When fashion meets dance

We all know the creative designer of Balmain, Olivier Rousteing, who’s style is always extravagant with heavily embellished designs within the fashion industry. However, He has decided to add a new kick to his career as a designer which is a collaboration with the Paris Opéra Ballet. « Renaissance », is choreographer Sébastien Bertaud’s new ballet and for that matter, he asked Rousteing to design the costumes for the entire show. From the glistening leotards to the pear jackets, the spectacle will make the dancers shine.


Ballerina’s tights

Bertaud, who previously danced for the company, wanted to add modernity to his new show. He admired how Rousteing was able to add modernity to fashion brands and therefore called on the designer to create the « Ballet of today ». Bertaud also liked the fact that the Balmain army had fierce and powerful women, such as Kendall Jenner, representing the brand, as the ballerinas in « Renaissance » are more dominant than in classic ballets. Bertaud said: « This wonderful company is, in a way, like a classical army. It’s all about this new generation, new energy. »

Sebastien Bertaud and Olivier Rousteing


The costumes designed by Rousteing are all beige, which is one of his favourite hues. The precision and artwork made on each piece make it recognizable as Balmain. The men wear jackets and tights which are decorated with sequins, pearls, and crystals. The women have similar leotards. Rousteing sais he inspired himself from the Fabergé eggs from the autumn 2012 collection.

Details of the men’s jacket

Men’s full outfit

Even though the costumes are exquisite, the dancers have to be able to dance without being bothered by them. For example, the men’s jacket came all the way to the hip, which is a problem. Male dancers wear cropped jackets which are more comfortable to dance in. Therefore Olivier Rousteing agreed to have them shortened and adjusted. Another adjustment was the weight and texture of the garments as they were very heavy with all the ornaments. Rousteing however, states that the dancers made a lot of compromises as well. It was a good team work.

Men testing the outfits

Group trying costumes

However, Olivier Rousteing isn’t the first designer to work with the Paris Opéra Ballet. He is following the footsteps of some of the most prestigious fashion houses like Chanel, Lacroix, Yves St Laurent and Pierre Balmain himself. Here are a few words from Rousteing, very honored to have had this opportunity: « I think what you feel in these clothes is that it’s really couture, which for me was important. When you have the chance to sketch for the Opéra de Paris, you know that there may be a young designer in 30 or 40 years who will be like, ‘Oh, that was Balmain!’ It’s what I feel today when I see the Christian Lacroix costumes. »

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