En el mundo existen aproximadamente 100 compradores de Alta Costura. Japón es el país con el mayor número, le sigue India y el tercer lugar lo ocupa Estados Unidos. Desde hace más de una década se ha advertido que la alta costura en algún momento va a desaparecer. Y que Christian Lacroix anunciara el primero de diciembre que abandonaría dicha técnica es un indicio de esto.
Aquí les dejó el mejor artículo que encontré sobre dicha noticia. Lo más importante es que ya solo producirá perfumes y accesorios, adiós a los vestidos de ensueño
In a ruling which brought to an end months of uncertainty and years of sartorial stardom, Paris's commercial court approved a turnaround plan for the struggling business which entails the closure of its world-renowned haute couture and prêt-á-porter (ready to wear) lines.
The restructuring, outlined by its US owners, envisages the once mighty label being reduced to a licensing operation for perfumes and accessories. Of a workforce of 120, only 15-20 staff would remain.
Lacroix's chief executive, Nicolas Topiol, said he was relieved by the decision, and did not rule out prospective buyers from coming forward in the future. The label had avoided total liquidation and discussions with interested parties were ongoing, he said.
Last night the French minister for industry, Christian Estrosi, said he "had not lost hope" for the house.
But industry figures warned that, if the business remained without a buyer, the decision would mark the end of an era.
"I hope someone will come forward. Otherwise it will be the end of this incredible know-how," fellow couturier Alexis Mabille told the Guardian last night. "Christian has a style that is totally unique. No one else has this mixture of the delicate and the spectacular, this kind of poetic sensibility. French couture owes him a lot."
The turnaround plan was deemed by the court to be the most viable option for a business which had limped through years of financial trouble only to be dealt a knockout blow by the economic crisis.
The house was sold in 2005 by LVMH, the luxury goods giant which had helped found it with Lacroix in 1987, to the Falic family, owners of the US retail group Duty Free Americas. In May it went into administration.
Despite interest from several potential buyers the owners have been unable so far to save the label from oblivion.
Their plan for the label, which could have been rejected by the court as it envisages the closure of the business's core activities, is to focus on licensing deals which they hope will continue the Lacroix name and dig it out of debt.
Even in its heyday, the house failed to make a profit. In its 22-year lifetime it is thought to have made losses of around €150m (£136m).
Industry observers have blamed Lacroix's decline on his inability to translate his artistic verve into financial profit. The designer liked to focus on clothes that would cost huge amounts of money to make and were unlikely to ever be worn. Jean-Jacques Picart, who helped launch the brand with Lacroix in 1987 and now works for LVMH, said his former colleague had had "neither the luck nor the intelligence to find himself a chief executive capable of turning his designs into gold".
Speaking on French radio last week, 58-year-old Lacroix said he had realised soon after the business began that there was a definite discrepancy between his artistic vision and financial reality.
His greatest concern, he said, was for his loyal legion of seamstresses and tailors.
"Christian Lacroix forever" read the banner at the label's last haute couture show, in July. Such support was a measure of how important the name was to Parisian glamour. The slogan could almost be shorthand for unapologetically expensive high fashion.would also be understood by those outside fashion's upper echelons.
His designs won acclaim when the label launched in 1987, although the business never returned a profit.
Lacroix debuted the pouf skirt, which remains his signature look. His use of sumptuous fabrics epitomised the 1980s, but by the end of the decade it was out of step with the economic climate. As the years rolled by, fashion became more minimalist and Lacroix's decadence looked dated.
The loss of the label leaves a lack of frivolity in Parisian fashion. As he told Time magazine in 1987, couture should be "fun, foolish, almost unwearable".
La falda pouf
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