The Fashion World Mourns Azzedine Alaïa

The beloved and iconic couturier has reportedly passed away in Paris.

By: Laurel Pantin

WWD is reporting that adored Tunisian couturier, Azzedine Alaïa, has passed away in Paris. The news was confirmed by his friend and 10 Corso Como founder Carla Sozzani.

Alaïa’s signature body-conscious designs dominated the ultra-glamorous ’80s fashion scene, but despite being a large-scale influence on pop culture (you might have heard that he was “like, a totally important designer,” in Clueless) he was fiercely guarded in his privacy, and insisted on working at his own pace, eschewing the relentless modern fashion calendar. 

He was adored by supermodels like Naomi Campbell and Carla Bruni, and also by fellow designers. Nicholas Ghesquière and Alber Elbaz both admired him, according to WWD.

Like so much sad news, we first heard of his passing via touching tributes on Instagram. Here is what some of his friends are saying.


“My dear ALAIA.... you will live on forever. rip.” —Rihanna

Photo: Courtesy of Instagram/@badgalriri

“Ciao Azzedine. Allegra and I will miss you forever!” —Donatella Versace

Photo: Courtesy of Instagram/@Donatella_Versace

“Today we say goodbye to a legend. Thank you, #AzzedineAlaïa, for allowing us to see the beauty of the world through your eyes.” —CR Fashion Book

Photo: Courtesy of Instagram/@CRFashionBook

“#RIP Azzedine Alaia” —Peter Phillips

Photo: Courtesy of Instagram/@PeterPhillipsMakeup

“Shocked and speechless…No words to describe the loss of a true genius, one of the greatest of our time…. Azzedine, you will be forever missed. WE LOVE YOU #LovebringsLove #TrueGenius #FashionHero #ARareGem #InspirationToAll #alberelbaz #alberandamigos @azzedinealaiaofficial” —Alber Elbaz

Photo: Courtesy of  Instagram/@AlberElbaz8

“@azzedinealaiaofficial, the iconoclastic couturier, has died in Paris at the age of 77. When other designers were asked about their icon, the answer more often than not was the French-Tunisian King of Cling. Tap the link in our bio for more on Alaïa’s life and love of design. Photographed by @ArthurElgort, Vogue, February 1986.” —Vogue magazine

Photo: Courtesy of Instagram/@voguemagazine

“Today the world has lost a true Icon and Legend!!!!! sad i havent ever had the chance to meet you but i love you for everything you’ve brought to the WORLD not only Fashion rest in peace” —Imaan Hammam

Photo: Courtesy of Instagram/@ImaanHammam

“When I worked at W, we called in Azzedine Alaia for special shoots. The entire process was different for requests because it was “Alaïa”. Often we would follow up and there was no reply and a box would appear at our office with the most amazing pieces. We requested pieces for @edward_enninful to shoot on Oprah Winfrey for the Best Performances portfolio shot by Juergen Teller. I never met him in person but I saw the magic of his clothes - never trendy, impeccable, beautiful. #restinpeace #azzedinealaia” —Karla Martinez De Salas

Photo: Courtesy of  Instagram/@KarlaMartinezDeSalas

“#RIP #azzedinealaia The one and only , the truest talent and the funniest , sweetest most generous man! We will never forget the dinners in the kitchen , the dogs to dance with, the tours of the Studio and the magnificent house and the cheeky pranks ( like wrapping his assistant in gaffer tape, or biting someone’s leg under the table ) and the most timeless ultra femme designs that will ever exist. Proud to have known you dear #azzedine Kisses iv” —Inez & Vinoodh

Photo: Courtesy of Instagram/@InezandVinoodh