Have you ever wondered what it feels like to learn how to walk in the shoes of a Maestro? Discover how in 1986, one of the fashion world's most significant Masters of Couture, Monsieur Hubert de Givenchy, inspired and transformed the ambition of a young student Lloyd Klein. The impact was so profound that his lifelong desire to become an architect was put aside by attending and becoming inspired by, a single fashion show. This blog post tells the story of how he would learn to walk in the Maestro's shoes.
Our story begins in Paris, France, early in January 1986. Lloyd Klein was a few weeks away from celebrating his 19th birthday. Little did he know that his birthday would be blessed with an invitation that would change his life forever. Lloyd had never approached life as a dress rehearsal. For as long as anyone could remember, when he was asked what he wanted to be when he grew up, his answer was always the same. Without a hint of hesitation, he would reply, "I am in the process of becoming a world famous architect." Neither age, diploma, nor experience was what defined his sense of self. He seemed to be born with a sense of self confidence that characterized his early childhood. His decisiveness and knowing exactly what he wanted came naturally for him. He believed that everything was possible, and his strength of resolve left no room for doubt in his mind, nor in anyone else's for that matter. So it was no surprise that he enrolled as a student with the École des Arts Décoratifs and began a serious and formal study of architecture. He was in the second year of the program. He loved the program and the curriculum and found it fascinating,. However, something was missing.
One evening, as he returned to his flat in the Marais, he was feeling overwhelmed by the amount of school assignments now on his agenda. It was a few weeks before his birthday. Lloyd wanted to do anything but write the papers and read the volumes that he began to resent as each assignment seemed to address things that became less and less relevant for him. As he arrived to his place, he noticed a note tacked on his door. It was neatly handwritten and left for him by a friend of his family friend. She was a a fashion model, who'd recently become close to Lloyd, as a confidante and worldly mentor partially because she was 4 years his senior but mostly because of her work as a fashion model. He loved their long talks and time spent together and enjoyed hearing about how much she loved her job. He was intrigued by the stories she shared with him and he looked forward to her visits. His curiosity about being a part of the world of fashion increased with each outrageous tale. He had never personally been to a fashion show and was hoping he'd have the chance to see her in action someday and find out if his curiosity was worthwhile. Paris Couture Fashion Week was already underway and that meant that the collections being shown would be the topic du jour for the rest of the week. It was the place to be seen and the place to all of Paris seemed