Collection Statement

“Our aim is timelessness, never time travel.” That’s the succinct message that Olivier Rousteing found himself repeating often, almost as a mantra, as the Balmain Creative Director walked the fashion world’s leading editors through his most recent Paris presentations. Although he and his team regularly reference classic designs pulled directly from Balmain’s rich archives, Rousteing stressed that he was determined to design for today’s Balmain Army, and that he would never simply try to replicate a golden past. To underline that point, he relied on a famous phrase from the house founder. Pierre Balmain’s often-repeated diktat, “Le style que l’on ressuscite doit être adapté au présent” (which translates to “a resurrected style must be adapted to the present”), reflected Monsieur Balmain’s steadfast conviction that true fashion should continually evolve—for, as he noted in his autobiography, unless a designer aims to simply create period costumes for the theatre, collections must always reflect the modern needs and the distinctive tastes of each succeeding generation. So, Rousteing notes, while his runways do constantly build upon an extraordinary inheritance, he is equally inspired by the uniquely audacious, optimistic and forward-looking values that have always set apart the house of Balmain. At its heart, Rousteing’s formula is a simple one, which he has been repeating, collection after collection, for over a decade: the designer draws upon an incredible legacy to create offerings that are clearly designed for today.


And Olivier Rousteing’s surprising, modern spins on Balmain’s singular legacy—which recently resulted in the house’s critically praised pre-fall and fall runways for men and women, as well as the unparalleled success of the Beyoncé x Balmain Renaissance Collection—has clearly been channeled into Rousteing’s latest Balmain Kids collection. Throughout, the extensive Balmain Kids offerings build upon the one-of-a- kind codes, spirit and silhouette of Balmain. The house founder’s love of clever takes on bows, polka-dots, sharp graphics and intriguing patterns can be spotted in each distinct grouping of designs. And Olivier Rousteing’s determination to meld those house signatures with influences drawn from today’s pop culture and diverse modern streets is just as evident. “I always say that this house’s DNA can be easily summed up in just one line,” notes Rousteing. “By knowing where we come from, we can clearly see where we are headed.” There can be no doubt that the latest Balmain Kids collection definitely builds upon that unique genetic formula.