arts & culture

Current Events: Fondest Farewell, Sonia Rykiel

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15-Fondest Farewell Sonia Rykiel
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On Thursday, August 26, 2016, French designer Sonia Rykiel passed away at her home in Paris. She was 86. In 2012, the designer had revealed that she had been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease 15 years earlier.

Born in Paris in May 1930 to a Romanian father and Russian mother, Rykiel began her career in 1948 as a window dresser. Known at the Queen of Knitwear, her first foray into design was the knitting of maternity dresses for herself after marrying Sam Rykiel, the owner of a Paris boutique. Her first big break came in 1962, with the fitted, long-sleeved ‘poor boy sweater’. Shortly after, Elle magazine featured pop star Francoise Hardy wearing a Rykiel sweater on its cover in December 1963. Brigitte Bardot and Audrey Hepburn would also become fans.

The designer would become an established name on the Paris fashion scene when her first store opened in Paris’s Left Bank in 1968. In 2009, she was awarded The Order of Légion d’Honneur in recognition of her 40 years of service in the French fashion industry.

We leave you with these images of the infectious Spring 2008 Ready-to-Wear runway show in Paris.

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Above, the fiery-haired designer at the Spring 2008 Ready-to-Wear runway show in Paris, October 5, 2007

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