French designer Thierry Mugler took some time out his day yesterday (September 29, 2018) to critique Balmain’s spring 2019 presentation, held during Paris Fashion Week.
On Instagram stories, the 69-year-old Mugler uploaded images from Balmain’s spring 2019 runway next to shots of his own designs from 1979, 1991, 1998 and 1990. Images were captioned with running commentary reading: “Probably a tribute ha ha!” “Seriously?” “Really?” and “No comment!”
On Vogue, Balmain designer Olivier Rousteing described the collection as “a new kind of sexy,” but made no mention of Mugler. Rather he described the looks as Egypt meets Paris. “I’m really appreciating the fact that we’re in this really French, Parisian place, but over there, you have this [ancient Egyptian] obelisk. Being French doesn’t mean it’s about blood—you can be a mix [of different cultures] and be French. There’s something really personal in that message.”
Truth be told, Mugler’s futuristic sculpted designs (his 1992 motorcycle bustier is perhaps his most famous) influenced many so it wouldn’t be surprising if Rousteing’s designs were copies of copies.
The Thierry Mugler name since 1997 has been owned by Clarins Fragrance Group, which continued to manufacture Mugler perfumes but shuttered the label in 2003. Clarins relaunched the label in 2010 and brought on Nicola Formichetti as creative director and he changed the name of the label to Mugler. The latest collection was designed by Casey Cadwallader.
Balmain isn’t the only designer that has inspired Mugler’s ire. In an interview with the NY Times, Mugler, who revealed he refers to himself as Manfred Thierry Mugler, complained about Clarins publishing a retrospective book titled Thierry Mugler: Galaxie Glamour.
“You know I am suing them because of that book,” he said. “They wanted to do a book and I disagreed. Why should we do a book now and open the door to our archives and show even more things so that people can rip us off? I don’t see the point.”
Check out Mugler’s critiques below.