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Vyacheslav “Slava” Zaitsev, a renowned Soviet fashion designer known for his use of vibrant Russian traditional elements in his designs, passed away on Sunday at the age of 85, according to Russian news sources.

According to a statement on the website of his fashion brand, Zaitsev, who was born in 1938 into a working-class family, received his first worldwide acclaim in 1963 when the French magazine Paris Match featured his line of overalls for women workers.

According to the RIA news agency, the Experimental Clothing Factory, for which Zaitsev worked, rejected the collection’s vibrant, floral jackets and skirts.

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In the 1960s, he was referred to as “Red Dior” in the French press.

He started off as the artistic director of the avant-garde All-Union House of Fashion Models in Moscow in 1965, and some of his creations, which frequently incorporated flowery traditional Russian patterns, were shown in the West.

Women’s outfits based on sketches by Zaitsev and others were displayed in 1969 at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Following the performance, Zaitsev was approached about opening stores in the West, but the Soviet authorities turned him down.

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Zaitsev left the All-Union House of Models in 1979 and opened a small atelier, which he transformed into the Slava Zaitsev Moscow Fashion House in 1982. As a result, he was the first Soviet designer to be permitted to brand his apparel.

Musicians, actors, socialites, and politicians were just a few of Zaitsev’s wealthy Russian clients.

Mikhail Gorbachev’s international renown increased in the 1980s because to Raisa Gorbacheva, the late Soviet Union’s last president.

Lyudmila, the ex-wife of Russian President Vladimir Putin, was also one of his clients.

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Zaitsev stated in a letter on his website, “I was extraordinarily lucky because from the beginning of my conscious life I decided, thank God, what to aim for, who I should be. Thank God, I discovered the purpose of life while looking for harmony and perfection using the highest forms of dress, painting, and graphics, photography, and poetry.