How to wear it: Maud Rabin

In less than four years as global brand director of rare champagne, Maud Rabin has transformed the Piper-Heidsieck brand into a maison of luxury repute. Rabin, who was a French synchronised-swimming champion at the tender age of 10, radiates the kind of insouciance that sartorially alluring French women seem to possess. The Angers-born mother of two is a walking masterclass in classic, yet quirky dressing and is most at home in vintage jeans, a man’s shirt and JM Weston loafers. Lee Osborne caught up with her recently to discuss her style journey

Rare Champagne - © Marco Strullu

I know that you live in Paris, and work between there and Reims, and that you have family in Angers, so will you be between two places during Christmas/January?

Actually, I will be in the French Riviera, then Lyon, my other city of romance! Every week I do Paris-Lyon-Reims.

What items of clothing will you pack for those two places?

For the Riviera, Christmas dinner: I’m going to take my dresses with sequined lace by Alexis Mabille and my heels from Sergio Rossi and for the rest of the weekend my must-haves: IRO Paris jeans, Golden Goose by Bonpoint sneakers and my Bleu Nuit Saint James sweater.

What are your must-haves when you pack?

  • Levis or IRO Paris jeans
  • Turtleneck sweaters (I have so many colours, from a multitude of brands)
  • Sneakers, one pair of black heels
  • Black jacket and little black dress
  • Basic T-shirt (from American Apparel) in black, white and grey

What are your beauty must-haves?

  • Lashilé Gummies for hair, “Mon Shampoing” brand
  • Eucerin Night and Day cream
  • Clarins Serum
  • Elizabeth Arden Eight Hour cream, applied once a week

What brand/type of suitcase do you carry?

My black Samsonite, which I’ve had for 15 years now. I also have a black leather 48-hour bag, which I had made in Djerba, that I love too. I’ve had this one for more than 20 years now and it always reminds me of the sun and my best friend who gave it to me as a present. I recently bought my two daughters an American Tourister case each (one purple and one green) – so it’s easier, funnier and more convenient to recognise them whenever we are in the airport!

What is your go-to handbag?

Will you be going skiing any time soon?

Not really, although I admire people who go skiing. I prefer watching the snow, in front of a roaring fire or even better still enjoying a massage in the spa of a beautiful hotel. If I could, I would love to spend Christmas/New Year in a tropical location, enjoying the sun, beach and sea.

What items of clothing/brands do you turn to during the colder season?

I think I have all the colours of the Uniqlo quilted winter jacket. But my must-have is a white wool handmade outfit.

I have two actually: one black one from Chloé and my blue one from Liberty of London.

What’s your go-to city coat?

An Alexis Mabille black raincoat

What’s your go-to country coat?

Long, brown cardigan that my mother kindly gave me.
As for accessories, a pair of brown leather gloves bought at Galeries Lafayette

Do you swap your city heels for country boots? If so, which brands and style?

It depends! I can mow the lawn in leather boots from F Pinet. But I usually like gardening in my Burberry black boots.

What is your dream vacation?

A Nile cruise.

What’s your secret tip for anyone who has to travel for work constantly?

Before taking the plane, switch directly to the timing of the country you will be visiting to avoid jetlag. Drink the glass of champagne the air hostess offers you then meditate.

What’s your jetlag cure?

  • Drink a carrot/orange/ginger fresh juice every morning
  • Elizabeth Arden, Eight Hour cream – apply on the very first night
  • Five minutes’ meditation twice a day

What is the most fashionable place you have been to?

I would have to say Tokyo: I love the way they mix colours, style… they have a true elegance in their eccentricity. They are very refined, selecting the best fabrics… every detail counts and is respected.

Who are your style influences?

  • Cultures: from The Orient/The Far East, from the past
  • Women: Giovanna Battaglia Engelbert, Natalie Massenet
  • Icons: Lee Radziwill and Jackie Kennedy, Lee Miller, Coco Chanel, YSL, Jacqueline de Ribes
  • Media: Vogue Italia, Vanity Fair UK, Harper’s Bazaar UK, Numero France.

Who did you inherit your sense of style from?

My godmother. She was the most stylish woman I have ever seen in my life. Her style inspired me and founded my fashion roots and style.

An under-the-radar Parisian designer you admire?

Alexis Mabille, who doesn’t get the recognition his talent deserves in my opinion. He is one of the 13 French Haute Couture houses. His is the only French family company now and his dresses are stocked in Harrods. 

What’s the hottest arrondissement in Paris right now?

Definitely the 9th!

Follow Maud’s style journey on Instagram: @maudrabin

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