“Parisian fashion designer of Italian descent” (in fact, he is Pietro) Pierre Cardin started as a theater and film artist: in 1946, for example, it was Cardin who created costumes for the film “Beauty and the Beast” for Jean Cocteau. It is interesting that Christian Dior introduced the new look style in 1947, just when Pierre Cardin was his assistant, so he contributed to the birth of this legend. Three years later, Dior blessed the assistant for his own business. And many years later, Cardin also released his assistant, Jean-Paul Gaultier, on an independent voyage.
Pierre Cardin was clearly fascinated by the Russian avant-garde with its constructivist rigid and minimalist geometry: a circle, a triangle, a rectangle, a trapezoid of bright and pure colors - he patented over 500 inventions in fashion. A-line mini sundresses, colored tights, boots … Remember the collarless jackets of the young The Beatles? This is Cardin. By the way, it was he who created the first collection of menswear in 1960 - before that fashion worked for women, and men had only traditional tailors.
As for women's fashion, here, too, Pierre Cardin made a truly scandalous revolution for his time: he decided to sell his models at affordable prices in the popular department store Printemps, for which he was expelled from the High Fashion Syndicate. And now, in all department stores in the world, you can find an entire floor of designer clothes, and this does not shock anyone.
It was Pierre Cardin who laid the foundations for prêt-à-porter and licensing systems. With the latter, perhaps, even went too far: his name flaunted on perfumes, and on ties, and on chocolate, and on a yacht, and on hundreds of other products around the world.
Cardin invested huge profits in solid real estate and gradually bought up an entire block around the Elysee Palace. It was in these mansions that the boutiques of those of his colleagues who had a hand in the expulsion of Cardin from haute couture eden were once located. But not only that, he also outlived all his "worst friends" by several decades. He told me that the windows of the President of the Republic were visible from the window of his office, and they often greeted each other in the morning at breakfast. Only the presidents were different, and Pierre Cardin was unchanged.
Valentin Yudashkin, designer, who is called "Russian Pierre Cardin", founder of the eponymous fashion house
Pierre Cardin is an amazing personality, an astronaut in the field of fashion. Not only because he was inspired by the costumes of astronauts, but also because he was a pioneer: he formed factory flows, presented a collection of clothes not in a chamber hall, but in a boutique showcase, made French fashion more accessible.
I remember how I got to Paris as a boy and saw Pierre Cardin among the guests of my first show. It was very nice. After that, we talked a lot, met, discussed joint projects. I showed it in Moscow. Cardin loved our country very much: he followed the achievements of Yuri Gagarin, dressed the ballerina Maya Plisetskaya, tried to establish the production of his clothes here, and joined the board of trustees of Kosygin University. He helped the students a lot and was generally a very open and kind person. This is how I will remember him.
Tatiana Parfenova, designer, founder of the fashion house of the same name
Pierre Cardin was very talented, and this talent accompanied the mind. He was a great artist, whose aesthetics have not been approached to this day, and a great businessman who built a fortune in his own name. That's right, brilliantly commercialized what he did. He lived almost a century and was sane all the time. Outstanding, elegant, handsome, friendly. I know this firsthand. In the 1990s, he came to St. Petersburg, and we were introduced to each other. Cardin complimented me on a piece he saw on a famous lady. He said it was very beautiful. At the same time, he did not utter a phrase that many foreigners consider flattering, but which personally offends me: "Your clothes look like they were not made in Russia."
And imagine, in the whole world there were practically no people who did not know Cardin's name. They heard about him in the USSR, in China, and in India. Icebreaker. Powerful figure.
Megan Virtanen, fashion historian
“My name is better known than I am,” exclaimed Pierre Cardin, implying more than 500 patents for inventions issued in his name and 900 licenses for the Pierre Cardin brand to be used by manufacturers of goods ranging from tights to baby strollers. However, in our country the name of Cardin was inextricably linked directly with him. In the 1980s, a Soviet woman dreamed of an outfit not from Dior, but from Cardin, since they were worn by Maya Plisetskaya, who became the muse of the French couturier.
Russia held a special place in the designer's heart: Gagarin's flight inspired him to create space collections, followed by more than 30 visits to the USSR. It is not surprising that in France he was nicknamed "the red couturier" and that it was Cardin who became the first Western designer admitted to the Soviet market. In 1986, the Ministry of Light Industry signed a special contract, according to which 30 factories of the USSR began to sew "outfits from Cardin", and even from French materials. True, the cooperation was quickly curtailed, since the designer himself was extremely dissatisfied with the quality of the products.
Failure did not prevent him from holding the legendary show on Red Square in 1991, but in those years, consumers already had other designers in the price. Pierre Cardin himself retained his love for Russia to the end, continuing from time to time to create costumes for the productions of our theaters. Perhaps the "red couturier" should be called the most Russian of French designers.
Olga Mikhailovskaya, journalist, fashion columnist, columnist for Vogue, author of the Front Fashion Telegram channel
It is amazing that he lived for almost a century, and entered the history of fashion as a symbol of only one decade, the 1960s. But the most revolutionary. He became famous precisely as a futurist, but at the same time he was very practical, rational, absolutely “earthly”. Unlike his main rival André Courreges, whose futurism was ephemeral and couture in French, Cardin was a typical Italian in fashion, who knew how to make ready-made clothes. He was an excellent master of the craft, worked as the first tailor for Dior and proudly declared that the same Bar jacket from 1947 was sewn by his hands in the literal sense of the word. In fact, he became the founder of prêt-à-porter, and not only for women, but also for men, having opened Eve and Adam boutiques back in the mid-1950s.
In general, little is remembered about his contribution to men's fashion, and he, in fact, became the first to bring the idea of comfort to elegant men's clothing, thanks in part to new materials. The famous suits of The Beatles with jackets without lapels are usually attributed to Cardin, although the version that this is just a good copy looks more believable. Be that as it may, this means that the name Cardin in men's fashion at that time meant a lot. But practicality ruined him; the businessman in him defeated the artist. He extended the licensing system to everything that could, in principle, be bought or sold - from socks and cigarettes to yachts and skyscrapers, which, of course, devalued his design and remained in memory as a designer for one decade.
Towards the end of his life, Cardin tried to indulge in a little madness: he planned to build an ambitious 245-meter tower called the Palais Lumière in Venice. But then he himself abandoned this project, which the press dubbed Pharaoh. Nevertheless, until the end of his life he was in his right mind and, judging by the interviews, a firm memory. By the way, Jean-Paul Gaultier started with him, for which we are also grateful to him.
designer, founder of the menswear brand House of Leo
Pierre Cardin is a pioneer in many ways and in particular in men's fashion. He was one of the first to create a fashion line for men, long before this niche was even formed. At the start of his career, he dressed the members of The Beatles in laconic jackets and pearl-colored skinny trousers. He began to use leather and vinyl for clothes that resembled a spacesuit. Introduced into the men's wardrobe of the 1960s a tunic intercepted by a belt at the hips. He actively stylized the uniform, reworking overalls and construction helmets. He began to use a zipper instead of the usual button closure. Created a pagoda shoulder - a detail of a jacket cut that eccentrically folds upward, reminiscent of the traditional part of a Japanese roof. Special attention was paid to glasses-masks that covered half of the face - completely impractical, but just as futuristic,like all the creativity of a designer.
By the mid-1990s, Pierre Cardin had gradually lost interest in fashion design and opted to license to third-party manufacturers, and countless socks, wallets, ties and dress shirts with his name flooded the world. The question that worried the master towards the end of his life: what will become of the Pierre Carden brand in the future. He even offered to hand over the reins to anyone who can figure out what to do with him and can pay the requested amount. Alas, no worthy ideas were found, and Pierre Cardin remained an unsolved phenomenon of success, an echo of a long extinguished star.>