Maite Tanguy : fashion weaver for Haute Couture
I don’t know what you think about it, but personally, I’m really sensitive to signs (and to smells…I was talking about it HERE !) When I come to a meeting and there is a car-park place that frees up in front of the door. I tell myself that it must mean that I am where I should be that day! (Should I mention that I live in Paris and that when saying that, I evaluate my chances to see that happens in an urban jungle of 3 million people?!)
Four floors without elevator, a fresh painting smell, and a huge double door a bit away….I finally meet Maité Tanguy, smiling but a little bit tired. She is 70, just done an order and always keep weaving for the greatest parisian fashion houses. I’m stunned !
Here, no sofa no TV. The flat was transformed in a workshop. There are hundreds of coloured wire reels. And everything is perfectly well ordered!
From sewing to weaving :
From Bretagne, Maité, aged 14 at the moment, enters a sewing school. “I quickly felt that I was interested in the topic and that I would work with it one day”. Wife and mother at 19, she belongs to another century. The woman who dreamed about becoming a drawer therefore cooled down her talent and creativity to work in a retouching workshop located just in front of the mythic brand “Le Bon Marché” in Paris. “I was going there to dream!” After her second daughter’s birth, she decides to work at home and create her own clothes. But as french people use to say, chase the natural and it comes back running :
Aged 24, I already dressed the whole family ! I loved chlidren collections for their punchy colours.
As often, it’s a professional meeting which changed the path of her carreer. At 30, she touches her first loom and integrates the Gobelins national textils arts workshop. She learnt quickly, very quickly! As all passionate people… graduated, she opened her first workshop in Mouffetard’s district. At first called to help, she thereafter had to take orders more and more precise.
Christian Lacroix, Balenciaga, Christophe Josse and even Céline !
Designers from the most famous houses call her to create tissues more crazy than the others. The results are surprising!
In general, designers have a very precise idea of what they want. Once Maité has created the tissues they wanted, she can send them a little piece in their workshop. And when it’s all validated, a long work of weaving starts. Calm and patient, she does not care about long hours of work. Even when it’s about a long coat !
“I have always weaved with music. I chose a new one for each peace and it goes on until I finish the whole work.”
Crédit photo: MadameFigaro.fr
Maité also collaborated with Bouchra Jarrar (recently nominated in Lanvin) to design 11 collections of tissues.
When I see the real entertainment around this french creator, I think her loom isn’t about getting dusty !