WHAT is clear from the appointment of Natacha Ramsay-Levi as creative director at Chloé, is that is was a considered decision. Rumours started back in December that the mother-of-one had been lured from her position of four years under Nicolas Ghesquière at Louis Vuitton, but the brand kept its silence until after Ramsay-Levi's predecessor, Clare Waight Keller, had delivered her swansong collection at Paris Fashion Week, with a celebratory party to boot. Now, however, CEO Geoffroy de la Bourdonnaye is ready to reveal why Ramsay-Levi is the chosen one.
“Natacha is remarkable because she is completely natural. She’s bold, she’s unafraid to be herself, she has excellent creative vision, she knows what she wants, she has charisma and she shines,” De la Bourdonnaye told WWD. “She’s a Chloé girl and above all, she’s very experienced and very loyal. She has proven that she is capable of working in different environments and handling the pressure of large brands."
Prior to Louis Vuitton, Ramsay-Levi worked at Balenciaga - also under Ghesquière - for 11 years, and has established a respected reputation among industry insiders for her work at both. De la Bourdonnaye, however, is confident that his new creative director (who he revealed would be arriving without her own studio entourage and instead "rapidly blend in with the rest of the family") will be more than capable of carving out her own niché aesthetic at the brand - and one that rings true with loyal customers and clients.
“The intelligence of great designers is to adapt their style to the houses they work for. When Natacha was at Balenciaga, she did Balenciaga. When she was at Vuitton, she did Vuitton. I am not recruiting the culture or the creative inspiration of Vuitton or Balenciaga. The Chloé girl stays, the Chloé strategy stays,” he explained. “There will be some bad surprises occasionally, but that’s the nature of the creative process. If you don’t allow designers to take risks, you will never have beautiful creative results. I am convinced we will have more good surprises than bad, and that is why I am very confident about this choice."