Paco Rabanne: 9 interesting facts about the Spanish designer

November 10, 2023, 5.45pm |
Reading time: 5 minutes

H&M’s collaboration with renowned designers and brands has become a tradition. Karl Lagerfeld started in 2004, followed by brands such as Versace, Comme des Garçons, Maison Margiela and Balmain. Brand new to the select group: Rabanne. STYLEBOOK brings you 9 interesting facts about the late Spanish designer.

Does Paco Rabanne tell you anything in particular about the perfume in the shape of gold bars and/or diamonds? But then you missed a lot!

Because Paco was dropped from the name

The name change marked a pivotal moment for the fashion house, which is also launching its first makeup collection. One can only speculate whether Paco Rabanne’s death last February is connected to this. When he founded the fashion house in 1966, Paco Rabanne had already taken creative liberties with his name. Originally born Francisco Rabaneda y Cuervo, this name wasn’t exactly easy to pronounce.

As for the new Rabanne logo, they tried to recall Rabanne’s avant-garde heritage and focus on the first perfume that the designer launched in 1969. The new logo font is inspired by that of the “Calandre” fragrance. The tiny shape of the logo is meant to represent a “disruptive approach that breaks the rules,” as the official statement states. This is clear: the name says it all.

The Spaniard spent almost every day in his study until shortly before his death Photo: Getty Images

Paco Rabanne played a key role in shaping the fashion of the 1960s

Paco Rabanne, an avant-garde designer, gained worldwide attention in 1966 with his innovative collection known as “12 Unwearable Dresses in Contemporary Materials.” Here he used for the first time materials such as aluminum and chains, which were previously unconventional in the fashion industry. This marked the beginning of his career as an innovator in the world of fashion.

The designer in his studio in 1967 Photo: Getty Images

Aluminum dress for Françoise Hardy

One of his most iconic works is undoubtedly the aluminum “Unwearing Dress”, which he created in 1967 for the actress Françoise Hardy. This metal dress became a symbol of 1960s futurist fashion and showcased Rabanne’s bold experiments with materials.

Paco Rabanne inspired the costume designer of the iconic film “Barbarella”

Jane Fonda in her iconic role as “Barbarella” Photo: Getty Images

The film “Barbarella” helped fashion designer Paco Rabanne gain instant fame. Jacques Fonteray, the costume designer, was inspired by Rabanne’s ideas, in particular Jane Fonda’s skin-tight catsuit. Rabanne herself is credited with designing Barbarella’s green dress in the final scene.

Not just a stylist, but also a perfumer

Paco Rabanne was not only a fashion designer, but also a successful perfumer. The “Calandre” fragrance, launched in 1969, is just one example of his successful forays into the world of fragrances. Paco Rabanne’s most popular and best-selling perfume is “1 Million” for men and “Lady Million” for women. These fragrances are known for their surprising and sensual aromas and have become true classics.

Paco Rabanne is a qualified architect

His interest in architecture is reflected not only in his design language, but also in his academic background. Before pursuing a career in fashion, Rabanne studied architecture in Paris.

He was a designer for Givenchy and Balenciaga

His successful start in the fashion industry began with designing jewelry for renowned designers such as Givenchy and Balenciaga before striking out on his own and founding his own clothing line.

A person with a lot of heart

Paco Rabanne has also been actively involved in charity and social causes, which makes his personality and work in the fashion world even more diverse.

Collection with H&M

The time has come on Thursday 9 November: the latest H&M collection with Rabanne has been launched. Under the creative direction of Julien Dossena, responsible for the collections since 2014, the characteristic codes of the brand are also found at the Swedish fashion company. An example of this is a skirt made of coin-sized gold sequins, purple glitter pants, or clothing made of wire mesh.

The H&M collection pays homage to Rabanne’s iconic metal dresses Photo: H&M

When questioned by STYLEBOOK, H&M explained the background as follows: “We are very happy to work with Rabanne to give our customers the opportunity to own a piece of fashion history – such as the iconic two-piece suits and dresses made of wire mesh , maxi skirts with ruffles or retro jumpsuits and t-shirts designed especially for lounging in. Enthusiastic about the idea of ​​a lively and optimistic lifestyle, creative director Julien Dossena combined archival wire mesh and sequins to mirror with refined tailoring and accessories that dominate the dance floor as inspiration for this collection. The collection combines radical design with innovative craftsmanship and follows the futuristic creations of the company’s late founder Paco Rabanne.”

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