The death of Paco Rabanne, at the age of 88, has been announced by his former eponymous company. He was indeed the most extraordinary fashion and perfume designer. Throughout his life, Paco Rabanne was a pioneer in the fashion world with his imaginative and futuristic designs. Paco died on February 3 in Portshall, Brittany.
Rabane was a key figure in the fashion industry, and his quiet persona helped shape the industry. This blog will look at the life and career of Rabane as well as his legacy.
Early life and career
Francisco Rabaneda Cuervo, famously known as Paco Rabanne, is a Spanish fashion designer. He was born in Pasasia, Spain, on February 18, 1934. He was known as the “enfant terrible” in the 1960s. His mother was the head seamstress at Balenciaga. She and 4-year-old Paco left Spain in 1939, during the Spanish Civil War, for France. That’s when he got his new name, Paco Rabanne. And his mother opened the first Balenciaga boutique in France.
Rabanne was born in 1934 in the Basque town of Pasaia, Gipuzkoa, Spain. His father was a Republican colonel. And he was executed by Francoist troops during the Spanish Civil War. In the mid-1950s, while studying architecture at the Beaux Arts in Paris, Rabanne earned money making fashion sketches for Givenchy, Dior, and Balenciaga. He also made shoe sketches for Charles Jourdan. He was quickly recognized as a master of modern design, and his work revolutionized the fashion industry.
Career in Fashion
His first collection debuted in the 1960s when couture was made of aluminum and plastic. Beginning his career as a designer in 1965 with the debut of a collection of 12 avant-garde gowns he dubbed “the Unwearables,” he quickly became a household name. The first plastic garment was among them.
He pioneered the use of black women as fashion models and became a legendary costume designer in the film, theatrical, and ballet industries. Back then, Mylène Farmer, a singer, often wore his creations onstage. French actress Françoise Hardy was once a devout follower of Rabanne’s. In addition, Brigette Bardot, Elizabeth Taylor, and many more celebrities were drawn to the unconventional elements that have been seen in his creations.
In 1966, he launched his own fashion label. Metal, paper, and plastic were among the unusual materials he used to create his eccentric and showy creations. In Paris, everyone was talking about the outfits by Paco Rabanne created from tiny plastic tiles strung together with chains. New York’s Museum of Modern Art now displays a selection of these ground-breaking outfits.
His designs became so famous that actresses like Jane Fonda wore them. The famous outfit made its appearance in the science-fiction film “Barbarella” in 1968. His futuristic, metallic look dominated the disco era.
Career in Fragrance
After partnering with the Puig firm in 1968, he opened his perfume factory. Slowly, he gained recognition in the perfume industry too.
Calandre, his very first and arguably most popular fragrance, was released in 1969. In 1976, the company built a factory in Chartres, France, to produce perfumes. A court judgment in the 1980s canceled his men’s perfume brand’s registration in Brazil, despite significant advertising and widespread familiarity. Puig’s local distributor illegally imported perfume into Brazil; as a result, the court ruled that the firm couldn’t prove import fee payment.
Six or seven years passed before his company was again a household name in Brazil. Rabanne introduced the first XS fragrance to the market in 1994.
Awards and Achievements
The guy who introduced the space age to the runway. His distinctive and forward-thinking creations earned him recognition from a wide range of illustrious institutions. In 1990, during the Paris Spring/Summer Fashion Show, he was awarded the Golden Thimble.
Both the National Fashion Design Award and the Gold Medal for Merit in Fine Arts (2001) were bestowed upon him.
He has written two books; in 1924 he published “Has the Countdown Begun?” Through Darkness to Enlightenment. Journey, his second book, is about his search for meaning and how he used what he learned to inform his clothing lines.
He was also a believer in paranormal activities and even falsely predicted that the Russian Space Station would crash in Paris in 1999. At the age of 17, he had visions of flames being thrown at the Seine.
In 2005, his drawings were displayed in a Moscow exhibition. He claims that he has not shown his drawings to anyone but Salvador Dali since about 28 years ago.
Paco Rabanne was a world-renowned fashion designer who left an indelible mark on the fashion industry. He was known for his unique and innovative designs, which often pushed the boundaries of traditional fashion. The death of Rabbane will be an irreplaceable loss for his fashion house, but the legacy he left will be reflected in all the works that will be produced by the fashion house in the coming years.