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A day with Edouard Vermeulen, royal couturier in Brussels

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As soon as you arrive at 158 avenue louise, you feel the elegance, sophistication and search for beauty of this belgian couture house founded by paul natan in 1938 and taken over by edouard vermeulen in 1983. 38 years since he’s set up in this hotel particulier and dressed royalty as well as loyal customers. (interview)a price that can be understood by the atelier on the first floor where we find little hands, most of whom have worked at natan for more than a decade.(interview)up to 14 workers share this handmade work in two different ateliers. edouard vermeulen chose to open a second atelier in the very chic brugmann square and envisioned it as a salon where we can circulate, see the evolution of the pieces and even come to visit by rendez-vous. (interview)the couturier has been able to adapt to the demand as well as the evolving world, using vegan leather, looking at the origin and production of materials, and supporting the know-how, for example with raffia fringes made by artisans from madagascar.the result is seen through 250 different models released each season. but for now, let’s see the new couture collection that’s being photographed in the legendary parc du cinquantenaire in brussels while the parisian boutique natan has just reopened its doors for paris haute couture week. interviews with edouard vermeulen & charlotte tshilanda kambeya:e.v : from the beginning, when i started, it was the beautiful ready-to-wear years, but i always wanted to keep this authentic side of a couture house. firstly because natan is a name that existed before me which has represented belgian couture. despite this wave of mass distribution, i wanted to stay in the field of luxury, but accessible luxury. c.t.k : i like the work i do here and especially the way we can work in this atelier, mainly where we work in a slightly old-fashioned way. all patterns are made by hand. some gradations for the small collections we do, are also handmade. i really appreciate this artisanal side. e.v : young people no longer have the same sophistication as previous generations. now we realise that they want things that are easier to wear. and so the previous generation wants to associate with the younger ones. it’s also sometimes a bit of a simplification. but i maintain that, fortunately for the beautiful circumstances, people still want to dress up, attract attention and be elegant.