Krikor Jabotian | Behind The Scenes with Chapter One

A fresh graduate of l’Ecole Superieure des Arts et techniques de la Mode in Beirut, Krikor Jabotian began working at Elie Saab’s creative department, an all-encompassing and enriching introduction to the industry. Krikor Jabotian can be considered a leading haute couturier, his overtly feminine aesthetic and romantic crystal-encrusted gowns are sure to attracted any lady whose eyes fall on them. If Jabotian does have something in common with the classic Lebanese designers – whether Chakra or Saab on the red carpet – it’s a dramatic quality. This high drama is apparent in a Jabotian designed wedding dress, his biggest market in Lebanon. Here is the story he shared with Haute Arabia…

Krikor Jabotian

Khansa (HA): Tell me a little about yourself. Where are you from? What’s your educational background? What are your general professional and non-professional interests?

Krikor: I studied at l’Ecole Superieure des Arts et techniques de la Mode in Beirut. Soon after, I began work at the Elie Saab creative department, which was an incredibly enriching experience. Eventually I left Saab to pursue my own independent designs. That’s when I was selected by Starch foundation, a non-profit organization founded by Rabih Kayrouz, to showcase my work. I opened my first atelier at the age of 21. At 23 moved to a bigger more prolific space and now at the same atelier

Khansa (HA): You have indeed come a long way in such a short time! What does fashion mean to you?

Krikor: It’s an extension of my personality. A way of expressing my fetishes and fantasies, all things that inspire me are projected in my clothes.


Khansa (HA): That is indeed deep! Tell me how was it working for the couture maestro Elie Saab? What did you learn from him?

Krikor: Working at Elie Saab made me embrace elements I was previously reluctant about. I challenged my personal likes and dislikes. Embroidery for example, is something I learned to love. I did a lot of research about different techniques and eventually incorporated them in my own way.

Khansa (HA): I am sure it was a great way to start of your career. What was the first article of clothing you ever designed?

Krikor: A 60-meter gothic wedding gown. It was my final year project inspired from Tim Burton’s Corpse Bride.


Khansa (HA): Interesting! How would you define your personal style?

Krikor: Depends on my mood. Sometimes I’m extremely casual in sportswear; other times I pull out the black Japanese minimalistic outfits. In both cases I always have fun with accessories, specifically my rings.

Khansa (HA): What has been the highlight of your career to date?

Krikor: When I turned my company into a family business and became truly responsible of every aspect of my work.

 Khansa (HA): So inspirational! Where do you see yourself in 10 years’ time?

Krikor: I hope I would have grow and expand intelligently, building the path for a maison with an enduring essence.


Khansa (HA): I wish the same for you too! Would definitely love to see more beautiful designs and collections from your end in the years to come. Which designer do you admire and why?

Krikor: Madame Grès, whose designs are timeless and still of great relevance today. I love Alexander McQueen’s twisted classicism. Christian Lacroix, whose designs are paintings that have come to life. Comme de garcon for the construction and deconstruction of garments.

 Khansa (HA): Where do you get your design inspirations from?

Krikor: Anything and everything. Inspiration has no boundaries. I soak in my surroundings and find inspiration in the vulgar and the beautiful.

Khansa (HA): 

  • If you were not a designer what would you be doing?

Krikor: Anything related to fine Arts. When I was young my family thought I would turn out to be a painter. I also had an interest in sculpture. Even now as a fashion designer, I like to experiment with jewelry.

Khansa (HA): Which is the favorite piece of clothing you ever designed?

Krikor: A beautiful off white jacket I designed for my mother with several unfinished layers and ruffles.

Khansa (HA): Oh that is indeed sweet! Who is your ultimate woman to see wearing your designs?

Krikor: Sarah Jessica Parker is one of them.


 Khansa (HA): What one piece of advice would you give to someone wanting to start a career in fashion?

Krikor: Be open to possibilities. Even if you think you’ve figured out your identity, experiment. 

Khansa (HA): What trends do you see being big for 2013?

Krikor: I’m not big on trends. Don’t follow them much.

Khansa (HA): Do you have a theme for each of your collections? What is the theme for your 2013 collection?

Krikor: My theme is usually centered around my current state of mind. For SS13 I’m thinking it will be an extension of my current collection Chapter One. I have so many ideas within that same spirit that I would like to further develop within that same spirit.


Khansa (HA): Thank you Krikor for being with us today! Hope to have you more on Haute Arabia! In the meantime, we would like to wish you luck on your upcoming collections!

Feature Editor: Khansa AJ

For seeing his entire collection, please visit:

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