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10-04-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by agee View Post
Thus far I am leaning towards Rick Owens as the successor, and I wish Christophe Decarnin well in his future endeavors.
hmmm

tbh, a mixture of Decarnin and Owens would be.... orgasmic...

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10-04-2011
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This makes me happy!! not Decarnins health, but a new creative director for Balmain

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10-04-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fashionista-ta View Post
Wow, I am surprised!! Sounds to me like a case of overblown ego killing the goose that's laying the golden eggs ... won't be the first time or the last, I suppose.
Exactly. And I don't know why so many of you are focusing on what will become of brand Balmain. The phenomenen of Balmainia is all about what Decarnin has done. Stuff the brand of itself. It was in the doldrums pre Decarnin and there again in all likelihood it shall now return.

The SS11 was kind of prophetic. Not only the culmination of a 5 year gradual process of 'de-ladying' a tired old backwater brand but the 'My Way' soundtrack as epitaph. Of course, given Christophe's ability to ring a till, should he wish to then he'll return.

As for the brand - back in early March I wanted to introduce a friend to more runway shows and chose Balmain. It was like, oh, umm, well, it's usually better than that. The magic was already gone.

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10-04-2011
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Raf Simons... imagine the female version of his Raf Simons Man at Balmain...

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11-04-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tentacl Ventricl View Post
Exactly. And I don't know why so many of you are focusing on what will become of brand Balmain. The phenomenen of Balmainia is all about what Decarnin has done. Stuff the brand of itself. It was in the doldrums pre Decarnin and there again in all likelihood it shall now return.

The SS11 was kind of prophetic. Not only the culmination of a 5 year gradual process of 'de-ladying' a tired old backwater brand but the 'My Way' soundtrack as epitaph. Of course, given Christophe's ability to ring a till, should he wish to then he'll return.

As for the brand - back in early March I wanted to introduce a friend to more runway shows and chose Balmain. It was like, oh, umm, well, it's usually better than that. The magic was already gone.
Agreed. He needed to up the ante, but his formula was working, though getting tired. It needn't be a parting of ways, as it was working very well.

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11-04-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CrisGalaxy View Post
Raf Simons... imagine the female version of his Raf Simons Man at Balmain...
Are you talking about Decarins successor? I mean... Raf seems to be happy at Jil Sander.

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12-04-2011
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^and something tells me that balmain position might not pay as well as the jil sander gig. the raf simons rumor about him decamping to ysl makes more sense.

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12-04-2011
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What? Then whats gonna happen to Sander?

Eeeek! I hate the musical-designer-house-chairs game.

Whats going to happen to Decarnin now? Is he gonna keep on designing?

Im just wondering

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12-04-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zazie View Post
Agreed. He needed to up the ante, but his formula was working, though getting tired. It needn't be a parting of ways, as it was working very well.
I meant return to designing, either for another house or an eponymous line. Not return to Balmain. Because there, clearly, there does need to be a parting of the ways. It's almost beyond belief that despite almost unrivalled commercial success, the moneymen have seen fit to raise 'creative differences' which have driven DeCarnin to the edge. You'd think they might pragmatically apply an 'if it ain't broke don't fix it' mentality. I guess we should never be surprised at the foolishness of the suits.

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12-04-2011
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I think that Christophe Decarnin is talented and I am rooting for him, but Balmainia was a trend and he has not really proven himself as lead designer for a major label in a sustained way, so I agree with the point that he needed to up the ante / step up his game. The real difficulty in doing this, and it is understandable that it can take its toll on someone mentally and physically, is that the initial success created a demand and that demand had to be met through production, distribution and marketing, which has a cost, and oftentimes fixed costs that have to "serviced," which puts even more pressure on the designer to be commercially successful in future collections. I really feel for designers / design houses that do not have accessories and / or cosmetics as a significant part of their revenues, because that can serve as a cushion for the changes that are a necessary part of sustaining relevancy.


Last edited by agee; 12-04-2011 at 04:01 PM.
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12-04-2011
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^ Idk. Was there any evidence that orders were down on SS11? My understanding was that anything Balmain was continuing to fly out the door.
Hardly a brand in crisis. The opposite I'd have said. Ok success can carry pressure with it but a full order book surely hasn't half the pressure of an empty or declining one. Even if SS11 had seen a little leveling off surely the position relative to 2006 still looked like a different universe. So you take a wider view. That it should all go tits up on such an upcurve is what's so hard to understand and which seems to speak of chronic mismanagement some way some how.

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12-04-2011
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I never stated that the house was in the midst of a downturn, but it is easy to predict that a jacket with heavily padded shoulders and shiny cross bars ain't gonna be red hot five years from now. As far as Balmain's current position vis a vis its position in 2006, they may be running up against a "mo money, mo problems" situation which is the point I was trying to make in my previous post. Because of the Decarnin induced "Balmainia" new stores were opened, retailers started carrying the label and existing retailers increased their floor space. So now you have to keep that pipeline filled and you can only play the "I lifted this label out of the muck" card so much. I am not saying abandon the aesthetic, but design houses do this all the time with their collections where they present their core and/or best selling looks and then transition into something new and new does not necessarily mean radically different, in this case, what is the next big thing in rock chick wear.

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12-04-2011
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Quote:
Originally Posted by agee View Post
I never stated that the house was in the midst of a downturn, but it is easy to predict that a jacket with heavily padded shoulders and shiny cross bars ain't gonna be red hot five years from now. As far as Balmain's current position vis a vis its position in 2006, they may be running up against a "mo money, mo problems" situation which is the point I was trying to make in my previous post. Because of the Decarnin induced "Balmainia" new stores were opened, retailers started carrying the label and existing retailers increased their floor space. So now you have to keep that pipeline filled and you can only play the "I lifted this label out of the muck" card so much. I am not saying abandon the aesthetic, but design houses do this all the time with their collections where they present their core and/or best selling looks and then transition into something new and new does not necessarily mean radically different, in this case, what is the next big thing in rock chick wear.
Very keen insight here...

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13-04-2011
  44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by agee View Post
I never stated that the house was in the midst of a downturn, but it is easy to predict that a jacket with heavily padded shoulders and shiny cross bars ain't gonna be red hot five years from now. As far as Balmain's current position vis a vis its position in 2006, they may be running up against a "mo money, mo problems" situation which is the point I was trying to make in my previous post. Because of the Decarnin induced "Balmainia" new stores were opened, retailers started carrying the label and existing retailers increased their floor space. So now you have to keep that pipeline filled and you can only play the "I lifted this label out of the muck" card so much. I am not saying abandon the aesthetic, but design houses do this all the time with their collections where they present their core and/or best selling looks and then transition into something new and new does not necessarily mean radically different, in this case, what is the next big thing in rock chick wear.
while i agree with this sentiment, it takes one 'it bag' or 'it fragrance' to turn that around not a departure from an aesthetic. let's remember we're talking fashion here: dolce and gabbana have survived on a quarter century on lace and ladybits, michael kors on the sable and sportswear: in the end, most enduring fashion houses have learned to carve out a niche for themselves and fill it with the expected and surprise with the occassional unexpected dash. decarnin, for all of his criticism, worked his way toward creating a niche for the house of balmain. i do feel, however, that the pressure to take the house 'to the next level' may have pushed him to the brink. it wouldn't take a departure as many think here, but it would take 'selling out' in a way that many overlook at other houses like these (whether we're talking high-tops and handbags at lanvin or bridge lines and briefs at calvin klein). in the end, one has to keep the money flowing in at a faster and faster rate and not everyone has the wherewithal to sacrifice their 'core' to make that happen.

with that said, i do think decarnin prepared to take on the challenge one speaks about here: the menswear found an audience just like the womenswear did and although many in this forum liked to remark that nothing new came out of the house, he kept pushing the aesthetic into different arenas all while clandestinely expanding the houses offerings: it went from jeans and blazers, to mini dresses and booties, to leather pants and bomber jackets, to pantsuits and floorlength gowns. who knows what he had to present next, but he had hardly reached the bottom of that mine.

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Last edited by mikeijames; 13-04-2011 at 03:24 PM.
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13-04-2011
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^ I don't know about the satin tennis shoes, but Lanvin's handbags are certainly not an example of selling out.

Has there been any leaking of details about the differences the designer and the suits had about the approach that should be taken to growth?

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