Azzedine Alaïa Turned Down the Légion d’Honneur Medal Because He Dislikes Decorations

Photo: Scott Gries/2004 Getty Images

Azzedine Alaïa told Business of Fashion: "You know Sarkozy offered me the Légion d’honneur medal? I refused. People said I refused because I don’t like Sarkozy, but that’s ridiculous. I refused because I don’t like decorations — except on women." He thinks other designers should refuse more offers, too. "Designers working for big houses like Dior or Vuitton have no time to reflect. We can’t just squeeze the young talents out like lemons and then throw them away," he says. "It’s a shame talents are being abused for this. I really don’t understand that. I have to live as well. That’s what life is about: living. Tell me how these designers who work for the major houses can have lives? How can they raise children if they are never home?" [BoF]