“My grandmother used to tell me incredible stories about corsets," Jean Paul Gaultier tells i-D. "Like how they used to drink vinegar to provoke stomach contractions and then pull the laces at precisely that moment as tight as they could. Those tales were edifying, but I was not the least bit interested in the garment’s orthopedic function! For me, the corset evoked something extraordinary, fascinating and mysterious. For my first collection, I worked with a professional corset maker, who took a month and a half to make all my designs. Women had long since stopped wearing these old-fashioned undergarments, but when I started designing, young women had begun to reassert their femininity. They were reinventing the idea of the female sex object, who became strong and free enough to play with the rules.” Breathe in and celebrate five of Jean Paul Gaultier’s most gasp-inducing corset designs!
The magic corset titillated on the Jean Paul Gaultier catwalk in autumn/winter 84. It was bold and brash and a revert back to femininity that was unexpected. It was a warped and succulent embrace of female assets - hues of soft blues and blazing orange manifested in a luxurious velvet. Its iconicity was felt as soon as it hit the catwalk because it captured everything - the frivolity and the exaggerated excess of the 80s and most importantly, the wit of the fashion bad boy who had determined new rules in breaking the fashion mould.