Balmain Celebrates Flagship New York Store
Balmain celebrated its newest New York retail space, located on 59th Street and Madison Avenue, with a grinning Olivier Rousteing in tow, two years after it opened. The creative director, who has been in charge of the 77-year-old French label for the past ten years, took a break from welcoming his faithful clients and admirers to speak with the press about the occasion.
Rousteing has always allowed Balmain to revel in its Frenchness, but he insists that his ambition over the last decade was to take the company global, as he saw in the founder. “Mr. Balmain was among the first designers to travel to show his clothes, and he was fluent in English. It sounds kind of weird to say this, but at the time, that was rare.”
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Some of the visitors who came out to welcome Olivier Rousteing back to New York included Lea Michelle, Tommy Dorfman, Nina Agdal, and Victor Glemaud. Rousteing hadn’t gone to Manhattan since before the pandemic to see the Madison Avenue store, which opened in September 2020. Balmain New York
“New York has always been such a dream for me, because it’s the city of the dream, it’s the city of dynamism and energy,” the designer said in front of the store. “I know that Balmain is such a French brand from 1945 but what I’ve tried to do in the 10 years of my career at Balmain was always to push the global; Balmain was not only Parisian but international in my mind.”
“I have to say that I would never be who I am without American support, from the many people here,” he continued. “I’m not only talking about celebrities, I’m talking about the press, the journalists, retailers and wholesalers. Tonight is about thanking America for the love and support that they gave me.” It was his first visit to the store, which he described as having “a chic French touch with an American modern vibe.”
The Balmain NFT, a long-term global relationship with MintNFT, was also announced that night. The global partnership with MintNFT creators James Sun and Teddy Zee will deliver a continuous thread of NFTs by the designer, building on and matching the designer’s creative thread at Balmain. Previously, the designer developed an NFT in collaboration with Mattel’s Barbie for a Neiman Marcus capsule collection.
Before the night was over, Rousteing disclosed his favorite look from last week’s Met Gala. “My favorite look from the Met Ball last week, I had a couple that I really loved but to be completely honest I would say…the Kim K look,” he said. “It was not only about the dress, it was about the concept and saying how iconic she is today, and how iconic was Marilyn [Monroe], and bringing them together on this red carpet showed that all the fights she went through to be the woman she is today and being respected by the fashion industry. Now she has access to the most iconic woman of the world. It’s a good revolution.” Balmain New York
Photo: via Fashion Network
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