One of the most successful members of the renowned Antwerp Six, Dries Van Noten’s intellectual aesthetic first took the international fashion scene by storm when he and other graduates of Antwerp’s Royal Academy rented a truck and set up shop at London Fashion Week in 1986.
Since then, Mr van Noten has maintained his independent spirit, and has been comfortable growing his business on his own terms, maintaining the creative integrity of his design process and aesthetic.
Van Noten is the third generation of his family to work within fashion; both his father and grandfather were tailors. In 1970 his father opened a boutique on the outskirts of Antwerp selling Emmanuel Ungaro, Salvatore Ferragamo and Ermenegildo Zegna. His father’s business took van Noten to the menswear shows in Milan, Düsseldorf and Paris, experiences that taught him about both the commercial and technical sides of the industry, and prompted his realisation that he was much more interested in design.
Van Noten has six stand alone stores, including a five-storey former department store in Antwerp. His collection is sold in over 500 wholesale doors around the world. The scale of his business is particularly impressive given that the designer does not advertise.
Dries van Noten remains not just part of the fashion dialogue, but capable of driving it. His 90s grunge inspired womenswear collection in Spring/Summer 2013 wasn’t just of the moment, it was the moment.
He won the CFDA International Designer of the Year Award in 2008.