Named for her nomadic lifestyle, Laurenceairline is a luxury menswear label founded by Laurence Chauvin Buthaud. Her minimalist silhouettes use rich prints and traditional African handcrafted techniques, with sustainability and ethical fashion at the helm of the label. “We need to overcome the false idea of African fashion as just a first degree ethnic or exotic stereotype.” Her S/S13 collection is inspired by Japanese stamps and Moroccan tiles, where African Bazin is twisted and unconventionally stitched to create a tailored sheen, while a long liquette shirt is inspired by a Victorian nightgown.
Buthaud also stars in the Diesel & EDUN campaign, Studio Africa, which acts as a platform for creative talents from across the continent. She was one of nine to feature in the campaign, wearing the collaborative denim collection by Diesel and EDUN, and was chosen due to her talent and commitment to her roots.
"Laurenceairline's S/S13 collection is inspired by Japanese stamps and Moroccan tiles, where African Bazin is twisted and unconventionally stitched to create a tailored sheen"
Buthaud previously lived in Paris and Switzerland and credits her upbringing for her candid attitude: “I have been bathing in different cultures for my entire life… my Swiss background gave me a straightforward approach.” The collections are produced in Abidjan, on the Ivory Coast, where Bathaud set up a sewing workshop: a creative hub that teaches pattern cutting and couture sewing to local residents. Stitched within a contrasting pocket or the precise tuck of a Cuban-style shirt is an inspiring sense of responsibility and ambition, which believes in the positive future of Africa. “it is the promise of a fair future… the rise of a new form of handcrafted African luxury.”
The Diesel Village pop-up store inn association with Diesel Africa is open now on Regent Street.
Text by Mhairi Graham