French designer Sonia Rykiel passed away yesterday at the age of 86. The news was confirmed by her daughter Nathalie Rykiel.
Nicknamed the Queen of Knitwear for her colourful knit creations, Rykiel had been suffering from Parkinson’s disease for 15 years.
Rykiel had begun her career in 1962 when she was pregnant, which influenced and shaped her practical-yet-chic design philosophy. Unable to find anything to wear during her pregnancy, Rykiel had designed the Poor Boy Sweater, a dress and sweater that had high arm holes and a shrunken fit.
Rykiel’s gender-bending, high-fashion but comfortable styles were a favourite amongst early clients like Brigitte Bardot and Audrey Hepburn, and to this day still have fans around the world.
Rykiel is survived by her children Nathalie and Jean-Philippe Rykiel.