Exclusive: the transformation of Givenchy

Clare Waight Keller is officially on the battle of Givenchy. The luxury brand unveiled the first ad campaign of the designer. Starring: kitties!


There was a time when the new designer of a luxury brand in the wide world was introduced with a procession. In 2017 is that strategy obsolete. Example: Givenchy, where Clare Waight Keller a few months ago, Riccardo Tisci followed. Waight Keller made her first steps in the French label with an advertising campaign, and which will be unveiled today.

Title: Transformation Seduction. Photographer: the famous Steven Meisel. The black and white photos are made in a private home in New York, with four models and the same number of cats.

“I love the simplicity of the portraits,” says Waight Keller in a press release, ” And the engaging directness in the gaze of the models. The photos evoke the bold, very graphic quality that Hubert de Givenchy gave to everything he designed.’

Waight Keller, who until the beginning of this year the artistic director of Chloé, groove the past few months in the archives of Givenchy, and discovered that they are with the couturier has a love for animals share. Her favorite discovery: a collection of zijdeprints from 1953 with a picture of a cat with orange eyes.


‘The idea of a woman with a feline air appeals to me. Someone who is perhaps a bit reserved, but yet a serene, rechtdoorzeegaande look. Such a person is tempting. You want her to meet, to know her better. The modern attitude is, I think, a suitable metaphor for the current evolution of Givenchy.’

Models Safron Vadher and Meghan Roche wearing lace t-shirts, the boys (Elias Bouremah and Kolton Bowen) wear tuxedopantalons and gold jewelry, and kate wearing necklaces that will be sold. “For me, it is Givenchy a world where both women and men are strong, stoic, and mysterious,’ says the designer

The campaign is a prelude to Waight Kellers official debut on 1 October, during the Paris fashion week. It is a mixed show, with both the ladies – if mannencollecties.


Givenchy is owned by luxury group LVMH, which also Louis Vuitton , and Céline in his hands. It is not a giant, but a mythical house, and especially thanks to the many years of association of the designer with actress Audrey Hepburn.

Hubert de Givenchy, now 90, began his couturehuis in 1952. In his first collection he showed a legendary become white shirt: the Bettina blouse, to model Bettina Graziani.

Breakfast at Tiffany’s

He dressed Hepburn for heteerst in 1953, to Billy Wilders film Sabrina (the Givenchy thought initially that he appointment was with Katharine Hepburn). The Brussels-born actress has since continually Givenchy, in the movies (Funny Face, a famous little black dress in Breakfast at Tiffany’s) but also private.

Hubert de Givenchy was one of the first couturiers with a prêt-à-porterlijn, Givenchy Université, made in Paris with American machines. In 1969 he started a men’s line, Gentleman Givenchy, followed by shoes, jewellery, scarves, meubeltextiel and kimono’s (plus the interiors of Hilton hotels worldwide,and the Lincoln Continental Mark V).

Givenchy picked up his bags a few years after the acquisition of his house by LVMH in 1988. He was succeeded by successively John Galliano, who less than two years, continued (from july 1995 to October 1996: its passage was a sort of try-out for his next destination: the much larger Dior), Alexander McQueen (1996-2001), and Julien MacDonald (2001-2005) who is not a great impression left behind. Between 2003 and 2006 were the mannencollecties designed by the Briton Ozwald Now.

Crucifixes and Jezusprints

Riccardo Tisci, who took the reins in 2005, was a rather surprising choice: the Italian was only one year earlier in Milan his own label started. Tisci has made Givenchy his own brand of contemporary, a little bit gothic (sometimes straight catholic: crucifixes and Jezusprints), but also sporty (especially the men’s line, which was also popular with fans of streetwear).

The departure of Tisci at Givenchy was previously just as unexpectedly as abrupt. His last collection, for men and couture, took place in the newly renovated round hall of the National library. The rumor mill placed the designer at Versace, though it seems to be that scenario in the meantime, the table swept.

The roddeltantes of the fashion speculated that Virgil Abloh of the reformed American streetwearlabel Off-White might be the crown prince of Givenchy could be. But it was so, Clare Waight Keller, who her stripes earned as artistic director of Chloé, and Pringle (she also had jobs at Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren and Gucci).

In the meantime, also continues to Waight Kellers previous employer not throw in the towel: Chloé opened during the coutureweek last week an impressive maison, with (among others) over three floors-spread exhibition space. The first exhibition is dedicated to the legendary photographer Guy Bourdin. The brand also has a new designer: Natacha Ramsay-Levi, right hand of Nicolas Ghesquière at Balenciaga and Louis Vuitton.

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