Lebanese couturier Elie Ward passed away on Monday, October 24, leaving behind a 7o-year legacy upheld by his son and designer Tony Ward. The sad news comes in the same year as the fashion house’s double celebration, which marked the 25th anniversary of the Tony Ward brand and 70 years since the late designer established Ward Ateliers in 1952. In tribute, the fashion house has released a heartfelt statement, and a retrospective of Ward’s lauded career.
“He as one of the first pioneers of Lebanese couture talent, laying the groundwork and paving the way for designers emerging from the country today,” reads the statement. “Elie’s creations were a must-have for Lebanese high-society women. Famous for his tailored suits, which were known to last a lifetime, Elie was still handling the suits manufacturing up until few years ago. 70 years later, his savoir-faire is, and will always be, alive in the Ateliers. Generations of tailors and ‘petites mains’ learned from him the secrets of tailoring and the passionate commitment to exquisite craftsmanship and perfection in the details.”
It continues: “He will always be remembered for being warm, generous, down-to-earth but also serious and direct when creating in the Ateliers. He proved dedication to his passion until his very last days at work…”