The reshuffle in the fashion world continues, and after news of Alessandro Michele’s departure from Gucci and the closure of Raf Simmons’ eponymous brand over the past few weeks, we finally have news that promises a new era. Ludovic de Saint-Sernin, known for his provocative eponymous label, has been appointed creative director of Ann Demeulemeester and will show his first collection for the brand in March 2023 at Paris Fashion Week.

Like Demeulemeester herself, de Saint-Sernin was born in Belgium. The designer grew up in Paris and graduated from École Supérieure des Arts Appliqués Duperré. He worked at various French fashion houses, including Balmain, before launching his own eponymous brand in 2017. De Saint-Sernin has emphasised sexuality and freedom of expression in his collections, sending models of all genders onto the catwalk in sheer tops, leather skirts and tight metallic mesh pieces. Over the past five years De Saint-Sernin has established himself as a designer to watch, winning fans including Dua Lipa, Troy Sivan and Kim Kardashian.

Demeulemeester is known for his gothic style and also often makes a mockery of gendered clothing. De Saint-Sernin is likely to continue her genderless design at Demeulemeester and bring a bit more leather to the brand, which often covers its models with yards of draped black fabric.

Demeulemeester herself officially stepped away from the brand about a decade ago, but has since continued to be involved in its less formal way. Claudio Anonioli acquired Ann Demeulemeester in 2020 and then-creative director Sébastien Meunier stepped down. Since then, collections have been created by an unnamed in-house design team.

Photo: Jean-Baptiste Mondino