Rihanna x Iman and Naomi Campbell x Balmain
Phresh Out the Runway.
Under new management, a 28 year old black image of flagrant modernity, Olivier Rousteing is bringing a new attitude to fashion.
As the creative director of Balmain, Rousteing is determined not to design clothes but to also bring a new vision to fashion - made clear when he named Rihanna as the new face of Balmain, when the singer starred in the fashion house’s Spring/Summer 2014 collection.
Forgoing the help of a stylist (“If I made a mistake, I wanted it to be my own,” he says), Rousteing pulled together his first collection, for resort 2012, in two short months, and with it set the tone for a more refined—albeit no less sex-fueled—Balmain. “I loved working with Christophe, but we exist in two different worlds,” Rousteing says. “He’s rock ’n’ roll; I’m hip-hop. He’s more street wear; I’m more couture. He’s into jeans; I prefer a tailored suit jacket and pants. We both like a girl to look sexy, but we express it in different ways.”
For fall, he presented a polished hip-hop/safari mash-up that opened with the black model Jourdan Dunn. But it is perhaps the photographs seen here, featuring Rihanna, Naomi Campbell, and Iman, that best express his vision for Balmain. “These women are inspiring to so many different people,” he says. “Bringing them together represents the concept I’m working toward.”