With a £105 starting price for t-shirts and evening gowns hovering around the £795 mark, this isnt H&M. But its a welcome way into the brand for fans to whom a runway piece has always been out of reach.
We see Pierre Balmain as a new and distinct brand that is inspired by the successes and history of a great house, but offers a look and product that respond[s] to the needs and desires of todays marketplace, Alain Hivelin, Balmain
chairman and CEO, told WWD.
The new line will land in stores from December, with a major push into international markets.
More interesting, perhaps, than the launch dates and mumbo jumbo about how the new line translates the codes of Balmain in a more casual and relaxed manner (Hivelin again), is the fact that Balmain Creative Director Olivier Rousteing will not have a hand in Pierre Balmains design.
Before Rousteing succeeded Christophe Decarnin at Balmain in April
, we were among the commentators who suggested that excessive obligations
and inadequate support had coalesced to make fashion design a high-risk industry. Could it be that by establishing a separate design team, and not even claiming Rousteings notional involvement in the spin-off line, Balmain is protecting its investment in its new designer? Or are they just distancing the lead designer of their ultra-expensive line from that which is merely pricey? Well have to see...
Take a look at Balmain's latest collection...