Decarnin out at Balmain

Christophe Decarnin, head designer of Balmain for the past five years and responsible for one of the most distinct looks of Paris fashion, is leaving the house,
Women's Wear Daily reports.

An official announcement is expected on April 6. According to the trade paper, his successor - rumored to be an internal creative - will be named shortly thereafter.

A potential candidate might be the house's stylist Melanie Ward, who took over from Emmanuelle Alt when she was named French Vogue's editor-in-chief, and who completed the collection after Decarnin's mysterious no-show last Paris fashion week.

His absence at the label's runway show had spurred speculation about his future at Balmain. His failing to take the traditional bow had many attendees twittering, and it was reported that the designer had checked into a mental health hospital back in January - possibly fueled by substance abuse.

However, WWD says that "sources close to the designer say speculation about Decarnin's mental health was overblown...In fact, tensions between the designer and Balmain's chairman and chief executive officer Alain Hivelin had reached a breaking point, with the two men said to have widely divergent views on the company's strategy and future direction."

Decarnin joined Balmain in 2005 and coined the brand's signature rock'n'roll look of bold shoulders and skinny jeans that a few years later caused a frenzy often described as 'Balmania.'

 

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