Retrospective & History of Thierry Mugler (1970s - 1990s)

1- pic-Thierry Mugler 1979


Thierry Mugler was born on 21 December 1948 in Strasbourg, France. He is a French author, fashion designer, photographer.

He made his first outfit for a girl friend at the age of 14. He joined a ballet company, the Opera du Rhin, as a dancer. Then he moved to Paris at 19 and studied at the Ecole Arts Decoratifs, which developed his knowledge of design. In 1968 he started working as a window dresser in a Parisian store "Gudule", while simultaneously freelancing for couturiers in Paris, Milan and London.


Ad 1986

He showed his first collection for women called "Café de Paris". Azzedine Alaia joined him and helped to design his creations, until the late 70's. In 1972 the design firm "Moonlighting" employed him as a designer for their Italian ready-to-wear. In 1973 Mugler started designing under his own label in partnership with Alain Cardeuc. In 1976 Mugler showed a collection of Atric gold gathered boots. The "Punk" look was in, so Mugler applied this street look to his collection for 1977.

2 -pic-Thierry Mugler  Too funky video shoot may 1992

George Michael`s iconic "Too funky" Video 1992

In 1979 he launched his line for men. During the 80's, Thierry Mugler was part of a trend. Along with Montana and Alaia, Mugler depicted women as wicked Hollywood murderers, bondage retailers of illicit sex, or Mae West clones.

In 1984 Mugler celebrates 10 years of the existence of his house by organizing a "Super Paying Show". This was a resounding success, 6,000 people assisted in the celebrations.

Furthermore he presented his first haute couture collection at the Hotel Ritz in July 1992.

3- pic-Thierry Mugler  for Elle AW95-96

Editorial in Elle 1995

In 1994 he launched his "scratched" line with uneven hemlines and necklines. Thierry Mugler is one of the few French designers to own their own factory, where dresses are made from prototypes perfected in the workshops. A good many of his designs are made to order, for the celebrities who make up his clientele list.

4 - pic-Thierry Mugler Haute Couture SS97a

Haute Couture S/S 1997

In 1995/96 there was the acceleration of exclusive boutique openings worldwide and a third Parisian boutique at 45, Rue du Bac, 75007 Paris, France. This is the first shop to congregate all lines and accessories designed by Thierry Mugler under the same roof.

In 1998, he was the first designer to create a virtual fashion show on the internet.

5- pic-1998


Runway Highlights

runway1-Thierry Mugler fall winter 1984-85

F/W 1984/85

His style is instantly recognizable: structured elegance, accentuated shoulders. Mugler went on from this point to create a very identifiable style. He designed a new feminine silhouette where shapes and curves are accentuated by the strictness of the cut. "The prophet of Futurism", as he has been referred to, Thierry Mugler is an instinctive designer who never looks for inspiration.

runway2-thierry mugler fall winter 1984-85a

F/W 1984/85

According to Thierry Mugler, "intellect is the servant of the spirit." He strongly feels that his clothing is modernistic and not futuristic. Clothes of today should have nothing to do with the past. They should create elegance with simple form and structure and add defined shape to the body, volume, form and simplicity. When one has found a method of self-expression, one evolves with it. His clothing attracts a woman of strength and élan.

runway4-Thierry Mugler AW95-96c

F/W 1995/96

Mugler usually designs 2-piece outfits with a jacket feature, full sleeves, masculine cuts, emphasizing the waist and hips to create a perfect body. He often uses solid colours as a sculptor would.

runway5-Thierry Mugler AW95-96a

F/W 1995/96

He often uses pointed angles on collars, hems, sleeves, waist and hips. He does use a lot of prints but at times uses patches of leather and few accessories and headgear.

runway6-Thierry Mugler Haute Couture SS97b

Haute Couture S/S 1997

His favourite fabrics are Jersey, vinyl, Lycra, Gingham and Leather.

runway7-couture-ss1997 runway7a-couture-fw97

S/S 1997 / F/W 1997/98

Sources: 1 2

What is your favourite aspect of Thierry Mugler`s design? Would you like to see more Futurism and Fantasy in fashion again?