Her favorite color? Red: the symbol of intoxication, calling to mind a poppy flower or a dress undone just enough for a hand to pass through. The flamboyant Sonia Rykiel illustrates in and of herself a certain vision of Parisian chic.
Known for her legendary little sweaters and her arrogant red hairstyle, she is the image of liberated sophistication and French elegance. It was when she was expecting that she began making clothes, creating pieces that she could wear throughout her pregnancy. Her sweaters and dresses were sold in a small Parisian boutique called “Laura.” Four years later, faced with the furor caused by her creations, she started her own company, Sonia Rykiel, and opened her first boutique on Paris’s Rive Gauche.
Sonia Rykiel amused herself by defending the lost cause and chose for her battle flag what others might consider outdated. She produced sweaters with visible seams, and did away with hems and dress linings. She designed an inimitable silhouette, impossible to miss with its stripes, sequins and messages inscribed on her pullovers.
The Sonia Rykiel brand has grown to include the name “Nathalie,” a children’s line named after her daughter. Nathalie herself is teeming with ideas for developing her mother’s empire. In October 2002, she created a new section called Sonia Rykiel Woman in which she assembled what she called the “Indispensables”: The timeless basics that make up the Sonia Rykiel brand image, as well as a selection of objects dedicated to women and their pleasures. In the basement of the Sonia Rykiel boutique, Nathalie created an ultra chic and girly boudoir where one can explore all of sensuality’s aspects.
Nathalie Rykiel, the first to exploit the concept of the chic sex shop, introduced the term “Sex Toys” into the French culture. The brand also includes a men’s collection, perfumes, and cosmetics and accessories lines. In 2001, Sonia Rykiel launched a line of best-of, the Modern/Vintage Sonia Rykiel.
Interested by culture and literature, Sonia Rykiel does not confine herself to designing prêt-a-porter to express her creativity. She is also the author of in-depth works on the history of clothing, as well as children’s stories and successful novels including Les lèvres rouges (The Red Lips) and Casanova était une femme (Casanova was a woman). She is a member of various clubs including “Croqueurs de chocolat” (chocolate lovers) and the “Amateurs de cigares de Havane” (Cuban cigar lovers). She is the ambassador of Bordeaux wines and defines herself as a daily hedonist.
Tributes were made to her all over the world for her anniversary shows and exhibitions, especially for her participation in the renovation of some of the most beautiful Parisian hotels, and for the creation of the Sonia Rykiel rose with the help of the famous Jean-Pierre Guillot rose nurseries.
In 1994, she appeared in Pret-a-porter, the film by Robert Altman, and sang a duet with Malcolm McLaren on his “Paris” album. After having received three national awards, Rykiel still has not finished shaking up the fashion world. She continues to propose collections that mix fantasy with femininity, with a tasteful touch of provocation, seducing generations of young women avid for something fresh and mischievous in the heart of fashion.
Category : Sonia Rykiel Brand