Following the bankruptcy of Christian Lacroix, the iconic couturier cut ties with his namesake label when he was unable to secure an investor.
In his place, CEO Nicolas Topiol and the Falic Group recently hired Sacha Walckhoff. The Swiss French designer has been working at Lacroix since 1992, and will now take over creatively at the brand.
Menswear, along with bridal, home textiles, sunglasses, and stationery are the first up to be released, since they’re all are funded through licensing deals.
Women’s ready-to-wear and couture are in the future, but no plans have been finalized. It has been clear from the get-go, however, that Walckhoff is serious about taking the brand in a new, more modern direction – which is clearly essential for its success.
The designer told Fashionista that he sees $25 Lacroix notebooks as part of the brand’s evolution, remarking, "The Falic brothers proposed that we go on, and I believe that the brand can succeed. It’s a personal conviction. When you mention ‘Christian Lacroix,’ people open their eyes wide with excitement, but no one believes that they can actually own Lacroix. I want to change that."
With that change could there be a Christian Lacroix for Target line in the future? Walckhoff seems to be fond of the idea, telling the Huffington Post "Yes why not? Because it’s part of what I’ve been wanting: to get people to touch Lacroix at last. Brands like Target and H&M would be ideal for that. Of course, I won’t do a couture dress for a mass retailer, but to do a small collection for one would be lovely," he said. "I’m open to it. Lacroix is luxury, but the brand’s DNA, as the Spring 2011 collection shows, is about mixing the luxurious and the rough. This creates a large territory to play and craft something everyone could love."
While Walckhoff certainly has a daunting job ahead of him, he seems like a breath of fresh air for a brand that has gone through so much unfortunate turmoil over the past two years. Of course, as we know from Gucci, there’s a thin line between accessible and over-saturation. But the fact that the designer has such a strong tie to Lacroix and the house’s signature aesthetic, while also being open to speaking to bloggers, and excited about possibly working with a retailer like Target, speaks volumes about the prospects of future success.