Style Spotlight: Balenciaga


For many years, Balenciaga was the brand name you need to know to even be considered as a "cool" girl. And although Balenciaga has its origins in the couture creations of Spanish designer Cristobal Balenciaga, the label's long-standing history (more than 70 years in total) has seen its move to Paris and transformation into a cutting-edge brand coveted by celebrities and street style stars. Thanks to the likes of hot It Girls of the early 2000, such as Mischa Barton, Nicole Richie and the cast of MTV's The Hills, the fashion house's Le Dix Motorcycle bags became the ultimate arm candy any girl worth her salt wanted to have. This modern reincarnation of Balenciaga was the handiwork of Nicolas Ghesquière, who took the helm in 1997 and created the iconic leather goods we associate with the fashion house today. 


It is interesting to note that in the first few years of Ghesquiere's rein, the Gucci Group had said that they would replace him if Balenciaga didn't become profitable within the year 2007. Under Ghesquiere's charge, Balenciaga thrived and became one of the most profitable brands under the group. His fall/winter 2005 collection for the fashion house was not only profitable, but also attracted a number of celebrity customers including editor-in-chief at Vogue Anna Wintour.


A look from Balenciaga fall/winter 2005 collection by Nicolas Ghesquiere

A look from Balenciaga fall/winter 2005 collection by Nicolas Ghesquiere

A look from Balenciaga fall/winter 2005 collection by Nicolas Ghesquiere


Balenciaga is also very well known for creating avant-garde structural pieces, straddling the edge of fashion and forecasting the future of women's ready-to-wear fashion. One of the most iconic ad campaigns for the house was for its fall/winter 2006 collection, starring top model and Queen of Poses Coco Rocha. 
Vintage Balenciaga garments are very popular among influential fashion editors, Hollywood stars, and top models, and have been seen on Sienna Miller, Lara Bingle, Raquel Zimmerman, Caroline Trentini, Emmanuelle Alt, Hilary Rhoda, Jennifer Garner, and Stephanie Seymour, among others.

Then in 2012, in a move that shocked the industry and fans alike, Nicolas Ghesquière announced that he was parting ways with Balenciaga. It was later announced that American designer Alexander Wang, known for his white T-shirts, was to take over the reins of Balenciaga.