Mouna Ayoub to Auction Personal Wardrobe for Charity

 Photo credit: Couturenotebook

Photo credit: Couturenotebook

Mouna Ayoub will be auctioning around 3,000 items from her wonderful personal closet to raise funds for her philanthropic endeavors. The items, separated in 2,000 lots, were acquired between 1985 and 2011 and contain just a few of the haute couture gowns she has owned, but nevertheless are a treasure trove for fashionistas looking to acquire branded goods, in particular those by Chanel, many of which Ayoub never actually wore. The sale, with an overall value of 400,000 to 600,000 euros, will be held by French auction houseMaison Cornette de Saint Cyr in Paris between January 30 and Feb 2 — right after Paris Couture Week — with a public viewing taking place January 24‑29. Lots include shoes, handbags, furs, cocktail dresses, and a few evening dresses, with estimates from as low as 40 euros rising to 30,000 euros.

 Photo credit: Couturenotebook

Photo credit: Couturenotebook

Ayoub plans to donate 100,000 euros from the procees to the Musée des Arts Décoratifs de Paris to finance the upcoming exhibition on buttons, opening February 10, as well as another 100,000 euros to the Cinéfondation which supports young talent in the French movie industry.

 Photo credit: Couturenotebook

Photo credit: Couturenotebook

Amongst the items on sale is an outfit by Gianni Versace, circa 1991, that had the faces of James Dean and Marylyn Monroe emblazoned like an Andy Warhol painting. The piece comprises a jacket and short skirt, leggings, shoes, and a cute evening bag, and Ayoub explains she never got to wear it because her former husband, the Saudi billionaire Nasser al-Rashid was opposed to such a tight-fitting outfit. “I’ve always loved these two stars from the 1950s (Dean and Monroe). I had the outfit on a mannequin in my house so I could look at it like one looks at a painting,” she recalled in a press preview, adding that she had over 300 mannequins in a room that she would regularly dress as “dolls” with all the clothes she was buying but didn’t have the opportunity to wear.

 Photo credit: Couturenotebook

Photo credit: Couturenotebook

The auction is heavily weighted toward Chanel (about 500 pieces), for whom Ayoub has a strong preference. “I love everything that is beautiful. Karl Lagerfeld is like a fountain. … I think Chanel’s silhouette fits mine the best, and Chanel also has the best aftersales service, which is very important for me,” she said, adding that Christian Dior was also one of her all-time favorites, “I recently bought three creations from Raf Simons’ last couture collection for Dior, I thought that collection was particularly successful,” she said.

 Photo credit: Couturenotebook

Photo credit: Couturenotebook

The auction includes several vintage pieces by John Galliano, which Ayoub started to collect as soon as he started his career. Asked about his recent collection for Maison Margiela, Ayoub said she hadn’t seen it up close but was slightly “perplexed” by the design. “I didn’t recognize Galliano in it, except in the coats,” she mused.

Ayoub admitted it was not easy to sell the pieces: “It’s really not a question of selling what I don’t like anymore. On the contrary, I am really selling some of the best pieces so that others can enjoy them and I can raise the maximum of funds.”

 Photo credit: Couturenotebook

Photo credit: Couturenotebook

Hubert Felbacq who is in charge of organizing the auction, said the sale was an opportunity to buy a piece of fashion history, with the trends of the nineties well-represented along with high fashion of the 2000s illustrated in Dolce & Gabbana and Roberto Cavalli pieces with floral and feline prints, as well as leather and fur items.

There is an outfit for every moment, Chanel or Galliano glamour in the evening and casualwear during the day with Tom Ford’s “Madonna” bomber jacket for Gucci or leather biker pants.  The clothes are sized 36 to 40 (FR size) while the shoes are from 39 to 41 (FR). Amongst the most collectable handbags are a Picnic Kelly handbag created by Jean Paul Gaultier for Hermes, which is no longer produced, along with seven crocodile Birkin bags and two limited edition patchwork Chanel handbags

Though Ayoub has previously auctioned some of her couture pieces at Christies she retains about 1,200 couture outfits and continues to regularly buy new pieces, most recently from Dior and Chanel. She said she was looking forward to attending the upcoming Couture Week in Paris, starting January 26, in particular the presentations by younger designers, like Alexis Mabille and Stephane Rolland. Amongst the young fashion designers she also praised was Maxime Simoens, who recently parted from LVMH, “Unfortunately, he creates very short dresses, and at my age, I can’t show so much leg,” she quipped, “I’m going to ask him whether he can adapt from his creations for me.”

As first published on BlouinArtinfo.com