Christian Lacroix and Little Missy
Long ago in the mid aught 2000s, I visited the Maison of Christian Lacroix for the first time. I had been going regularly to his Haute Couture and pret-a-porter shows since the nineties. I knew that when I took the plunge and bought Haute Couture, it would be from Mr. Lacroix. I even dreamt that I would give my Haute Couture to a museum. Well, anyone who reads this blog knows that sometimes dreams come true. I did collect many beautiful pieces from Mr. Lacroix and they are now all at the de Young Museum in San Francisco.
2008 in New York City, wearing Christian Lacroix Haute Couture
But here is the first ensemble I bought from Mr. Lacroix, in an outtake from my book with Frederic Aranda, Electric Fashion. We shot this in Regent's Park, London.
Imagine wearing something this beautiful. I treated the couture like children, for I knew my Lacroix pieces would someday be moving on to their next home, the de Young.
This 1999 pret-a-porter Lacroix coat is nearly at the couture standard. This is also the first piece from Lacroix I purchased and I am never parting with it.
I loved this jacket. It is so 18th century, so very Lacroix
This ensemble was hand painted. Mr. Lacroix said I reminded him of a Provencal Heroine. I said yes, Je M'appelle Marie de Renal, (I call myself Marie de Renal, after Madame de Renal in The Red and the Black by Stendahl).
Needless to say, a dialogue with the designer is divine. It helps to know your French literature, at least it did in my day when I was looking at couture. Yves Saint Laurent often had literary references as well, as did Mr. Lagerfeld for Chanel.
Here is the Vogue.com story where Mr. Lacroix talks about my collection at the de Young. This coat, which I owned and gave to the de Young was one of Mr. Lacroix's favourites. It was one of mine, too, and as I recounted in the book Electric Fashion, I once put this coat in Kate's and Laura's room when they were staying with me to inspire them, early in their Rodarte career. I told that story to Mr. Lacroix and he liked it.
I think that Christian Lacroix is the greatest living designer. I have been lucky indeed to have been able to wear his clothes and then give them to the people of San Francisco.