By: Jomana Aly
What’s that? Another accusation of stealing designs? That’s right.
The new Balmain S/S19 show at Paris Fashion Week this Friday created controversy and discomfort when some of the looks were kind of familiar to those that are into fashion history.
Designer Thierry Mugler, 69, retired from the runways since 2001, accused creative director Olivier Rousteing of copying his collections at the fashion show. In four posts in the stories of his personal account on Instagram, Mugler made montages comparing his creations of the years 1979, 1990, 1991 and 1998 with those presented in the latest collection of Balmain. A dress with structured hips, similar to a draped white of the brand, was posted with the caption “probably a tribute!”, and in another post, the robotic bra of 1991 was compared to an identical.
In a photo, the designer asks, “Seriously?” Mugler, the father of fashionable aesthetics and one of the greatest designers in France alongside Jean Paul Gaultier, continues the series of postings in a photo in which he sees his black tuxedo with lapel white on his shoulders glued to the side of the same proposal of Rousteing to Balmain. And in the most similar look, a set of jacket and skirt all striped pencil as a 3D prototype, the designer writes “no comment!”
There is no reference to a supposed tribute to the Mugler designs in the text sent to the press after the fashion show. Rousteing describes only to have honored the “unique origins of the Parisian seam”, without citing any of his aesthetes.
“It’s not the catwalk styling, the music and the celebrities that make Paris’s fashion so incredibly inspiring – I believe it to be our unmatched heritage of sewing, our tailoring patterns, intrinsic sculpture and beautification that sets us apart,” he said.
It is not the first time that the originality of a Balmain creation of Olivier Rousteing is questioned. A summer 2015 tailoring look, white and with the trimmed side of the trunk, was pointed out as identical to a 1997 couture proposal from Givenchy.