Behind the collection: Victor Weinsanto

vor 3 Monaten

Parisian based designer Victor Weinsanto presented last season his first ever collection during fashion week. I immediately got very excited watching his show: the clothes, the music, the models… the scene made me feel as if I were in a cabaret.

I wanted to know more about this unusual FUN approach to fashion. I reached out, and he graciously agreed to give us some more details about his work, as well as an exclusive view of his Connes-sur-mer presentation.

 

 

 

Using no more than 10 words, how would you describe your style?

I would describe my style as retro futuristic.

Can you tell us about your background? How did you adapt this training, which is very focused on couture in the world of ready-to-wear?

Throughout my youth, I used to be a ballet dancer, practicing in different schools such as John Cranko’s one in Stuttgart. After years of studying ballet, I realized that I wanted to be a fashion designer. I’ve always been inspired by Couture and renowned designers. Whilst learning fashion at the Atelier Chardon Savard School in Paris, I discovered the joy of having fun with clothes without only having to think about the commercial part.
That was followed by my experience at Jean Paul Gautier which confirmed that you can create without any limits. Couture still is an art where you can express yourself freely; that’s why design is at the centre of my brand.

Among your main inspirations, we find the world of entertainment and Cabaret. Can you give newcomers to Cabaret a brief description of what the lifestyle is like?

I feel blessed to know so many amazing artists and showgirls that inspire me everyday. You have to be intransigent with yourself to make it happen; it’s a lot of work and sacrifices.
That being said, you are surrounded by so many new people every day and learn so much from from them – it is truly amazing. It is a lot of work indeed, but lots of fun too.

As a local cool guy, what is the best address to soak up this showgirl universe in Paris?

The go-to place to see outrageous shows in Paris, was the Manko Cabaret. Unfortunately it shut down a year ago – it still opens during PFW and for private events.If you wanted to find me, that’s where I was most nights; I absolutely loved that place!
Other than that, I’d recommend going to Madame Arthur Cabaret and the Crazy Horse – of course -.

Your first collection to present at Parisian fashion week is named Connes-sur-mer, what was the inspiration?

My first collection is all about fun and self confidence. My inspiration came from South of France – I found people over there more chilled and crazier than anywhere else. I love the fact that they’re confident about the way they look, the way they act, and that they don’t take anything too seriously!

 

 

What’s your favorite look from the collection?

If I have to pick one look, It would be the rainbow dress. I love the way it mixes second degree and women’s shapes. Be fun and beautiful at the same.

Your models come from a very large diversity of artistic fields, how did you come up with the idea for this new kind of casting? Can you give us a briefing on what kind of things these models do other than walking around in your couture?

Live entertainment and Art in general inspire me a lot, that’s why it came to me quite naturally to work with people who come from different backgrounds. I chose to have the persons I love working with, or the ones I appreciate the work. I’ve met all of them during the past few years and all come from my personal circle or are work related. All that matters to me is that everyone bring their own touch to the look and express themselves through what they were wearing. That’s why i worked with models, dancers, artists, designers, stylists, contortionists, comedians and a drag queen. After all, it’s all about the attitude and self confidence isn’t it? You can be beautilful in so many ways !

The show itself was filled with energy and reminds me a little of the runway shows from the 80s and rambunctious 90s, is that a wish on your part?

You got it, the 80s inspired me a lot for Connes-sur-Mer, as many other designers. Back then, there was that incredible energy, craziness, that je-ne-sais-quoi that you can’t find on catwalks anymore. I wanted to bring it back to life! Back then, it felt like people didn’t take things too seriously; it was filled with freedom, jubilation, ludicrousness. Designers were striving to expand boundaries in order to find a new meaning for fashion and more generally society.

Did you learn anything new during lockdown?

I think that we all learned that we could actually change our way of living for the best; we understood that we do consume way too much, and that our planet is fragile. Circling back to the fashion industry – I believe that we do need to redefine the way it works to be in sync with this global wake up call. We have to think differently… starting now.

Feathers or Leathers?

Feathers

Latex or Lace?

Both

Surrealism or Impressionism?

Surrealism

Bonus: Just between the two of us (and a few thousand others), what was working with Jean-Paul Gaultier like? Any stories or impressions to share?

To be really honest, working for Monsieur was the best experience of my life. He taught me the most important parts of our job : having fun and trusting in what we believe in. I feel grateful to have learned how the fashion industry works alongside him and his amazing team!

Interview by Marien Brandon 

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