Fashion designer Alber Elbaz buried in Israel

Alber Elbaz, the renowned fashion
designer credited with giving classic tailoring a more playful edge, was
buried in Israel on Wednesday following his weekend death in Paris aged 59
after a battle with Covid-19.

Hundreds of family members, friends and Israeli fashion industry leaders
attended the traditional Jewish funeral in Holon, the city south of Tel Aviv
where Elbaz was raised after immigrating as a child from Morocco.

In his eulogy, Elbaz’s partner Alex Koo referenced the designer’s departure
from Israel with little money to pursue his career in fashion.

Koo, a musician, said Elbaz left Israel “just with a suitcase and full of
dreams, hopes, and your raw and intuitive talent.”
Elbaz, born in Morocco as Albert, had restored the lustre to storied French
house Lanvin during his 14 years at the helm of France’s oldest couture brand,
before his shock ouster in 2015.

Hollywood stars including Cate Blanchett and Sienna Miller were devotees,
in particular of his svelte black cocktail dresses, and the house flourished
financially during his tenure.

“More than any other contemporary designer, Alber listened and didn’t
dictate to women how to dress,” Lea Peretz, a senior lecturer of fashion
design at Israel’s Shenkar College and a long-time Elbaz friend, said in her

“He didn’t try to design us, he didn’t try to change us, not to turn us
into fantasies, but to the contrary — to see the complexity and the needs
that modernity dictate to a contemporary woman’s life,” Peretz said.
Instantly recognisable with his oversize round glasses and his penchant for
bow ties, Elbaz also earned fans with an affable and ebullient demeanour that
set him apart in an industry known for prickly personalities.
Gal Uchovsky, a film producer and friend, described Elbaz as “an amazing

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“He would always give you this feeling that he’s there with you, for you,
and it was genuine, it wasn’t a show,” he said ahead of the ceremony.
“(Holon) was where he’d come, fly away from Paris and New York and
everywhere to rest,” Uchovsky said.

After beginning his career with the American designer Geoffrey Beene in New
York, Elbaz took over at Guy Laroche in 1996 before joining Yves Saint Laurent
in 1998 to design a ready-to-wear collections for the French master.
In 2001 he was hired by Lanvin.

French President Emmanuel Macron hailed Elbaz as the designer had “made
French elegance shine around the world”.(AFP)


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