Demna Gvasalia: ‘Vetements is a brutal workplace’


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The fashion designer is artistic director of the French label, as well as creative director of Balenciaga after taking over from Alexander Wang. The two workplace environments couldn’t be more different when it comes to the atmosphere though, but Gvasalia is hoping to change that so both can be bold with their approach to clothing.

“Vetements is like Parliament,” he laughed to “Everybody’s very outspoken and not afraid of sharing their opinion in a very brutal way. Here (at Balenciaga) it’s still a work in progress because the womenswear team is not used to this way. But they start to get there.”

He spends two and a half days at Balenciaga a week, and another two and a half at Vetements. You won’t find Gvasalia working at the weekend though as he’s strict about having his Saturdays and Sundays free, except during Fashion Week.

The fashion star has made a great deal of changes since joining Balenciaga towards the end of last year (15). He injected his own style into the brand’s pieces by mixing and matching different garments, creating vivid and eye-catching lines.

“The way we work is that we have these garments, and there’s a lot of destroying and cutting them up to create something new,” he explained, referring to a number in his Fall 16 collection. “That’s what we did with a red puffer jacket and a Helly Hansen ski parka… It’s inspired by the street and things we see every day, but then it’s put in a different context, where it doesn’t really belong.”

Although he isn’t attempting to recreate founder Cristobal Balenciaga’s vision of the brand, Gvasalia does take note of how the designer looked at his customers.

“He really respected and loved them – I see that in the clothes, the way he approached the body. He liked to fit on models who were not perfect,” he smiled. “He liked to work with reality, and flatter it. I’m trying to work with that.”Read more |

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