Encounter: Renaud Cambuzat
For more than 130 years, Chantelle has been serving women with her know-how and the perfection of her cuts and materials. Le Bon Marché met Renaud Cambuzat, Director of Creation and Image who reveals his vision of lingerie and women. Modernity, contrasts, creativity, comfort and reinterpretation of seduction, this transversal approach has allowed this collection to bring a rich, complex and open vision to the world.
You’ve been a fashion photographer and were recently appointed Chief Creative Officer at Chantelle. How did your career unfold?
After my studies, I started working in the film industry. In 2013, my wife and I left our respective positions to devote ourselves to our artistic interests, which centred around photography and painting. We worked on various projects in Paris, Asia and in Iceland, where we spent a year as part of an artist-in-residence scheme. In 2017, I met with the Chantelle company, attracted by their strategy and a line of business promising exciting challenges. I then joined the company to work on establishing an innovative new retail concept (with the new company name, CL) in addition to repositioning its existing brands (Chantelle, Passionata, Chantal Thomass, Femilet, etc.).
Tell us about your vision for Chantelle lingerie...
It all boils down to design, simplicity and creativity. Wanting to fine-tune designs and details, provide direction, be relevant and in tune with the modern world, both in terms of our products and messages. Quality and innovation are central to our vision, not to mention comfort. That’s what inspired the SoftStretch range; invisible, stretchy and revolutionary in their unrivalled comfort, the products have been a resounding success.
Quality and innovation are central to our vision, not to mention comfort.
How do you intend on blending this vision with Chantelle’s legacy?
Heritage is a key aspect that we want to retain and a strength that characterises our company. Diligence, quality and expertise honed over the course of 140 years remain core values that allow us even now to (re)shape the course of the future. Beyond expertise and style, our collections hint at what the future holds and convey a rich and complex vision that is open to the world.
You put forward a very positive image of women. Why is it important to consider all women by way of lingerie?
The sector continues to be polarised by archetypes that have certainly evolved, but still remain. We want to promote a more authentic and assertive vision, one that is distinctly creative and able to reflect the complexity of our society and justifiably, the variety of people in it. Breaking free from restrictive beauty standards, avoiding any form of strict definition or caricatural representation of gender...
Diligence, quality and expertise honed over the course of 140 years remain core values that allow us even now to (re)shape the course of the future.
...showcasing the spirit and promise of our time through unbridled creativity, allowing everyone their own freedom of interpretation and opinion; all are convictions informing what we do and towards which we feel a duty of responsibility.
As for the body, I think there are lots of different ways of celebrating it. Lingerie being one of many. For us, it’s not just about celebrating the body, but the mind, as well as people, their personality and their story.
What lingerie trends should we look out for in 2019?
Bodywear, associated with comfort and freedom of movement, is undoubtedly the most significant trend at the moment. As in ready-to-wear, the new collections are not intended to be constrictive, but combine exquisite lightness and fluidity, comfort and sleek design. Designed like a second skin, our SoftStretch range was pioneering, the technology involved redefining the way we think about and wear underwear.
As for the body, I think there are lots of different ways of celebrating it. Lingerie being one of many.