05.08.2015 - Katherine Koniecki




From lush jacquard fabrics to distinct floral and Op Art prints, Dries Van Noten combines inspiration like a second instinct. Reinterpreting culture is his refined touch and there are no limitations to the combinations that seep through his influences from Flemish Primitives paintings to punk. Marrying the romantic with utmost modern, he has the inkling to combine Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” with Giuseppe Penone sculptural silhouettes, John Everett Millais’ painting of Ophelia and Ryan McGinley prints. “Luxe Bohemia” is his spell and it is easy to feel the fantastic storylines that lay the dreamscapes for Dries Van Noten’s gilded nomads.


Born in Antwerp, designer Dries van Noten slid right into the reigns of tailoring. His Grandfather incepted ready-to-wear by turning garments inside out and reworking their patterns. His father was a retail business man who ran successful high end boutiques which sold Emmanuel Ungaro, Salvatore Ferragamo and Ermenegildo Zegna. It was his family influence that led Dries to learn the ins and outs of the fashion industry and he grew a sharp sense for the business side through his travels to trade fairs and shows in Milan, Düsseldorf and Paris. At 18 he found out design was his love and after studying fashion design at the Royal Academy in Antwerp, he began to freelance for stores such as Barneys New York, Whistles London and Pauw in Amsterdam before finding the spaces to launch his own brand. 

Boutique spaces have laid a visceral ground for Dries Van Noten’s brand development. His first 1986 Antwerp boutique was a tiny shop front that made its physical print through his women’s and men’s collections that were cut with the same fabric. Showrooms and boutiques in Paris and Milan followed suit and it was through his entirely self-funded growth that led a modest but solid start for the promising talent. Meager funds turned to be a blessing in disguise and while most 90s brands were lining the glossies with ads, Dries Van Noten took the other route and chose to stay away from advertising, a philosophy which the brand still upholds. It was, in turn, one of the surest decisions that amounted to an accelerated appeal and steady expansion of standalone boutiques in Singapore, Kuwait, Qatar, Dubai, Honk Hong and Tokyo. His retail homes, just like his customers graze global corners.

Business edges sharp and aptly tuned to current culture, zeitgeist holds a relevant place in Dries Van Noten’s world. His 90s grunge collection was a defining moment of the era and he caught it in the furry. Keeping it current and designing for what he spiritedly refers to as “the new generation”, there is no predictability to his work. Prints, contrasting patterns, exquisite embellishments and textile play like jacquard shoes for his Fall 2015 collection, The designer allows elements to clash as he explores the cross links between art and culture.


His grassroots beginning saw him selling his collection out of a truck outside of London Fashion Week in 1986. Going against the grain plays a part in Dries Van Noten’s glamour and he does away with the belief that there is a distinction between high and low art akin to the way in which he combined punk safety pins with the high refinement of Dior’s 40s and 50s silhouettes. Dries Van Noten avoids the system and gives into the parallel and cross waves that infiltrate his world, never forgetting the long lost loves of rebellious romanticism among the nomadic luxury of modern day jetset.

Short Facts


Dries van Noten’s designs are feminine, strong and playfully colourful. Loyal Bohemia is fluent throughout the label’s language. He steers clear of elitism and guides a general sense of rebelliousness throughout his collection, which are deeply influenced by any cultural vein including classical Flemish paintings to punk rock.


The designer’s use of graphic floral prints and Op Art patterns take on a distinctly Dries Van Noten character. The brand does not advertise and the expansive success has been spun from the designer’s wholly self-nurtured and self-financed growth.

Designer History

1986 – Present Dries van Noten

Awards and Recognition

Dries Van Noten is awarded the prestigious CFDA Designer of the Year Award in 2008.

In 2009 he was awarded the prize for Artistry of Fashion by the Couture Council of the Museum at FIT.

He was invited to oversee the prestigious “Hyeres Festival International de Mode et de Photographie” in France in May 2010.

Who wears it?


1958 - Antwerp

Dries Van Noten is born in Antwerp into a family of tailors. 

1970 - Family Prints

Dries’ grandfather introduced the concept of ready-to-wear by turning clothing inside out and reworking the patterns. In 1970, Dries’ father opened an upscale store in Antwerp which sold collections by Zegna, Ungaro and Ferragamo.

1976 - School Days

Dries begins fashion design courses at Antwerp’s Royal Academy.

1986 - Freelance Start

Dries begins to freelance and his designs instantly makes their way into high end stores such as Barneys New York, Whistles London and Pauw in Amsterdam. He opens his first tiny boutique in Antwerp selling men’s and women’s wear.

1989 - Het Modepaleis

Dries leaves his boutique space and relocates into a department store housed by his great grandfather’s competitor and keeps the building’s original commercial name, ‘Het Modepaleis’.

1990 - Paris & Milan

Picking up fast notoriety, Dries opens his first showroom and press office in the Marais, Paris. A second showroom opening follows in Milan.

2000 - Space Expansion

Dries van Noten centralizes his company in an enormous industrial warehouse overlooking Antwerp. The new space brings together all avenues of the business: marketing, production, accounting, distribution, design and a showroom space. In 2007 a boutique is opened in Paris, and 2009 in Tokyo.

2014 - The Masters

Selfridges London creates an astounding exhibition celebrating the masters of fashion shown as a bespoke installation and fashion film for a view into each master’s world. Dries Van Noten is selected among the roster to stage a phenomenal exhibition under the title “Master of the Eclectic”.

2015 - MOMU

The Mode Museum in Antwerp honours Dries Van Noten with a special exhibition titled “Dries Van Noten Inspirations”, which broke the visiting numbers as one of the most popular exhibitions in the museum’s history.





  • Dries Van Noten SS17

  • Dries Van Noten FW16

  • Dries Van Noten SS16

  • Dries Van Noten FW15

  • Dries Van Noten SS15

More Portraits

  • Mert & Marcus Photographer Portrait

  • Alexa Chung Fashion People Portrait

  • Ulyana Sergeenko Designer Portrait

  • Veruschka Model Portrait

  • Alber Elbaz Designer Portrait

  • Brigitte Bardot Fashion People Portrait

  • Bottega Veneta Label Portrait

  • Hedi Slimane Designer Portrait

  • Alberta Ferretti Label Portrait

  • Mica Aganaraz Model Portrait

  • Gianvito Rossi Label Portrait

  • Olivia Palermo Fashion People Portrait

  • Vanessa Moody Model Portrait

  • Humberto Leon & Carol Lim Designer Portrait

  • Sarah Harris Fashion People Portrait

  • Bouchra Jarrar Designer Portrait

  • Loewe Label Portrait

  • Odette Pavlova Model Portrait

  • Céline Label Portrait

  • Alexander Wang Designer Portrait

  • Phillip Lim Portrait

  • Eva Chen Fashion People Portrait

  • Cartier Label Portrait

  • Karl Lagerfeld Designer Portrait

  • Anna dello Russo Fashion People Portrait

  • Jürgen Teller Photographer Portrait

  • Adriana Lima Model Portrait

  • Victoria Beckham Label Portrait

  • Giovanna Battaglia Fashion People Portrait

  • Mario Testino Photographer Portrait

  • Demna Gvasalia Portrait

  • Daria Werbowy Model Portrait

  • Mary Katrantzou Designer Portrait

  • Suzy Menkes Fashion People Portrait

  • Oscar de la Renta Designer Portrait

  • Naomi Campbell Model Portrait

  • Annie Leibovitz Photographer Portrait

  • J.W. Anderson Designer Portrait

  • A Century New Label Portrait

  • Lineisy Montero Model Portrait

  • Azzedine Alaïa Designer Portrait

  • Phoebe Philo Designer Portrait

  • Anna Wintour Fashion People Portrait

  • Alexandra Elizabeth Ljadov Model Portrait

  • Stella McCartney Label Portrait

  • Kendall Jenner Model Portrait

  • Patrick Demarchelier Photographer Portrait

  • Lanvin Label Portrait

  • Rick Owens Designer Portrait

  • Ruth Bell Model Portrait

  • Raf Simons Designer Portrait

  • Caroline de Maigret Fashion People Portrait

  • Proenza Schouler Label Portrait

  • Scott Schuman Photographer Portrait

  • Joan Smalls Model Portrait

  • Alessandro Michele Designer Portrait

  • Chanel Label Portrait

  • Elena Perminova Model Portrait

  • Twiggy Model Portrait

  • Louis Vuitton Label Portrait

  • Jamie Bochert Model Portrait

  • Alexander Mcqueen Designer Portrait

  • Rihanna Fashion People Portrait

  • Olivier Rousteing Designer Portrait

  • Hanne Gaby Odiele Model Portrait

  • Yohji Yamamoto Label Portrait

  • Gareth Pugh Label Portrait

  • Anna Piaggi Fashion People Portrait

  • Comme des Garçons Label Portrait

  • Tilda Swinton Fashion People Portrait

  • Jil Sander Label Portrait

  • Steven Meisel Photographer Portrait

  • Linda Evangelista Model Portrait

  • Claudia Schiffer Portrait

  • Lady Amanda Harlech Fashion People Portrait

  • Georgia May Jagger Model Portrait

  • Saint Laurent Label Portrait

  • Gigi Hadid Model Portrait

  • The Row Label Portrait

  • Eres Label Portrait

  • Helmut Newton Photographer Portrait

  • Yves Saint Laurent Designer Portrait

  • Kate Moss Model Portrait

  • Anthony Vaccarello Label Portrait

  • Francois-Henri Pinault Fashion People Portrait

  • Inès de la Fressange Fashion People Portrait

  • Acne Studios Label Portrait

  • Miroslava Duma Fashion People Portrait

  • Ellen von Unwerth Photographer Portrait

  • Jeremy Scott Designer Portrait

  • Alexander McQueen Label Portrait

  • Carine Roitfeld Portrait

  • Diana Vreeland Fashion People Portrait

  • Inez & Vinoodh Photographer Portrait

  • Anna Ewers Portrait

  • Haider Ackermann Label Portrait

  • Cara Delevigne Portrait

  • Nicolas Ghesquiere Designer Portrait

  • Miranda Kerr Portrait

  • Dolce & Gabbana Label Portrait

  • Hermès Label Portrait

  • Balenciaga Label Portrait

  • Marc Jacobs Designer Portrait

  • Valentino Label Portrait

  • Moschino Label Portrait

  • Marni Label Portrait

  • Kenzo Label Portrait

  • Isabel Marant Label Portrait

  • Marc Jacobs Label Portrait

  • Gucci Label Portrait

  • Christian Dior Label Portrait

  • Balmain Label Portrait

  • Chloe Label Portrait


  • Stepping Down News

  • Instant Throwback Trend

  • Chanel SS17

  • Hermes SS17

  • Acne Studios SS17

  • Christian Dior SS17

  • Loewe SS17

  • Rick Owens SS17

  • Balmain SS17

  • Dries Van Noten SS17

Related links


Take away