Lucas Ossendrijver Exits Lanvin: our highlights of his fourteen years of menswear design

November 17, 2018 by  
Filed under Fashion, Featured Items

After fourteen years serving as creative director for Lanvin’s menswear department Lucas Ossendrijver (1970) is exiting the label. Bruno Sialelli has been named as his potential successor for the troubled fashion house. Everything is being tried to bring back to live the century old luxury fashion label that became unprofitable for the first time in a decade in 2016 when it lost €18.3 million. In 2017, losses are said to have increased to €27 million. In 2015 Alber Elbaz left Lanvin, also after fourteen years. Lanvin has been without a womenswear designer since March this year. So two new creatives have to be named. But before we talk future plans and successors, let’s take a look at fourteen years of menswear created by the Dutch designer.

Ossendrijver graduated at Artez and started out designing at Kenzo and Dior Homme before stepping into the world of Lanvin menswear in 2006, which didn’t yet have a clear signature at that time. In fourteen years Ossendrijver managed – first together with Elbaz, later on by himself – to develop a Lanvin lifestyle/mindset for men of any age. And his Sunday morning shows always formed one of the highlights of Paris fashion week.

Clicking through his work his signature design code is present in any of his collections over the past fourteen years. Ossendrijver’s designs were about tailoring mixing in technical and activewear influences. His designs were classic (but with the right touch of modernity and surprise) and subtle, but the designer aspect of it showed in every look. And if you couldn’t see it at a first glimpse, you sure felt it after touching/feeling the fabric (he called himself a fashion whisperer). With Ossendrijver as creative director Lanvin menswear was never about hype or trend, it was about dressing natural and effortless. “My interest in fashion has more to do with clothes than with trend. I will never get bored of clothing, but I will of trends”, he said in a de Volkskrant interview in 2016.

The designer, who named the Fall/Winter 2010–2011 show as one of his favorites because he then really could feel the impact of what he sent out on the catwalk – played with proportions and asymmetry a lot. Besides the black, the white, the grey Ossendrijver used the most lovely, warm color palettes of burgundy, ocher and emerald green. His work is so consistent that if you now were to pick out the most colourful looks of any collection and put them together they’d form a perfect collection too. In any collection you could count on colourful footwear (Ossendrijver is keen on his sneakers made out of the best materials), remarkable headpieces and a quirky sense of styling. The model cast was always a surprise as well; skinny, punk-y boys (David Bowie is Ossendrijvers all time fashion inspiration) with flap ears, slightly feminine features and the most outstanding hairdos. “The models have to have enough personality to be able to wear my designs”, he told de Volkskrant.

Ossendrijver loved the pace of fashion. The opportunity to reinvent yourself every half year. In an interview when asked how he’d see himself in ten years from now Ossendrijver answered: “Gardening in a quiet spot somewhere, preferably in a sunny place, by the sea.” Let’s hope it’s not his net move yet. We’d love to see much more of his view on menswear fashion. But for now let’s look back at his most outstanding work: