‘A Stephane Rolland creation begins with Rolland intimately getting to know his client, their personality, strengths and frailties, but most importantly their ambitions’
THE NEW IDENTITY COURTS
Master Parisian Couturier Stephane Rolland already plays this role to an extent in the Middle Eastern courts, having built a couture business bigger than Dior’s by empowering public figures, Princesses and Sheikhas, many of them role models.
The Haute Couture House of Stephane Rolland is, however, some what of an exception today, focused on designing dresses for individual patrons rather than supporting a fashion brand.
It shares its philosophy with the greats of the 20th century – Madam Gres, Balenciaga and Hartnell – a fundamental belief in the power of Haute Couture to achieve a woman’s dreams and ambitions.
Rolland rose to prominence in the Haute Couture world when Pierre Bergé – business and life partner to Yves Saint Laurent – met with him when he was only 20. Although dreaming of working with Saint Laurent, Bergé mysteriously told him “You will meet someone, and that person will help you”. Things became clear to Rolland shortly thereafter. Bergé had recognised his great talent and set an extraordinary career in motion.
Within a year Rolland was Artistic Director at Balenciaga. He later took over at Jean Louis Scherrer Haute Couture, the power-couture house synonymous with the 1980’s and exaggerated shoulders.
After 10 years he founded his own house, Stephane Rolland Haute Couture and became the youngest of a handful of Parisian designers officially granted “Haute Couture” status.
Unlike most designers, Rolland takes much of his influence from the art world, feeling history’s great artists to be most in touch with the sentiments and emotions of the human condition. He also sees a much more nuanced understanding of beauty in the art world, his collections forming his own very personal expression.
His style echoes that of Cristóbal Balenciaga – the most sensual of lines subordinate only to elegance. Simplicity rules in a world of less-is overwhelmingly more. Sculptural and ever so subtle, reminiscent of Brancusi – feminine, mysterious and with the slightest change in contour communicating everything.
As with Balenciaga, voluminous and structural forms charged with emotion complement and contrast to delicate and powerful feminine lines. Compositions of extraordinary balance result.