Patching With Olivier Theyskens

This article is part of a series examining Responsible Fashion and innovative efforts to address issues facing the fashion industry.

PARIS — The Belgian designer Olivier Theyskens may be fashion’s greatest hoarder. For years — since his art school days in Brussels in the mid-1990s — he has kept nearly all of the fabric swatches he has ordered. “Thousands and thousands,” he said in his courtyard atelier of a regal 17th-century Paris mansion on a hot afternoon.

He wasn’t kidding. In the entrance hall, cardboard boxes overflowed with swatches. In the back, cabinet drawers erupted with more, sorted by color and texture — black crepes in one; pink laces in another.

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