Creative Conversations With Suzy Menkes

Suzy in Paris (photo by Elena Olay)

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Season 10

Suzy has a relaxed chat with her friend, the wildly talented polymath Jasper Conran, about his life, career and his latest project, designing the set and costumes for Frederick Ashton’s Les Rendezvous at London’s Royal Opera House.

Suzy’s guest for this episode needs no introduction: the visionary, decade-spanning and wildly successful Giorgio Armani. Suzy and Mr Armani speak in both Paris and Venice about his life and current activities.

Suzy sits down with London-based fashion designer Bella Freud, to talk about her life, career and larger-than-life family background.

Suzy travels to Paris to speak to Simone Rocha and Jean Paul Gaultier about Simone’s highly anticipated Jean Paul Gaultier couture collection.

Suzy meets Jeff and Émilie Goldblum, perhaps the most charming couple in all of Hollywood, and speaks to them about fashion, life, work, family… and la dolce vita nella bella italia!

Season 9

Suzy finds out how art direction makes the fashion and luxury universe tick, by speaking to a world specialist: art director and curator Antonio Monfreda.

Suzy speaks to the British Fashion Council’s Ambassador for Emerging Talent, Sarah Mower MBE, about her work and the exhibition celebrating 30 years of the NEWGEN programme, Rebel.

Suzy has a lively conversation with JJ Martin, the American entrepreneur and designer who has taken Italy by storm.

Suzy has a wide-ranging chat with the sultan of sequins himself, Hollywood costumier Bob Mackie.

Suzy is back for her ninth season! On the eve of his tenth anniversary at the company, Suzy speaks to her friend Stuart Vevers, Executive Creative Director of Coach New York.

Season 8

For this Coronation bonus episode, we’re bringing you a great conversation with Suzy on If Jewels Could Talk, the podcast presented by Vogue’s jewellery contributing editor Carol Woolton. They speak about Suzy’s jewel predictions for the big day, who she thinks is the best-jewelled Royal, what it truly means for an item of jewellery to “belong” to the Royal Family – and much more.

In this special epsiode, Suzy speaks to luxury creative director Brunello Cucinelli in front of a live audience, in a theatre in the village of Solomeo, Italy.

After a tour of his new flagship store in Mumbai, Suzy sits down with India’s foremost international fashion designer and retailer Sabyasachi Mukherjee to discuss his early years, his vision for the brand and his outlook for the future.

Suzy sits down with one of the world’s most successful and influential movie costume designers, the multi-Oscar winning Sandy Powell, who was presented with BAFTA’s highest honour by Cate Blanchett at the 2023 awards: the BAFTA Fellowship.

Suzy speaks to the wildly successful make-up artist, author and entrepreneur Bobbi Brown about her career, her new brand Jones Road, how TikTok has changed her world, and how her love of England has inspired her new sideline as a hotelier.

Suzy speaks to the visionary Colombian-born, Paris-based designer Haider Ackermann, about his career and his recent work as guest designer for the Jean Paul Gaultier brand.

On the day of the Christopher Kane London Fashion Week show, we release Suzy’s conversation with trailblazing Scottish designer Christopher Kane and his sister Tammy. They discuss the inspiration for the season, the how their upbringing shaped them, and their newfound freedom.

Season 7

Suzy sits down for a wide-ranging chat with inspirational designer and sustainability warrior Sybilla Sorondo, on a lively Thursday night in central Madrid.

Suzy speaks to the royal king of hairdos, Sam McKnight, about his stellar career and what it has brought to his life.

Suzy has a very special conversation with the Rome-raised, Paris-based fashion designer Giambattista Valli, about his work and his view of the fashion industry, and its impact on his life.

Suzy speaks to Joan Burstein, a.k.a. Mrs B of Browns, the legendary, groundbreaking boutique in South Molton Street, London, which Mrs B co-founded in 1970 with her late husband Sidney.

Suzy speaks to inspirational South African designer Thebe Magugu about his career and vision.

Suzy talks to iconic textile designer Celia Birtwell, ahead of the exhibition Mr & Mrs Clark, which explores Celia’s work with her former husband, the late Ossie Clark. The exhibition will take place from 17 September 2022 – 8 January 2023 at Museo del Tessuto, Prato, Italy.

Season 6

Suzy speaks to Dr Matthew L Scullin, American materials scientist and CEO of California-based MycoWorks, a company helming the drive to use fungal mycelium to make clothing and accessory materials.

Suzy speaks to American designer Daniel Roseberry, the current artistic director of the iconic brand, as Schiaparelli open their long-awaited retrospective exhibition at the Musée des Arts Décoratifs in Paris, Shocking! The surreal world of Elsa Schiaparelli.

Suzy speaks to the new artistic director of Pucci, Camille Miceli.

Just as finishing touches are made to the auction Hubert de Givenchy the Collector at Christie’s headquarters in Paris, Charles Cator, Deputy Chairman of Christie’s International and confidente of the haute couturier, exclusively talks Suzy through the designer’sart collections and furnishings, and discusses Givenchy’s love for artisans.

Season 5

Ahead of this year’s Homo Faber exhibition in Venice, Suzy speaks to Hanneli Rupert, organiser of the event and board member of the Michelangelo Foundation, and Alberto Cavalli, the foundation’s executive director. Together they discuss this year’s international show, championing artisanal talent. Homo Faber takes place from 10 April until 1 May 2022.

Suzy speaks to a photography legend: the ultimate celebrity insider, Dave Benett, who has taken iconic shots of Kate Moss, Elizabeth Hurley and hundreds of others. Dave has recently opened his solo exhibition, Great Shot Kid, at the JD Malat Gallery in London’s Mayfair; it’s showing until 8 March 2022.

Suzy speaks to an American success story: designer Anna Sui about her world, her career and how the 1990s provided her moment.

Suzy speaks to legendary and distinguished fashion and textile designer Dame Zandra Rhodes, about her life and career.

For her first episode of 2022, Suzy talks to fashion designer Simone Rocha about her ten years in the fashion industry, and winning the award for Independent British Brand at the 2021 Fashion Awards.

This week, Suzy celebrates the career of Manolo Blahnik, who speaks to Suzy from his home in Bath, England. They discuss his life, his parents, his factory and his archive collection, currently viewable at

This week, Suzy celebrates the career of Tommy Hilfiger, who speaks to Suzy directly before receiving an Outstanding Achievement award at The Fashion Awards.

For this special episode, Suzy is taken on an exclusive tour of Raeburn’s shop, archive and lab in Hackney, London, guided by Christopher Raeburn himself. Along the way, Suzy catches up with the designer about his company’s visionary stance on sustainability.

For her second episode of season five, Suzy talks to Pierre Rainero, Director of Image, Style and Heritage for Cartier, about the centenary of of English Art Works, the Maison’s historic London workshop.

Suzy talks to Kaat Debo, director of the MoMu (fashion museum) in Antwerp, about the reopening programme of the museum, Fashion 2.021 Antwerp – Fashion/Conscious, and about Antwerp’s crucial place in fashion history.

Season 4

For this Haute Couture special edition, the Creative Director of Balenciaga, Demna Gvasalia, discusses his first couture collection for the maison and the revival of Balenciaga Haute Couture. Demna’s collection is the maison‘s 50th couture collection – grand master Cristóbal Balenciaga’s final show was his 49th.

It is mind-opening to speak to fashion polymath Raffaello Napoleone, the CEO of Pitti Uomo, the world-renowned trade fair for men’s fashion, which is celebrating its 100th edition this year. Napoleone is also CEO of Pitti Immagine – the not-for-profit organisation that promotes the Italian fashion industry and ‘Made in Italy’ – and heads up Pitti Bimbo for children; Pitti Filati for yarns; and is a founder of the Polimoda fashion school with Linda Loppa, which helps to preserve the Italian fashion industry.

This week I am joined by Diane von Furstenberg, who talks to me about her new book, Own It – The Secret to Life (published by Phaidon) – a book that sums up her spirit with its title. As she revisits her story, three generations have now worn the wrap dress she invented to be the sensual, dynamic and appealing woman she wanted to be- “A woman in charge!” She tells me just how many projects she is still developing today while the famous dress that started it all has now achieved 15 million sales.

Britain’s top fashion-accessories designer shares her experiences in business and in life, and talks about her new book, If In Doubt – Wash Your Hair!, with its sincere advice on how to be happy. She also talks us through her latest venture, Anya Village – her takeover of Pont Street in London’s Knightsbridge – where instead of a post-pandemic parade of empty shops you will find an Anya Café, Salon, Village Hall, bespoke and ready-to-wear boutiques and more showcases for her ideas on sustainable, planet-friendly production.

The Belgian designer Dries van Noten talks to Suzy about his more than 30-year career and his training at the celebrated Royal Academy of Fine Arts, Antwerp, where tutor Linda Loppa nurtured the talents of the “Antwerp Six” – Dries van Noten, Ann Demeulemeester, Dirk Van Saene, Walter Van Beirendonck, Dirk Bikkembergs and Marina Yee – who together created the cult of Belgian fashion.

Our dear friend Alber Elbaz passed away on the 25th April, another victim of Covid-19. Over the next few weeksso much will be written about this exceptional and thoughtful designer, who genuinely loved and supported women. As a tribute to Alber, and as a gesture to the remarkable person he was, we are re-issuing the podcast we recorded together nearly a year ago. 

To celebrate Michael Kors’ 40 years in fashion, we are re-releasing this podcast so that his wise and witty words – and his imagination, energy and lively spirit – can be enjoyed once again in his anniversary year. Plus, award-winning musician Rufus Wainwright treats us all to a special performance.

Season 4, Episode 1: Orsola De Castro

Welcome to the fourth series of Creative Conversations with Suzy Menkes where we are celebrating a year since I launched the first episode of my podcast: an interview with Maria Grazia Chiuri of Dior.

In the first episode of this new season, I am joined by Orsola de Castro who spearheaded the global movement for change within the fashion industry and now heads Fashion Revolution.

Season 3

Season 3, Episode 7: Hermès, Nadège Vanhee-Cybulski

The Hermès Creative Director, Nadège Vanhee-Cybulski, shares her ideas about Hermès’ deep history, which was founded on horse saddles, but is now renowned for its neckties, handbags and increasingly for its discreetly elegant clothes.

Season 3, Episode 6: Sterling Ruby S.R. STUDIO. CA. LA. COUTURE

Artist Sterling Ruby reveals why he was invited to take part in Paris Haute Couture with his label S.R. STUDIO. CA. LA. COUTURE and how he went from a construction site to constructing high fashion. He is now crossing the boundaries of art by using fashion as an artistic medium of self-expression.

Season 3, Episode 5: Leonard Lauder

Leonard Lauder, Chairman Emeritus of Estée Lauder, is known around his company as the CTO, or “Chief Teaching Officer” – and for good reason.

Season 3, Episode 4: Philip Treacy

Behind the story of the little boy who sneaked over to use his mother’s sewing machine is a man who has had a profound effect on famous fashion houses – from Karl Lagerfeld’s Chanel to Ralph Lauren, Valentino, and Gianni Versace.

Season 3, Episode 3: Wes Gordon for Carolina Herrera

Wes Gordon, the Creative Director of Carolina Herrera, talks to Suzy about dressing Kamala Harris in a white suit on the 7th of November 2020 – the historic evening she became the first female Vice-President Elect of the United States of America.

Season 3, Episode 2: Andreas Kronthaler for Vivienne Westwood

Designer Andreas Kronthaler discusses his creative ideas and inspirations and shares insights into his other role as Vivienne Westwood’s husband.

Season 3, Episode 1: Giancarlo Giammetti, Valentino

To launch the third season of the podcast, Giancarlo Giammetti discusses what it means to be “Honorary President of the Valentino Fashion House”.

Season 2

Season 2, Episode 4: Chanel’s Bruno Pavlovsky

We’re off to Paris to speak with Bruno Pavlovsky, President of Chanel Fashion, who has worked with the famous Paris company for 30 years. Our conversation coincides with Chanel’s SS/21 show at Paris Fashion Week. Bruno has been instrumental in expanding the company’s presence in the fashion arena, first with Karl Lagerfeld and subsequently with the late designer’s right hand and current Creative Director, Virginie Viard.

Season 2, Episode 3: Laudomia Pucci

We go to Milan to talk to Laudomia Pucci, daughter of the aristocratic Marquis Emilio Pucci, who founded the fashion house famous for its distinctive swirling prints.

Season 2, Episode 2: Paul Smith

Suzy catches up with Paul Smith as he celebrates 50 years in fashion. Smith reveals the plans for his anniversary, and how – with his wife Pauline – he built the Paul Smith label over half a century.

Season 2, Episode 1: Valerie Steele of F.I.T. New York

To launch the second season of the podcast, the first four episodes are dedicated to the four fashion capitals – New York, London, Milan and Paris – as they busily prepare for Spring/Summer 2021 Ready-To-Wear. In New York, we meet the doyenne of the illustrious Fashion Institute of Technology.

Season 1

Season 1, Episode 13: Rosita Missoni and Margherita Missoni

For the season finale, Suzy is joined by Rosita Missoni and her granddaughter, Margherita Missoni Amos.

Season 1, Episode 12: Christian Louboutin

Suzy talks to “shoemaker to the stars”, Christian Louboutin, famous for his sexy, even fetishistic, footwear. And the symbol that defines his inventiveness? A racy, scarlet sole.

Season 1, Episode 11: Iris van Herpen and Carice van Houten

Suzy speaks to Iris van Herpen and Game of Thrones actress Carice van Houten as they collaborate on a digital presentation for the Autumn/Winter 2020-21 Haute Couture Week. The fashion industry has had to rethink how to present the collections, and each house has turned to submitting digital presentations instead of the traditional live-show format.

Season 1, Episode 10: Michael Kors

Suzy is joined by Michael Kors just as he prepares for his American sportswear label’s celebrations for its 40th anniversary next year.

Season 1, Episode 9: Duro Olowu

Duro Olowu is the fashion designer who works at the crossroads of fashion, art and culture, having developed himself as an art curator as well as a creative fashion artist. The two fit hand to glove as he expresses himself artistically through his fashion creations, or through selecting art for museum exhibitions.

Season 1, Episode 8: Richard Young

Suzy hears the behind-the-scenes of the famous images by celebrated photographer to the stars, Richard Young.

Season 1, Episode 7: Natalia Vodianova

The philanthropist and supermodel, Natalia Vodianova, discusses putting her fashion experiences to a good cause in support of her many charitable projects around the world.

Season 1, Episode 6: Federico Marchetti of YOOX Net-A-Porter

Suzy is joined by an entrepreneur with true vision – Federico Marchetti, Chairman and CEO of YOOX Net-A-Porter Group – who is celebrating the 20th anniversary of his company this year.

Season 1, Episode 5: Marine Serre

The young dynamic designer, Marine Serre, shares the insights behind the creativity that so impressed her mentor, Karl Lagerfeld.

Season 1, Episode 4: Balmain’s Olivier Rousteing

Suzy hears the moving and uplifting life story of the Creative Director of Balmain, Olivier Rousteing, whose personal triumphs are an inspiration to his legions of followers.

Season 1, Episode 3: Alber Elbaz

Suzy is joined by the thoughtful, funny and profound designer Alber Elbaz, as he enters a new fashion phase with the Richemont Group. Alber talks us through his career, from Geoffrey Beene to Guy Laroche then Yves Saint-Laurent Rive Gauche and 14 years at Lanvin, where he earned a reputation for creating looks loved by women the world over.

Season 1, Episode 2: Stephen Jones

For her second episode produced under lockdown, Suzy Menkes looks up – at the fantastical hats of milliner Stephen Jones.

Season 1, Episode 1: Dior’s Maria Grazia Chiuri

For the very first episode, Suzy welcomes Maria Grazia Chiuri, the Creative Director Femme of Christian Dior – the first woman to lead the brand, and one who has enriched it with her distinctive feminist and artistic vision. Whilst we are all in lockdown, Suzy and Maria Grazia discuss feminism, Couture, design inspiration – and growing up in a fashion family.