All this month, we're tripping out with daily adventure stories. Iconic journeys, recent travels, sideways looks at out-there places and the sharpest of shots of the world’s underreported zones. Everest to Ibiza. Sahara to Big Sur. Under the sea to higher than God. Check back daily on dazeddigital.com/tripping. Right now, take a trip with Anthony Vaccarello and his muse, Anja Rubik.
Many times an established designer will pluck a young model for a muse, making a discovery that aligns with the future beauty, which, naturally, will be his definition of beauty. But in rarer cases, it’s the revered model who finds the designer. She takes her power and places it behind an artist. This is a special (and perhaps more equal) bond, currently most inspiringly exemplified by Anja Rubik and her friend Anthony Vaccarello. When Anja met Anthony, she loved his clothes, which are risky-sexy yet somehow mellifluous. His skin-to-fabric ratio leans towards revealing, and yet, it's still balanced. A big part of communicating Vaccarello's sensibility is the right woman: when Anja wore a white dress with a slit up to her hip bone to the Met Gala in 2012, she never once looked down in panic to see if a breeze in the Medieval Armour wing would betray her. She felt completely comfortable. Herein lies the symbiosis between Rubik and Vaccarello. He has a vision, and she can pull it off. Plus, they really like each other.
Dazed Digital: How did you two meet?
Anja Rubik: I think two years ago, right? We had a mutual friend who told me Anthony wanted me to do the show, and I said I'd come and see the clothes. I met him, and I saw the clothes, and I said: of course.
Anthony Vaccarello: Yeah, I was surprised!
DD: How did you feel the first time you put on one of his looks?
Anja Rubik: Oh really good. Really good. Which one was the first one?
Anthony Vaccarello: The trench coat.
Anja Rubik: Remember, we were deciding with the top or without?
Anthony Vaccarello: Yes, we said without.
Anja Rubik: I said, “I don't like the top.”
Anthony Vaccarello: It was a discussion even then. I like when she's wearing the clothes as she would wear them in real life. You have to be natural.
Anja Rubik: I really also loved going to his little place, his apartment, I remember he had this little mood board going on; it was just so refreshing in a way. But at the same time the clothes were amazing. He understands his woman very well, and that takes a lot of years to understand, so he's very mature. He's an old soul in a young body.
DD: You're blushing!
Anthony Vaccarello: It's strange to listen to that!
Anja Rubik: If I was him I would blush, too.
Anja Rubik: The clothes are sexy when you first look at them. But it's an intellectual sexy
DD: What did you guys do when you started to hang out together?
Anja Rubik: We drank, ate and gossiped. We didn't do trips and stuff. We still just meet, we talk, we have a drink, we e-mail here and there. Funny things. You know, I can say this, but Anthony, he was like a breakthrough a little bit in fashion. His first show, his second show, it was a big statement. And a lot of people got very inspired by his style. So there were a lot of things that were basically copies of his clothes out there.
Anthony Vaccarello: She always sends me mass copy pictures from the Internet.
Anja Rubik: Some are really, really bad. So we always joke around.
DD: You guys became friends as you were starting 25 [magazine], Anja. And that project is about celebrating female sexuality and I think Anthony's clothes definitely explore what sexy means.
Anja Rubik: I mean, the woman is very similar because it's an intelligent, strong woman that is also very sensual and sexy.
Anthony Vaccarello: It's more about an attitude and a mentality. It's not because of the dress, it's more about how the woman is talking and moving that brings the feeling of sexy. Like Lou Doillon and Charlotte Gainsbourg, when they wear my clothes, it's not like the first degree of sexiness.
Anja Rubik: The clothes are sexy when you first look at them. But it's an intellectual sexy.
Anthony Vaccarello: I like that.
DD: What do you admire most about Anja as your friend?
Anthony Vaccarello: I think that it's strange to say that with her here.
Anja Rubik: I'll just sit over here like La La La La La...
Anthony Vaccarello: She has that sense of style that most women don't have. She knows exactly what is good for her, what is good on her. She's very frank, and I like that. For me, when she says "I like this, I don't like that" it brings me to something better.
DD: Anja, what is the most surprising thing about Anthony?
Anja Rubik: That this is his fifth collection. Every show he has, it feels so much better every time. That's kind of shocking, how fast he grows. I like the fact that he's also very easy and nice, you can talk to him about everything. I think some people in this industry, maybe they have insecurities, they try to hide behind this kind of mask of being someone. And Anthony really is who he is. It's not like he's going to tell you something and walk behind the door and say something different. He's not pretending.
DD: Can you guys tell me about your best trip?
Anja Rubik: On mushrooms. No I'm just joking. No, no no.
Anthony Vaccarello: I need more trips.
Anja Rubik: I have a house in Majorca that I'm renovating. I don't want to tell people though, I don't want it to become popular, it's such a special place. But when the house is ready, he's invited.
Anthony Vaccarello: I would love to.
DD: Have you guys taken trips together at all?
Anthony Vaccarello: No...just working.
Anja Rubik: Trips to the studio.
DD: Anthony, if you could hold your show anywhere in the world - assuming it would be easy and all finances aside - where would you have it?
Anthony Vaccarello: Los Angeles. I've never been there, so I am obsessed with the idea of LA. I don't know why, I have some image in my head.
Anja Rubik: It's Bianca Jagger that is in your head.
Anthony Vaccarello: Yeah! Everything white, very pure, just the blue sky. Maybe I will be disappointed, but LA would be a good spot for a show.
Anja Rubik: You should do an all-white collection for LA.
Anthony Vaccarello: Yeah, that would be nice. But I'm happy with Paris.
DD: When's the last time Anja made you laugh?
Anthony Vaccarello: When she sent me a funny picture of a look that someone was wearing. It was a reinterpretation of a look of mine that she had worn, in another format.
Anja Rubik: It was a celebrity that took it to another level, trying to be his look. Not very successfully; it was really, really funny.
DD: Well, there's really a fine line. You're close to a line and if you cross it, it can be so wrong. That tension is what makes your clothes so amazing to look at.
Anja Rubik: Yes, his clothes are all a perfect balance. You have that slit and that metal piece. If you go a little bit off, it can be bad.
Anthony Vaccarello: I like to play with that boundary.
DD: How did you feel when Anja told you she was going to wear your dress to the Met ball - the first time and then again this year?
Anthony Vaccarello: I was so happy! Because it was my first red carpet! I was really inspired by Sharon Stone, and Anja was perfect for Sharon Stone. But we didn't plan the impact of that dress. Because when we did it, we were like ok it's a slit just like the collection, but in white.
Anja Rubik: I remember it being that we went to a restaurant and I asked, "Will you dress me?" Because I was going with Eddie [Borgo] and I had a choice of what dress to wear. I didn't want to wear black, so he said, "What about white?" And it just went on.
Anthony Vaccarello: The restaurant was this place Ferdi. Amazing burger place.
Anja Rubik: I'm vegetarian now so now we can't go there. Or, maybe a vegetarian burger! Do they have one?
Anthony Vaccarello: Yeah, it's good. It's very good.