Valentin Yudashkin: What the Russian couturier will be remembered for

Anton Denisov/Sputnik
Famous fashion designer Valentin Yudashkin died at the age of 59.

He was one of Russia’s most successful fashion designers. Active in the fashion world for over 35 years, he was involved in many high-profile projects — from the training suits of the Russian Olympic team to his own ‘Valentin Yudashkin House of Fashion’, with stores in Hong Kong, France and the United States. 

Fashion designer Valentin Yudashkin before the show of his new spring-summer 2019 collection at Paris Fashion Week

His first major collection shown at the Paris fashion week in 1991 had the promising name ‘Faberge’. Еach of the dresses from it can be considered a piece of art and they are now displayed in museums around the world, including the Louvre and the California Museum of Fashion.

In 1996, Yudashkin became a corresponding member of the Paris Syndicate of High Fashion, which boasted members such as Valentino Garavani and Gianni Versace.

He created his own studio in the late 1980s and called it the ‘Vali-Moda Fashion Theater’. It was immodest to give his own name to the theater back then, but he dared to. 

The Faberge collection

Yudashkin’s collections have always had artistic allure. Models were distinguished by an abundance of decor and a riot of colors, by daring shapes and femininity. Under Soviet rule, this all seemed like a fairy tale and was perceived as a spectacle.

“We were ordered to come, for example, to a workplace. And, at 9:00 a.m., we showed costumes and dresses to the working women, while they were wearing padded jackets, headscarves and caps. And they applauded so heartily. They felt about it this way: ‘I cannot wear it, I will never be able to buy it, but, at least, I had a chance to see it,’” says the designer.

Designer Valentin Yudashkin and his wife Marina after the show of his new collection during Moscow Fashion Week

Yudashkin made not only haute couture, prêt-à-porter and jeans clothing, but also underwear, designer accessories, shoes, jewelry, watches, porcelain and home furnishings.

“Today’s woman is pragmatic, conceptual and understands what she wants. My heroine is a young, sexy, athletic, active… and working woman!” This is how Yudashkin saw the modern woman of fashion. 

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