French fashion house Chloé set to appoint Natacha Ramsay-Levi as its creative director

Ramsay-Levi’s shift from Louis Vuitton to Chloé, underscores the fact that there has been a high turnover rate of staff at the design studio in the last two years. This could be partially attributed to long working hours and stressful environment, as per former employees.

France’s fashion industry is set to a new round of a change of leadership: Chloé is set to appoint Natacha Ramsay-Levi as its creative director. Ramsay currently holds the number two spot in Louis Vuitton, said industry sources.

2016 saw a series of reshuffles at fashion houses, including Yves Saint Laurent, Celine, Hugo Boss, Dior, and Kering midst a dip in luxury spending by consumers. 2017 promises to be another round of musical chairs.

The departure of Louis Vuitton’s Ramsay-Levi raises a few pertinent questions on the future inner working of the design studio which is headed by Ghesquiere who joined Louis Vuitton in 2013 before making his name at Balenciaga.

While Ramsay-Levi is associated with modern looks tailored around hard fabrics such as synthetics and leather, Richemont-owned Chloé has had a tradition of designing traditional flowing romantic silhouettes.

It would be interesting to see how Chloé bridges both of these seemingly opposing concepts to bring out something more ‘ravissant’ and fresher.

Fashion consultants including Demna Gvasalia at Balenciaga and Hedi Slimane at Yves Saint Laurent, have argued that a new artistic direction, if well thought out, could be what the brand requires to draw consumer attention and in the process boost its sales.

Clare Waight Keller, Chloé’s current creative director, who is a mother of three, decided not to renew her contract, which ends in March 2017, as she has had to commute from London to Paris regularly since her family moved to London last June. According to sources familiar with the matter at hand, Keller now wishes she could stop the daily grind of the commute.

According to analysts’ estimates, Chloé generates a yearly sales of around $417.20 million (400 million euros).

Chloé declined to comment.

According to industry sources, following this reshuffle, Ghesquiere could end his collaboration with Louis Vuitton prematurely. As per LVMH his contract is up for renewal in 2018.

Last year Ghesquiere had told Canal Plus, a French TV channel that he wishes to create his own label. He did not provide any further details.

As per fashion recruitment sources, in recent months, Louis Vuitton executives have been actively looking for a replacement.

When asked to respond to requests for comments, Louis Vuitton and LVMH declined to comment on Ramsay-Levi’s eventual departure.

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Categories: Creativity, Entrepreneurship, HR & Organization, Strategy

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