By JB Swaggyera, Style Writer
You might have heard the word muse a lot in fashion shows or red carpets. Many of us don’t know what it means but don’t worry we are here to help you out. The word muse means “stimulation” or simply inspiration. The word came from Greek and Roman mythology and was used to describe the nine goddesses who were the daughters of Zeus and were best known as the symbol of art, music and literature. This word was later used to describe the person who becomes the source of inspiration for creative artist. In other words, someone who serves as an inspiration to the artist is known as muse to the artist. It is believed that muses also inspire the designers to keep on creating the master pieces and help them grow. Many designers have multiple muses, but they have one special muse which makes them what they are today.
Christian Dior was enraptured by the excessive, exaggerated beauty of Mitzah Bricard, a human panthera wrapped in pearls. In 2011, they created a new collection celebrating this legendary muse. Mitzah Bricard, Christian Dior’s glamorous muse. Paris-born Mitzah was the daughter of an English mother and an Austrian father, and developed into a French fashion icon. She instantly inspired Dior at the very early stages of his house, playing a key role in his overall design direction. “Ms. Bricard is one of those rare people whose only reason for living is elegance,” Dior once said of his muse. Mitzah was originally responsible for the Dior hat collection, and was known for transforming the ordinary into the fashionable. She had a keen love of leopard (she always wrapped a leopard scarf around her wrist), the color lilac, and avant-garde jewelry.
Yves Saint Laurent, for his part, assembled around him a formidable entourage of exotic personalities, each personifying a distinct facet of his taste.
Every fashion lover knows about Hubert de Givenchy and his muse Audrey Hepburn. She was one of the famous actresses of the 20th century and everyone loved her style and fashion. The whole world cannot forget Audrey Hepburn in the black dress she wore in the movie Breakfast at Tiffany’s which was obviously designed by her true friend and designer Hubert de Givenchy. This dress was really the most fashionable and sexiest outfit the world had ever seen. Audrey praised Givenchy in the following words, “His are the only clothes in which I am myself. He is far more than a couturier, he is a creator of personality”.
Givenchy and his muse Audrey met on the shooting of her film “Sabrina” in which he was the dress designer. Audrey instantly became Givenchy’s muse and he continued designing her dresses for the films and her appearances on the red carpet. Hence Givenchy the fashion house became famous and gained top class designer house recognition though its elegant and feminine dresses. The muse and artist relationship also helped Audrey and she became the most stylish woman of the 20th century. This relationship will never be forgotten and would always inspire other designers to find their muses as well.
Not all designers are inspired by famous and powerful women of fashion industry. Some of them are also inspired by their parents or partners. Stella McCartney was once asked about her muse and her response was shocking. She said that her parents were her muses not because they were fashionable, but they were unfashionable and had no sense of dressing. She said in an interview, “My parents were pretty uninterested in fashion; it was just was part of what they did. I think that’s why I was so visually inspired by them – because their fashion sense was not strategic or overthought”
In today’s world, a lot of fashion designers have muses who have made them famous. Following are the example of top designers and their famous muses’ examples.
Lady Gaga and Brandon Maxwell
Lady Gaga has made so much headlines in 21st century because of her fabulous dressing and sleek style and one of the reasons for her success is Brandon Maxwell. This brand is also worn by many famous and powerful women which includes Queen Rania of Jordan, Michelle Obama, Meghan Markle and Blake Lively. Brandon Maxwell established his brand by his own name in 2015 but his success story begins from 2012 when he started acting as a creative fashion director to Lady Gaga. He met Gaga when he used to work as a stylist assistant to famous designer Nicola Formichetti and he was also involved in designing the meat dress for Lady Gaga which she wore in the 2010 VMAs. Ever since then Lady Gaga grew fond of his designs and hired him as her fashion director. Both Maxwell and Gaga are friends now and they are always enjoying each other’s company. Maxwell became more famous when Gaga wore a jumpsuit to the Oscars in 2016 which is known as a half-jumpsuit and half-gown satin dress.
Gaga style is shifting to Old Hollywood glamour and Maxwell is given a lot of credits for it. The artist/muse relationship is so far going really great and Maxwell has agreed that he loves to dress strong and powerful women. He was once asked about Lady Gaga and he said, “My goal was always to dress women who were strong and powerful and really stand for something, and (Lady Gaga) embodies that.”
Ricardo Tisci and Kim Kardashian
You may hate her or love her, but you can’t deny the fact that Kim Kardashian West is a true style icon. Riccardo Tisci, the former Givenchy’s creative director, is inspired by Kim and calls her his muse. He is known for the Kim’s noticeable and admirable style shift. He has dressed her up for red carpets and one of the most famous dress was her floral dress which she wore at 2013 Met Gala when she was pregnant. Although it received mix reviews, but it was the most talked dress of 2013. He has even called Kim the Marilyn Monroe of this era and has remarked that she has a great style which other celebrities can’t even copy.
Once asked about the Kim he remarked, “Kanye and me, we did it together. She was accepted by nobody. Every designer is dying to dress her now. I didn’t care what people thought about Kim. In the beginning I met her because of my respect for Kanye, and then I liked her a lot and we became friends. I got killed because of this. But I didn’t care.”
Pierpaolo Piccioli and Adut Aketch
Valentino’s famous designer Pierpaolo Piccioli and his bond
with his muse Adut Aketch is remarkable and is the latest and best muse/artist
relationship. The Piccioli is of the view that Valentino dresses should be
represented everywhere in the world by a model who has new beauty standards.
The model is getting famous every day because of her great style, and everyone
gives credit to Piccioli. Adut Aketch is show stopper of Valentino’s shows and
she loves it.
“Adut is a very special human being. She is more than beautiful. she has the ability to glow effortlessly of her own grace and every time she is around, you can ‘feel’ her. She is real, grateful for what she has achieved, and that in itself is just a rarity, I wanted her because she embodies inclusiveness and contemporaneity.” These are the words by Piccioli for his muse.
Zuhair Murad and Jennifer Lopez
Zuhair Murad a famous Lebanese fashion designer who is known for his sexy cut-out dresses, beautiful beadwork and fitted dresses. The designer is loved by every woman but there is one woman who he likes to dress up and calls her his muse and that woman is Jennifer Lopez. He has designed so many bewitching and classy outfits for red carpets for J Lo and has also designed the sexier ones for her “Dance Again” tour.
Murad on Lopez, “We’ve become friends and she’s my muse. I love her as a person and as a woman. I love her curves and the way she walks out in a dress.”