Marie-Christine Statz is the German-born designer behind cult French label GAUCHERE, whose elegant pieces emphasizing precision tailoring and construction articulate a language of modern minimalism. For GAUCHERE’s Spring Summer 2024 show Statz sent models down the runway accessorized in AHLEM frames she devised in partnership with Ahlem Manai-Platt: dynamic, authoritative and sublime. We recently caught up with the designer to talk about the origins of GAUCHERE, her collaboration with AHLEM and why craftsmanship is king.

Tell us about your background. How did you initially become interested in fashion?

I was raised in the ’90s between Germany and France, and I moved to New York in the buzzing energy of the 2000s. After getting my fashion degree from the Parsons School of Design, I started to work successively for Narciso Rodriguez and DVF. After seven years in New York, I moved to Paris to extend my craft and tap into the European market. Obsessed with quality and savoir-faire, I specialized in tailoring at la Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne. In 2013, I founded the label GAUCHERE. Fashion is a part of our aesthetic surrounding, I see the cloth like a construction in which the body should match our way of living.

GAUCHERE’s aesthetic has been described as progressive minimalism that emphasizes the individual. How did you cultivate this particular creative voice?

I have always been attracted to minimalism. The way you create beauty and freedom with a minimal approach—very subtle, very thoughtful. Removing instead of adding. I call it progressive because of the way we live today. I am looking for a great fit and feel in the construction of every piece

How do you balance precision and intuition in your work?

That is all about tension and harmony. I always question what makes a garment special. To me, it is the combination of feeling great and knowing you are wearing a great product.

What keeps you going or sustains you creatively? Do you have any habits or rituals that support your creative work?

What keeps me going creatively is passion. I am a lot inspired by women who surround me. It feels like a ritual in that sense.

Tell us about your collaboration with AHLEM. How did you connect? Can you tell us about the frame you wanted to create together?

We first connected through a mutual friend. It was very natural and evident. Sharing the same values and aesthetics, we had the idea of a collaborative frame fusing our DNA. We were very receptive to each other's input and willing to explore different directions. We wanted a frame that is bold but at the same time timeless and elegant.

You and Ahlem Manai-Platt share a lot of common ground—you both live in Paris, and share an interest in architecture and understatement, as well as a passion for sustainability and craftsmanship. Can you tell us a bit about how these values became important to you?

I am very inspired by architecture—definitely minimal. The Bauhaus movement, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Le Corbusier, the idea that form follows function. At the same, the “ready-for-anything" plan of Richard Neutra, which nurtures the idea of flexibility and transformation. Craftsmanship is a necessity to embody this philosophy. My obsession about quality is always the starting point of our sustainable approach. I feel we share these values with AHLEM