Courtesy of Ann Demeulemeester
Following the announcements of Alessandro Michele’s resignation from Gucci and the closure of Raf Simmons’ namesake label over the past several weeks, the fashion industry is still in flux, but now there is finally news that heralds a new era. In March 2023, at Paris Fashion Week, Ludovic de Saint Sernin, who is well-known for his own provocative eponymous label, will debut his first collection for Ann Demeulemeester.
The firm will undergo a creative makeover as a result of De Saint Sernin’s hiring. Antonioli, who co-founded the New Guards Group, purchased Ann Demeuelemeester in 2020 and has been managing it up to this point with an unidentified design group. Demeulemeester is distantly engaged even though she left her namesake label about ten years ago. It’s an odd arrangement, but she and Antonioli are close friends, so she oversaw a display of her archive at Pitti Uomo this summer and, it would appear, has given her approval to collections built very much in her likeness.
De Saint Sernin, like Demeulemeester, was born in Belgium. The l’ESAA Duperré-educated designer, who was reared in Paris, debuted his namesake line in 2017. He soon gained notoriety for his hedonistic style and binary-defying approach to apparel design. De Saint Sernin has developed a devoted following of It-girls and It-boys for his body-formatted knits, including Dua Lipa, Hailey Bieber, Bad Bunny, and Troye Sivan. He advocates for what might be called equal opportunity nudity, dressing all genders in sheer suits, crystal mesh tanks, lace-up briefs, and “body-formatted” knits.
WWD received a statement from the house regarding the announcement, “Authorship and autobiography gain centrality, as Ludovic de Saint Sernin shapes the Ann Demeulemeester traits around his vision, proclivities and individuality, offering a first-person reading and the connection with today’s audience that comes from that.” The statement continued, “Sensuality, tension, silhouette, fluidity, wildness and a graphic feel are defining pillars of the language Ludovic de Saint Sernin is about to build as he traces the new course of Ann Demeulemeester, injecting his approach to fashion as a tool to shape and free one’s presence and appearance.”