When Hedi Slimane announced his departure from Saint Laurent, it was clear that there would be big shoes to fill at the Parisian label, especially since previous creative directors have included Tom Ford and Alber Elbaz. Well, earlier today, Saint Laurent officially named Anthony Vaccarello as Slimane's successor. We know you might be thinking, "Anthony who?" So, here's what you need to know about him.
The designer isn't exactly a household name, especially in menswear, but the 33-year-old boasts an impressive resume. Born in Belgium, Vaccarello attended La Cambre in Brussels, where he studied sculpture. He graduated in 2006 and, that same year, won the top fashion prize at the annual Hyères Festival in France.
Vaccarello went on to work for Karl Lagerfeld at Fendi, where he designed furs for two years. In 2010, he launched his namesake brand and presented it in Paris for the Spring 2011 season. His collection earned him the Association Nationale pour le Développement des Arts de la Mode award, which has previously been given to Martin Margiela and Christophe Lemaire.
Like Slimane, Vaccarello became known for having an edgy rock n' roll style. In 2011, he described his look to Vogue saying, "It's always black, always sexy." While his womenswear collections are feminine, they have channeled a cool menswear aesthetic not too far from what Saint Laurent has been putting out.
According to WWD, Saint Laurent's President and CEO Francesca Bellettini says that Vaccarello is a "perfect fit" for the brand, explaining that he "impeccably balances elements of provocative femininity and sharp masculinity in his silhouettes. He is the natural choice to express the essence of Yves Saint Laurent."
Vaccarello's early success landed him a gig designing a capsule collection for Versace's Versus label in 2014. Shortly after, he was named the creative director of the sub-label and began his official foray into menswear. Although he had only been in his position for a year, he was able to double sales for the Versus from 2014 to 2015.
His womenswear has also attracted a strong following that includes celebrities like Rihanna and Jennifer Lopez. Unfortunately for them, his eponymous label will be put on hold while he prepares his first collection for Saint Laurent. We have the feeling that when Vaccarello debuts his first Saint Laurent line in October 2016 in Paris, there will likely be something they'll want to snatch up for themselves either way.