Balenciaga: Shaping Fashion

WHEN you hear the name Cristóbal Balanciaga, most people can picture one of his modern, graphic shaped couture dresses. Known as the master of shape, the Spanish designer was famous for his exaggerated silhouettes, modern simplistic patterns and clever tailoring. Designers have been inspired by his work for many years with his designs still being classed as modern now, 45 years after his death.

 “His work is still so modern” Nicolas Ghesquiére

Balenciaga: Shaping Fashion at the V&A is a chance to see some of his original houte couture upclose. From his cutting patterns to his fitting techniques, it's a fascinating insight to the man behind the garment and some of his most iconic fashion designs. Upstairs in the exhibition there's a chance to see first hand how Balanciaga has inspired some of the most successful designers of today including the likes of Paco Rabane, Oscar de la Renta, Nicolas Ghesquiére, Hulbert De Givenchy, Issey Miyake and Gareth Pugh to name a few. Divided into sections to represent each of his particular design traits, it really gives you an idea of how he has contributed to shaping the future of fashion.

“He laid the foudations of modernity… entirely” Emanuel Ungara

Balanciaga was clearly a very influential designer and the impact he had on the fashion world has been phenomenal. I love how so many great designers have been inspired by his work. Not only have I gained a better understanding of his design style, technical abilities and creative process, I now find myself recognising particular Balenciaga design characteristics in todays fashion that he may of inspired. L

Left: Balanciaga dress, Right: Sybilla dress inspired by Balanciaga

Left: Balanciaga dress, Right: Sybilla dress inspired by Balanciaga

Balanciaga: Shaping Fashion is on at the V&A until February next year. For further information and tickets visit the V&A website.