I first met Camille through successive postings as a press agent at Chanel, where she stayed for eight years, and later as communications director at Louis Vuitton. I knew her therefore less as a creator. Today, she is the director of accessory creation at Christian Dior.
And, I asked myself how one can move from communications to creation, but, after our conversation I understood that she had the chance to benefit from the expertise of great creators with which she also worked and that, Marc Jacobs while at Louis Vuitton had acted as her Pygmalion. He gave her the green light on the orchestration of shows as well as on the creation of Creole monograms. This, to later offer to join him at the studio, in the department of fantasy jewelry.
I loved Camille's communicative energy and her frankness; she is an instructive creator who feels things. Despite the height of her Alaïa heels, she maintains a grounded perspective and follows changes of our epoch. The heartfelt drama that was the catastrophe in Japan made her put things into perspective and this detachment with regards to fashion give her novel ideas that she will accomplish or not for the house of Dior, but that will certainly form a source of research in her studio. To be followed closely in upcoming accessory collection at Christian Dior!
What was your professional experience?
I started very young with an internship at Alaïa during my studies, after my Baccalaureate, I went to Chanel thanks to Marie-Louise de Clermont-Tonerre to collate press cutouts.
After, they offered me a position in the press department. I was full of enthusiasm. At the time, at Chanel, it was a small family: Gilles Dufour (uncle of my best childhood friends) worked there. I touched upon a number of things: I took care of shopping for the journalists, I suggested looks, I did previews for Karl and I assisted Sophie Lorthiois on runway productions. Sophie taught me a work method that consolidated my formation at Alaïa.
Then, I hear about the ready-to-wear project at Louis Vuitton that excites me to death and there I jumpstart my network, I call Naomi [Campbell], I meet Marc Jacobs stealthily and I have the job! I arrive in April 97 for a reflection period of one year prior to the first runway show in March 98. We launch the line of patent leather Monogrammed bags that work well. I was included in all that was creative: the choice of the runway rooms, the decorum, press invitations and dossiers that needed to circulate the fashion image of Vuitton among journalists (clear passport sleeves, clutches, card-holders…)
After the birth of my son, I needed some fresh air and I decided to stop communication. Marc Jacobs kept me at the studio for the production of the shows and later for the creation of jewelry, he really got me started!
- You’ve worked alongside great designers, what have you learnt from them?
They each tought me from there own field. Alaïa tought mi rigour and to love things well done. Karl tought me all about the reasoning around a brand… It was super interesting. And Marc tought me how to think merchandising and how to create a collection for a boutique. What’s more, he gave me freedom, because he is guy who is all about exchange.
- What are your inspirations to create?
Materials are very important for me, so I do researches, I see various craftsmen. I especially have creative desires according to changing times; it’s something that is felt!
- How would you describe your universe?
I think it’s important to subtract oneself from the equation, when working in a brand fashion house. I don’t create things for me, I create Dior!
- What is your way of working?
Generally, I follow cravings without having any references, but I bow to the exercise of moodboards because nowadays it’s a necessary step, especially for the marketing teams.
I also do sketches and I work a lot on Stockman for volumes, because I like doing things myself (I build and weld prototypes). I also go into factories to meet the manufacturers; I’m working on materials because I love it.
For leather goods, I work very closely with the two people who research material, then I set a mood to the stylist and we work from there.
- How is your team made up?
For the jewelry, I have a team of two stylists plus a girl in charge of researching materials and tracking orders and an assistant. For leather goods, it’s a bigger team.
- How is Dior without Galliano?
It’s all changing, so we’ll see what happens. But it is a very interesting period for the fashion house. But it’s important not to rush things in moments like these. In the mean time, there is a team of fantastic people at the studios who can ensure future shows.
- What are your shopping desires at the moment?
I am very focused on decoration because I have just moved in to my new house and i’m loving it. I’m less interested in fashion right now: there are so many major things going on in the world and I realized that I have way too many things so I’m going to sell some things.
- What are your 3 basics?
A pair of Alaïa heels, a Dior pearl necklace and a Watanabe or Tao t-shirt.
- Do you have a good shopping plan?
The Alma market, for fruit and veg from Thiebault.
- As-tu un remix mode ?
It’s always something from Azzedine! Mainly a skirt (Alaïa) that I can wear with either a t-shirt, or a jacket from Dior and a big belt.
- What is your favorite Dior material?
- Do you have a fetish accessory for the beach?
- Jewelry + bikini, what is your opinion?
I have two pieces of body jewelry that I never take off: the Soumission chain by Victoire de Castellane for Dior, and the gold belly chain that I had created for Vuitton.
- Do you have a food obsession?
Good in-season products from good farmers. Not necessarily organic products because by dint of saying that everything is organic, there is something that does not work and we will soon forget about it
- What is your mode of transportation?
My feet (even with Alaïa shoes) and my old Mini.
- What are you doing after this interview?
I have two more interviews and then I’m having lunch with a friend.
Portrait Nicolas Hidiroglou