Nathalie and Jean-Philippe Rykiel
Nathalie and Jean-Philippe Rykiel are the children of French fashion designer, Sonia Rykiel. Their iconic fashion designer mother has passed at age 86. She had been diagnosed with Parkinsons more than 15 years ago.
It was Nathalie Rykiel who broke the news to media saying: “My mother died at 05:00 this morning at her home in Paris from the effects of Parkinsons.”
Sonia Flis was born in Neuilly, Paris May 25, 1930; to a Romanian father and Russian mother.
Rykiel’s design career started in 1962, when she created her own jumpers to wear during her pregnancy. Her eponymous first store opened in 1968 on Paris’s Left Bank. Early clients included Brigitte Bardot, Catherine Deneuve and Audrey Hepburn.
Though her career started in knitwear, Rykiel has gone on to create numerous ready-to-wear collections, as well as branching in to menswear, childrenswear, accessories, fragrances, and interiors. Her brand now has more than 1,000 outlets worldwide.
In 2009, she was awarded The Order of Légion d’Honneur in recognition of her 40 years of service in the French fashion industry. Sonia was married to boutique owner, Sam Rykiel. The couple remained married from 1953–1968. You can read more about him below.
They produced two children, Nathalie Rykiel was born in 1955 and her younger brother, Jean-Philippe Rykiel was born in 1961. Their mother was often referred to as “The Queen of Knits” who was known for garments like the famous Poor Boy Sweater. She authored several books and was voted as one of the world’s ten most elegant women in 1980.
Nathalie Rykiel (pictured above) has been involved in her mother’s label for many years. She joined the brand in 1975, first as a model and later becoming vice president and art director. Nowadays, she is not just the creative director of her mother’s company, but the president of the Sonia Rykiel fashion label –a position she has held since 2007.
Nathalie Rykiel was married to Simon Burstein, with whom she became the mother of three daughters: Tatiana, Lola and Salome. She and Burstein separated in 2006.
The mom of three has created not only a number of clothing lines for “Sonia Rykiel” but also has created numerous fragrances for the house as well; starting with le Parfum 81997), then l’Eau de Sonia Rykiel (1998) and Rykiel Homme (1999).
In 2002, she created “Rykiel woman”, a concept dedicate to sensuality and pleasure, in which erotica and sex-toys mingle with gifts and clothes in the heart of Saint-Germain-des-Prés.
In 2008, to mark the House’s 40th anniversary, she organized an homage to “Sonia Rykiel”.
Nathalie Rykiel is active on Instagram.
Jean-Philippe Rykiel is a French composer. He has been blind since his birth due to hospital negligence.
He is known for his collaborations with African musicians.
Jean-Philippe Rykiel showed his interest in music at an early age. According to his Facebook page, Jean-Philippe Rykiel taught himself piano from a very early age.
It was in the 70’s that he gained public attention as part of the Crystal Machine audio-visual project. Through his career he’s done duets with Tim Blake and has collaborated with world musicians, notably Malian singer Salif Keita, Tibetan monk Lama Gyurme and Senegalese singer and percussionist Youssou N’Dour.
Jean-Philippe Rykiel has been involved in many pioneering projects – from Salif Keita’s “Soro” to ” The Lama’s Chant” and has gained a reputation as one of the world’s foremost keyboard players who also has impressive talents as a writer, arranger and producer. « Under The Tree » is his long awaited second solo album, due for release in October 2003.
He has his own website, where you can check out a full list of his work.