Photos du dernier défilé
(Photos of the last show)
In 1989, Xuly Bët came up with a supremely whacky idea: why not create sexy, street-smart fashion clothes that were not only affordable but downright cheap? Now, that's dope. At 50 bucks a pop, Parisian glamorpusses were snapping up his slinky numbers like they were galettes off the griddle.
Xuly Bët, aka Kouyaté Lamine Badian, does recycled fashion - what the French have abbreviated into Recup'. He can take anything, flea market findings, lingerie from Tati (Paris' bargain-basement version of K-Mart), or your big sister's cast-offs and reconstruct something completely different and fabulous out of them. Take the pantyhose dress, for example: a partially transparent dress of stitched together panels of black, taupe and white nylon hosiery. Who cares if you get a run in it. C'est la mode!
Kouyaté Lamine Badian was born in Bamako, Mali on December 28, 1962. After art studies in Senegal, he came to France, where he studied architecture in Strasbourg and Paris. In 1989, he set up the Xuly Bët (which means voyeur in the Wolof dialect) Funkin' Fashion Factory in the x-ray lab of an abandoned hospital turned artists' squat and started churning out recycled, urban-savvy creations which quickly caught the attention of the fashion world. French Glamour and Vogue did stories on him. Galeries Lafayette, the Bloomingdale's of France, showcased him in their young designers section and now carries him in all their stores. Neneh Cherry, Soul II Soul, INXS and countless rap artists are often spotted onstage with the signature cherry-red Xuly Bët tag hanging out of a seam. But the ultimate recognition of his big-time fashion status was the character based on him, played by Forrest Whittaker, in Robert Altman's movie "Ready-to-Wear."
Xuly Bët is a democratic force in the elitist world of French fashion who, along with other young French and "Cool Britannia" designers, has brought fashion to the street and the street to fashion. Even now, after several years of big-league glory, he has not caved in to the perfume/scarf/handbag pressures of Paris couture. His clothing is still cheap -- without being cheap.
Photos du dernier défilé (Photos of the last show)
Xuly Bët Funkin Fashion Factory
8, rue Rouget de Lisle
Tel : 01 49 42 16 92
Fax : 01 49 42 14 31
Xuly Bët Petite Boutique
Espace Jeunes Créateurs du Forum des Halles
Niveau -1, porte Rambuteau