Why is Ludovic de Saint Sernin leaving Ann Demeulemeester?
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Ludovic de Saint Sernin to leave Ann Demeulemeester

So Ludovic de Saint Sernin is out, and it looks like 2023 is the year of exits. I did see a lot of criticism of his debut collection for Ann Demeulemeester, but while I did quite like it for what it was, I couldn’t help but notice the similarities to De Saint Sernin’s own collections. There are obviously certain styles and silhouettes that particular designers carry with them no matter where they go, but a certain amount of differentiation would be expected. Have a look and see what you think.

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Look 1

The first look is one of the most important. This one featured a feather across the model’s chest, an obvious nod to Ann Demeulemeester’s use of feathers in her previous collections.

But compare it to Ludovic de Saint Sernin’s AW2019 Menswear Look 1 and AW2020 Menswear Look 16.

Ann Demeulemeester Look 1 vs two similar looks by Ludovic de Saint Sernin

Look 14

Next up is Ann Demeulemeester AW2023 Look 14 vs Ludovic de Saint Sernin’s AW2022 Look 32 and I think this is one of the biggest resemblances.

Ann Demeulemeester 2023 Look 14 vs Ludovic de Saint Sernin AW2022 Look 32

Looks 21 & 34

Here’s a couple more halterneck dresses, this time they’re mesh though.

This particular look appeared twice in the Ann Demeulemeester AW2023 collection: Looks 21 and 34.

Ludovic de Saint Sernin also used this look in his AW2023 menswear collection (Look 30) and he had previously shown it in his SS2023 collection (Looks 36 and 37 – Look 37 shown here).

Ann Demeulemeester 2023 Looks 21 and 34 vs Ludovic de Saint Sernin AW2023 Menswear Look 30 and SS2023 Look 37

Looks 18 & 20

Next up is the deep V neckline that came down the runway in Looks 18 and 20 shown here (but also in Looks 17 and 19).

To be honest it didn’t feel very “Ann Demeulemeester” to me.

I’ve compared these looks to Ludovic de Saint Sernin’s AW2022 Look 3 and AW2019 Menswear Look 11, but see also AW2019 Menswear Look 3 and AW2022 Look 4.

Ann Demeulemeester 2023 Looks 18 and 20 vs Ludovic de Saint Sernin AW2022 Look 3 and AW2019 Menswear Look 11

Look 7

Last up is Look 7 compared to Ludovic de Saint Sernin’s AW2020 Menswear Look 2.

Ann Demeulemeester 2023 Looks 7 vs Ludovic de Saint Sernin AW2020 Menswear Look 2

With so many big changes this year, I think there’s more talk each time a new exit (or entrance) occurs. This post isn’t meant as a criticism, but more as a reflection of what could possibly have gone wrong. Personally, Ann Demeulemeester is one of the brands whose collections I always make a point of seeing, and ever since Ann herself left the label in 2013, I’ve just felt like the magic has been lost.

Certain looks from this collection seemed to be taking the brand in the right direction, but it still wasn’t strong enough over all. I wonder who will be next.

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