COVID-19 claimed the life of a beloved figure in the international fashion world last month. Alber Elbaz, the Morocco-born Israeli designer who was credited with reinvigorating the Lanvin brand, died in Paris in late April, at the age of 59. Beloved by the celebrities he dressed — such as Meryl Streep, who won her 2012 Oscar in a regal gold Elbaz/Lanvin creation — Elbaz spent 14 years as fashion director of Lanvin, with his graceful designs returning the storied Paris fashion house (which has origins that date back to the 19th century) to prominence as a modern brand. In recent years he founded the new line AZ Factory, intended to offer playful, elegant clothing to women of all sizes, at prices far lower than most designer brands. “Through AZ Factory, I want to challenge our obsession with weight,” he told an interviewer for British Vogue. “I’m oversized myself and I always wore layers so no one would know where I began and ended — then I thought, ‘Why hide?’”
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