Inspired by: Alber’s Philosophy at Vogue Online 

I have always adored the work that Alber Elbaz has done for Lanvin, in fact, just as much as I adore listening to him speak at fashion shows or reading his interviews in the magazines. I delight in Alber’s humour and lightheartedness just as much as I covet a Lanvin asymmetric black dress worn with long black leather gloves, or those wonderful court shoes with the contrasting ankle strap and, those to die for statement necklaces that have the ability to make the simplest of ensembles dazzle. Unfortunately, I don’t possess the pecuniary strength to adorn myself head to toe in Lanvin, but I can afford to bank the quotes of the charming Alber Elbaz.

Lanvin, Alber Elbaz ceative director at Lanvin

“I don’t understand this marathon of fashion,” he said. “Today, designers are expected to produce work that is bigger, better, faster and – these days – cheaper. A singer can quit once he or she has made ten great songs, a director can finish once he or she has made five amazing films, a writer just needs to write three great books. Now let’s look at designers – they produce six to eight shows a year, most designers have a 20-year-long career, so I need to create about 250 collections in that time. Not even Danielle Steel could write 250 books.”

“I don’t take drugs because if I did I’d love them – I’d be a junkie. And because I’m Jewish, I’d probably be a dealer too……I don’t go out to parties because I’d look terrible in pictures. My escape is television – it’s like meditation to me.”

“At Yves Saint Laurent I felt like the son-in-law, like I was part of the family but not quite….When I was fired, I felt like the widow. It was painful and destroying, but it didn’t crush me. I have never been Alber from Saint Laurent, just like I’m not Alber from Lanvin. I am just Alber short. And I am very short.”

“I thought about becoming a doctor,” he said. “I am a hypochondriac, so it made sense to go into medicine – I like nurses, I like hospital food, but I thought ‘ten years is too long to train…'” 

“Yves Saint Laurent gave women power, Chanel liberated them and when I joined Lanvin, I thought ‘what do I bring to women? One day, I received an SMS from a friend in New York – she was in a taxi on the way to court to face her arsehole ex-husband, and she said to me ‘Alber, I am wearing a Lanvin dress, and I feel so protected.’ That to me was the biggest compliment I ever received. To have a 500 gram piece of silk make her feel protected – that made me very happy indeed.”

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