Cookie banner

This site uses cookies. Select "Block all non-essential cookies" to only allow cookies necessary to display content and enable core site features. Select "Accept all cookies" to also personalize your experience on the site with ads and partner content tailored to your interests, and to allow us to measure the effectiveness of our service.

To learn more, review our Cookie Policy, Privacy Notice and Terms of Use.

clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

The NYT Asks Olivier Theyskens The Question on Everyone's Mind

Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here.

Olivier Theyskens designed the gowns for Madonna's "Frozen" video (1998)

When Olivier Theyskens, one of Paris fashion's most prodigious talents, took a job designing at utilitarian-fashion company Theory, it was a surprise (to say the least). This week, Theyskens was named Theory's artistic director. Who'd have ever thought that the young man who in the late-90s dressed the then-gothy-ish Madonna in elaborate, mindbending creations would one day be directing the design of smart workwear and other staples of the New York uniform?

Eric Wilson of the NY Times asks Theyskens a hard-hitting question that, to us, really means, "How serious are you about this, really?" Theyskens' answer passes muster, with flying colors.

What happens if Chanel comes calling tomorrow?

Mr. Theyskens: This is the question that I hear for 10 years. The important thing that I believe very strongly is that there is a right thing at the right time and the right place. The ‘if’ is not something that I really consider. I am putting myself fully into the development of Theory, and I have always been like that. As a designer, I am known for more of a creativity point of view. But for Theyskens’ Theory, I was so pleased to see the orders that balanced the sharply cut jackets with the T-shirts and the jeans. In addition to creativity, simplicity has always been very important to me and in my work, so I feel the position here is right for what I want to do.

· Olivier Theyskens and Theory Q&A [NYT]