. The couture client generally wants an extraordinary gown or a dress for a specific ceremony. The RTW client buys more day and cocktail wear. They are complementary and a core clientele buys both the couture and the RTW.
Alexandre Vauthier presented his Spring 2014 Couture collection two days ago in Paris. View the collection here.