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Riccardo Tisci Took the Givenchy Job So His Mom Could Keep Her House

Six years ago, when he was 30, Riccardo Tisci became the head designer at Givenchy. Tisci's may be the buzziest name in fashion right now, as the No. 1 front-runner in the ever-increasing well of rumors about who will replace John Galliano at Christian Dior. Young and inexperienced in terms of the magnitude of the position, he took a storied house that was losing money and turned it into one of the trendiest but growing double digits by the year, according to LVMH, which owns the label. So how did Tisci get there? According to LVMH's fashion division CEO, Pierre-Yves Roussel, "It was a bet." Tisci had put on a highly buzzed-about show in Italy — where top editors watched without the comfort of chairs — but that was mostly it. He had talent, but he was a risk. Tisci, who spent a year wondering why they hired him, says he wasn't going to take the job.

“I wasn’t interested,” says Tisci now. “Not at all. I wasn’t going to say no. But the week before, my mother called me and said to me, ‘I am going to sell our house, because your sisters are struggling, they’re having children, they need the money, I will go to a retirement home.’ I heard that, and it was like a knife in my heart. I felt such a failure, that my mother had to sell the house of my father whom I don’t remember. And then I went to Paris, and they showed me a contract with all these zeros on it, and it was like help from God. I thought, ‘If I sign this, my mother will never have to worry again.’ So I signed it. And the first thing I did was pay off the house, and set aside enough for my family. It was the best present I’ve ever been able to give.”

Oh my God: love him.

A New Romantic Lead [FT]

Photo: Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images

Copyright © 2013, New York Media LLC. All Rights Reserved. The Cut® are registered trademarks of New York Media LLC.

Copyright © 2013, New York Media LLC.
All Rights Reserved.

Copyright © 2013, New York Media LLC. All Rights Reserved.


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