Posted by Stephan Moskovic | May 9th, 2015

The LVMH 8:
Pt.3 Faustine Steinmetz

On May 22nd, LVMH will announce the winner of their 2015 Young Fashion Designer Prize from a pool of 8 finalists – Arthur Arbesser, Coperni, Craig Green, Faustine Steinmetz, Jacquemus, Marques’Almeida, Off-White, and Vetements. Started in 2013, the prize was launched to champion standout talent and foster their labels. Winning means getting a seal of approval from a jury of fashion’s foremost designers and industry professionals like Nicolas Ghesquiere, Marc Jacobs, Karl Lagerfeld, and LVMH’s own Delphine Arnault. Aside from being recognized by the industry, the winner receives a 300,000 euro grant and a year’s worth of expert support from the foundation. Of course, success in the industry for these designers isn’t reliant on winning, but it certainly sets the stage.

Presenting Models.com’s exclusive week-long spotlight on each of the designers in anticipation of their final presentation at the Fondation Louis Vuitton in Paris and the announcement of the winner on May 22nd.

The LVMH 8

Series editors: Irene Ojo-Felix and Steven Yatsko
Photography: Steven Yatsko for Models.com
Stylist: William Graper @ The Wall Group
Art Direction: Stephan Moskovic
Hair: Takayoshi Tsukisawa
Makeup: Kim Weber
Production: Jazmin Alvarez
Photo assistant: Jason Acton
Manicurist: Natalie Pavloski @ LMC Worldwide
Shoes: Martiniano
Portrait courtesy of the designer

Text by Jonathan Shia

Models:
Aamito Lagum / DNA Models
Irina Shnitman / IMG

FaustineSteinmetzPortrait640

Faustine Steinmetz’s home may be in London, but her heart remains in France. “I think the part of my work which is very focused on the concept definitely comes from my education in France,” the young designer says. “They taught me that the final object is nothing if there is not a strong idea behind it.”

The “concept” behind Steinmetz’s intellectual designs is the reproduction of everyday items, which for Spring 2015 meant working classic blue denim into textured, layered, almost sculptural new creations that are, she explains, “about the material more than the shape.” Fittingly, she showed the same silhouette eight times, each one manipulated through a different technique. Each piece is made by hand using a traditional hand loom, and can sometimes take over a week complete, offering a sense of personal dedication that is often lost in today’s era of fast fashion.

“If you are not bringing anything to the table, you might as well not be there.”

Steinmetz credits the celebrated Louise Wilson, who taught her at Central Saint Martins, with helping to shape the critical eye she brings to her work today. “Louise was very hard with me, but she taught me that good work does not matter if it is not new,” Steinmetz explains. “If you are not bringing anything to the table, you might as well not be there. It became my main criteria when I design. I discard most of my samples because of this rule.”

But Steinmetz’s education began well before her years at CSM, when she spent her entire adolescence holed up in the library of the Centre Georges Pompidou, researching as many artists and designers as she could discover—a habit she continues to this very day. “I actually missed the call from LVMH to tell me I was a finalist because I was in that very library reading and they couldn’t reach me,” she laughs.

They managed to get through to her in the end, and Steinmetz says that while the grant money would be helpful in expanding her team of artisans, winning would mean more to her than just €300,000. “For me, getting the mentoring and having access to the LVMH network is equally as valuable as the money.”

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2 Comments to “The LVMH 8: Pt.3 Faustine Steinmetz”

  1. Theo says:

    Faustine work would be greatly appreciated in fashion. The work coming from the individuals hands involved is moving. Win or lose, I will always be rooting for Faustine.

  2. ryostylin says:

    Faustine is defintely my favourite from this collective. A dress will always be a dress, and a skirt a skirt. But the inventive way she’s been able to transform ordinary denim into pile-like textures is beyond amazing. If anything, it’s more like alchemy.

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