The steps for mak­ing a cou­ture piece.


1 Karl Lager­feld sketches each out­fit and ex­plains it to Douchez. “Karl’s sketches are very de­tailed, so I un­der­stand ev­ery­thing at first sight,” she says. “It’s very ex­cit­ing to start a new piece.”

2 A pat­tern is cut, and a toile is made, with Douchez in charge of the first pins in the toile. For sym­me­try, she makes only the right-hand side, so that it can be dou­bled. “It is my job to do the right-hand side of the pat­tern.”

3 The first fit­ting is when specifics about vol­ume are de­cided. “Karl knows ex­actly what he wants. He has this idea in his mind, and I re­ally need to lis­ten to Karl’s words, be­cause it helps build it in my head. Th­ese oral ex­pla­na­tions are very use­ful to me.” It is also when the fab­ric and em­broi­dery de­tails are de­cided. “Karl might say: ‘No, it shouldn’t be pleated: it needs a lit­tle more vol­ume here.’ This is de­cided at the first fit­ting,” says Douchez.

4 “Af­ter the first fit­ting, the race starts!” says Douchez. “My team have to send the place­ment of the em­broi­dery draw­ings to the em­broi­dery ate­liers – from there, ev­ery­thing starts.”

5 Ahead of the show, Lager­feld styles the out­fits, de­cid­ing which ac­ces­sories go with which look. “He styles through the night af­ter ev­ery­thing has been made. It’s the fin­ish­ing touch!”

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