How the story began
In 1984 Fifi launched her first collection under the name Chachnil. A collection of ready-to-wear garments that brought an element of theatre and sparkle to clothing at a time when the black deconstructed style of Japanese designers were â la mode. She produced skating outfits, ruffled bloomers and cowgirl and tiger print suits worn by musicians such as Nina Hagan and Marc Almond, artists and the Parisian elite on and off the stage. It was during this time that she established a penchant for showing her collections in quintessentially Parisian venues. Venues include the second floor of the Eiffel Tower, Le Lido on the Champs Elysee and Le Crazy Horse Paris.
Lifelong friendships with fellow artists Pierre et Gilles and Ellen von Unwerth were formed during these early years. As with Ines de la Fressange, Julie Depardieu, Philip Catherine, Victoire de Castellane and Helena Noguerra whom Fifi continues to dress and work with today.
In 1995 Mademoiselle Fifi was in Los Angeles to photograph her latest collection of dresses and it was during this trip she discovered the exciting concept of ‘extroverted nudity’. From this moment she looked to and began designing lingerie, in particular lingerie so beautiful it should be seen.
‘In contrast to everyday clothes that require an acknowledgment of style, lingerie is a woman’s secret that opens the door to all kinds of fantasies’.
Fifi’s devotion to designing beautiful lingerie has seen lingerie included in all of her seasonal collections since 1996. Her debut lingerie collection included the culottes ‘Joyeuse’, ‘Minette’ & ‘Bloomer’ all now classic styles to the house of Fifi Chachnil and still regularly featured in her collections today. These culottes were presented alongside the first Fifi Chachnil corsets, stockings and night gowns and were all an instant hit in Paris, Tokyo and in the United Kingdom the boutique Agent Provocateur stocked Fifi Chachnil exclusively from 1996 through to 2008. Barney’s New York shortly followed as did stockists in 45 counties across the globe.