After 15 years at the helm of Balenciaga, creative director Nicolas Ghesquière is leaving the iconic Parisian brand. Nicolas elevated the brand to It proportions, thanks to the creation of the Lariat bag. While celebrities like Nicole Kidman, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Julianne Moore have slipped into his designs, Nicolas's current muse is Kristen Stewart, who fronts the brand's Florabotanica fragrance. Watch on to hear more about Nicolas's departure, as well as some words from Kristen on working with the designer. On Allison McNamara: StyleMint top, Stella & Dot necklace, H&M jacket.
The end to any relationship is bittersweet, and the news of Nicolas Ghesquière leaving Balenciaga instantly struck a nerve with us. For 15 years, the French designer has been at the helm of the legendary atelier and responsible for making us covet everything from motorcycle Le Dix bags and Lego-like heels to bold-shouldered futuristic silhouettes, gladiator-inspired knee-high sandals, and space-printed sweatshirts. It shouldn't come as a surprise, then, that his penchant for stylish innovation has earned him a very loyal A-list fan base, a fact that has led to many a red carpet fraught with gorgeous, albeit edgier, dresses to lust after.
Longtime friend and muse Charlotte Gainsbourg can be trusted to wear his cutting-edge designs to just about anything; Kristen Stewart, the current face of the brand's perfume Florabotanica, was just spotted wearing his Spring '13 wares to the On the Road premiere; and Diane Kruger wowed in a champagne-hued remake of a 1930s Balenciaga silhouette at the 2004 Met Gala. Add Sienna Miller, Jennifer Connelly, Nicole Kidman, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Miranda Kerr to an already-impressive list of Ghesquière devotees, and you've got quite the lineup of star-studded glamour to pore through. Herein find our favorite Nicolas Ghesquière for Balenciaga red-carpet moments, as we pay homage to the man behind 15 years of impeccable craftsmanship.
Kristen Stewart really turned up the fashion volume in a black and white Balenciaga getup at the premiere of On the Road at the AFI Fest in LA! The actress chose a revealing white crop top with a pair of black high-waist trousers, then finished off with slick black patent pointy pumps. Red lips and a few demure jewels completed Kristen's bold red-carpet style. What we love most about this ensemble is that it balances sexy up top with fashion-forward on bottom. If you dare, mimic Kristen's latest look at your next party by pairing a white crop top with black high-waist pants. Complete your look with red lips and killer black pumps for major oomph.
Kristen Stewart has shown her allegiance to the Balenciaga label more than a few times on the red carpet, but at this weekend's On the Road premiere, she traded her minidress and heels formula for something a little more avant-garde. The actress took the unexpected approach in a black-and-white bustier-style top and pant set from Balenciaga's Spring '13 collection. It's a little menswear-inspired and entirely sexy — and while we've seen Kristen veer into the borrowed-from-the-boys territory before, this is certainly the most revealing look we've seen Kristen take on to date. Still, she offset her exposed midriff with just the right proportion on a pair of classic high-waisted black trousers, then finished with classic Christian Louboutin pumps. Where she did amp up the drama was in her makeup routine — a smoky eye and burgundy lip that accentuated the sexy side of her latest appearance. Click on to see Kristen smolder from every angle — then tell us what you think in the comments.
Balenciaga has announced that Nicolas Ghesquière, its creative director of 15 years, will leave the brand. Ghesquière's last day will be Nov. 30.
In a statement, Ghesquière's boss and PPR CEO, Francois-Henri Pinault, called the designer "an incomparable creative talent" who "brought to Balenciaga an artistic contribution essential to the unique influence of the house." There's no word yet on who will replace Ghesquière — or on what his next move might be.
French designer Nicolas Ghesquière is leaving Balenciaga — where he has been creative director since 1997 — on Nov. 30. This jarring, and very sad, news is cited by both the designer and brand as a "joint decision to end their working relationship." While there is no other announcement regarding Ghesquière's next move or, for that matter, who will succeed him at Balenciaga, we have his latest (and last) collection to serve as his final masterpiece to a 15-year relationship with the house.
Those stories and more in our daily news roundup.
- Shouldn't every day be Saturday? That's the idea behind the new brand Kate Spade Saturday, a standalone label with its own stores and website that will launch for Spring 2013. The price point is about 50 percent lower than Kate Spade New York; the average price for a garment from Saturday is $90. [WWD]
- Vogue isn't just celebrating its 120th anniversary with a new book. On Dec. 6, HBO will premiere the documentary In Vogue: The Editor's Eye, a tribute to legendary editors from Polly Mellen to Grace Coddington. "They have always been our secret weapon," said Anna Wintour. "So it seemed to me that we could celebrate Vogue, and also, at the same time, celebrate these great editors." [Fashionologie Inbox]
- Valentino, Oscar de la Renta, Balenciaga, and M Missoni are each auctioning off one-month Summer internships through CharityBuzz. The money raised will benefit Rosie's Theater Kids, a New York charity that aims to improve the lives of children through performing arts. [Vogue UK]
- The collaborations just won't stop. Kirna Zabete is working on a collection for Nine West that will debut in February. [The Cut]
- Dita Von Teese's first application of red lipstick happened at age 13. "I remember one time putting on a red and thinking, 'This changes everything. This is all you really need,'" she said. [Into the Gloss]
- Photographer Justin Wu cast an international laundry list of models — including Olivia Palermo, RJ King, and River Viiperi — in his latest edition of Boys and Girls of Fashion Week. [YouTube]
Kristen Stewart participated in a live chat today to celebrate Balenciaga's new fragrance, Florabotanica. She opened up about how she met the brand's creative director Nicolas Ghesquière when she was younger, filled us in on her go-to leather jacket, and revealed she's the "Alice" in the fragrance's Alice in Wonderland fantasy. Watch Kristen's interview now!
Nicolas Ghesquiere admits that Balenciaga "had a size issue" when he first started designing for the house 15 years ago. Now, he wants to make sure that the cuts of his innovative, highly regarded clothing can be worn by women of all shapes and sizes.
"We started very skinny, it's true," Ghesquiere said in an interview with The Sunday Times. "Strangely, we didn't have fit models at all to begin with — just to give you an idea of the size of the company. So we did fittings on the girls at the studio and they were often quite petite. I had a tendency to think good cut and small size, but a good cut should come in big sizes, too. That's what I want to focus on — it's the cut, not the sizing, and if people see that they can wear something in a big size, then I did my job."
This week's top stars ran the style gamut in printed pieces, pastel palettes, and chic travel ensembles. Kristen Stewart mixed color into her Fall wardrobe in Paris, working a yellow Balenciaga leather jacket and printed pants, also by the designer; Alessandra Ambrosio chased the fleeting Summer sun in a crisp white blazer, mint Hudson cutoffs, and studded Valentino pumps in LA; and Kim Kardashian wowed us in black and white colorblock Sass & Bide pants in Sydney. These ladies are just a few of the standout style stars, so cruise through to see who else was crowned, then shop their stellar looks for yourself.