With t-shirts costing around £1,000 from main label Balmain, I was more than eagerly awaiting the arrival of the more affordable Pierre Balmain line. However, I had reservations after Christophe Decarnin parted ways with the label. New creative director Olivier Rousteing has had no part in the design either, it’s been created by a separate design team. Hmmm. They have designed womenswear and menswear collections encompassing everything from eveningwear to jeans and tailoring, with t-shirts starting at £105 and eveningwear at £795; taking the price points from super wealthy only to wealthy only. My verdict? To be honest, I wasn’t impressed. Balmain usually blows me away with it’s super sexy, rock n roll aesthetic but this fell a little short. The likes of Miu Miu and Marc by Marc have set the bar so high for diffusion lines and this feels like a cheap imitation rather than a proper stand alone line. I’m not sure if Marc or Miuccia have much to do with their diffusion lines but it just feels like they are more finished as products and a whole collection. Mind you, this is just a snapshot so maybe it will get better. I do love the black sharply tailored jacket though.
Launching in December with the Spring 2012 collection, the diffusion line will be available in stores worldwide while Paris, Milan, Rome and Hong Kong will have stand-alone boutiques.