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Fashion's First Reseller.

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THE BEST OF PAST COLLECTIONS

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Régine Zylberberg
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Régine Zylberberg
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The Queen of the Night looks back on her crystals-and-feathers-streaked career, from her friendship with Karl Lagerfeld to her 700-piece shoe collection..

“Give me anything with glitter or sequins and I am in,” Régine Zylberberg tells RE-SEE. Such a declaration should come as no surprise from Paris’s infamous red-haired Queen of the Night; in her 1970s heyday, the proprietress had 23 clubs around the world (think: London, Monte Carlo, and Kuala Lumpur)—not to mention everyone from Diana Vreeland to Serge Gainsbourg and Salvador Dali clamoring to get through her practically iron-clad doors. (As legend has it, in 1976, upon arriving to Chez Régine’s newly opened Park Avenue outpost, Mick Jagger was refused entry for wearing sneakers and no tie.) “I loved every single moment of that life,” Zylberberg, now aged 91, muses. “Every night, every party.”

Here, she looks back on her crystals-and-feathers-streaked career, from her friendship with Karl Lagerfeld to the fantastical creations she wore throughout.

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I started off as what you would call the “dame pipi,” which is the girl at the toilet entrance. Very quickly I moved up to coat girl and to working behind the bar at Whiskey à Gogo. I met Serge Gainsbourg there. He used to play the piano at the bar across the road. We became great mates, and, later, he would write me some of my best songs. I tackled many roles at the Whisky à Gogo—I started putting vinyl records on and changing them, so, in some ways, I was a DJ. I would come up with plenty of ideas for the place to be full, and eventually I opened my first club in the 6th arrondissement in Paris.

Malina Jospeh Gilchrist
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I started by saying my club was full, so people were desperate to come to it. It did not matter who you were—you would not get through the doors! It was full. After three months, the queues were crazy! There was no jukebox—someone would change the vinyls. I had live music, too—and themed parties. It was a success. Everyone was there. By the late ’70s, I had 23 nightclubs all around the world. I would be in a different club every couple of days. It was insane. I don’t have the best memory, but I loved every single moment of that life. Every night, every party. I chose my clientele and everybody had a blast, as did I.

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When I met Karl Lagerfeld he was 23 years old. It was in my nightclub in the 6th. He was working at Patou. He was a bit chubby and we both decided to diet together. He stayed thin… I, well, was me. He was always chic, and made me feel chic and beautiful. That’s why Chanel became one of my favorite brands. It made me feel like a woman, one that could be taken seriously. Karl also made all my outfits for my themed Brazilian parties and for the carnivals every year. Those outfits were some of my favorites—they had crystals and feathers and glitter and sequins. I gave them to the Museum of Modern Art when it opened. Karl was an amazing friend, an amazing artist. He was straight to the point and I liked that.

Régine Zylberberg
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He also gave me 50% off, so my cupboards were full. I was quite the envy of my friends. You read the truth about my 700-piece shoe collection. My favorite brands are Chanel, Louboutin, and Jimmy Choo. I like high heels. I never liked a platform, which reminds me of the war, so I always liked a pointy-toed high heel—but that hurts, so to heal my heels I would plunge them into icy water, and then I would run back and dance the flamenco for another four hours. Nowadays, I am only in ballet shoes, but I still dance. I guess I have kitchen discos and guinguettes.

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In the ’70s I had the honor to present my line, Zoa by Régine, at Bloomingdale’s. I had all the left windows and Diane von Furstenburg had all the right ones. Mine looked like my clubs—I had models dancing in all of my dresses, which were very eccentric and colorful with lots of chiffon. We even had a runway in my club in New York and in Paris. It was so much fun.

I have always loved clothes. They have helped me set the tone of who I am. I did not have much when I was young, so when I had the means I went a bit crazy. Today, though, I don’t need so much anymore, and I have decided to part with some of my most beautiful items because I hope they will go into someone else’s closet and have another life and a blast.

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I wore a lot of Ungaro because his materials—silks, leathers, and especially his prints—were so beautiful and unique. I felt myself in his designs. I have over 40 pieces from him, some of which I consigned with Resee. The pieces I gave to Resee from Jean Paul Gaultier mean a lot to me too because I love him for his eccentricity. I have about 30 pieces of his. He used to make my costume for one of my shows at the Bouffe du Nord theater. He has been a friend for years and I respect and adore him… There's also a black jacket with fur cuffs that used to get me a lot of attention. People used to think I was a lady when I wore that, that I was the real deal. It’s from Guy Laroche, a designer I admire for his delicacy and his lines, which always made a woman look her best. I consigned a lot of Chanel pieces and they are all classic looks for me—the silk shirt and the suits. Perfection. But, really, give me anything with glitter or sequins and I am in.

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I am not nostalgic at all, but there is one item I can’t part with: my red ostrich boa. Nine Verges made it for me, and the owner of the Moulin Rouge gave it to me as a gift. I thought I could part with it, but I just couldn’t in the end. It embodies my eccentricity, my vibrancy, and my fun. In a way, too, my career. I think I will keep it forever. Maybe I’ll even be buried with it!

as told to Zoe Ruffner

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Régine's Personal Collection

Fetching results, please wait...
Size

38 FR

Condition

Very Good

Guy Laroche

Vintage Beaded Fur Trim Dress

650€
Size

-

Condition

Good

Vintage / Other

Lace Embellished Head Piece

320€
Size

42 FR

Condition

Very Good

Guy Laroche

'70s Velvet & Mink Fur Coat

780€
Size

38 FR

Condition

Very Good

Issey Miyake

'90s Pleated Dress Ensemble

430€
Size

-

Condition

Very Good

Louis Vuitton

Minaudiere Motard Clutch Bag

1250€
Size

44 FR

Condition

Excellent

Chanel

2004 Tassel Silk Blouse

890€
Size

-

Condition

Good

Vintage / Other

Jeweled Panther Brooch

430€
Size

44 FR

Condition

Very Good

Chanel

2001 Tweed Belted Coat

Sold
Size

-

Condition

Very Good

Vintage / Other

Maison Michel Metallic Brim Hat

170€
Size

40 FR

Condition

Good

Guy Laroche

'70s Embellished Gown

480€
Size

-

Condition

Very Good

Vintage / Other

Jeweled Frog Brooch

340€
Size

38 FR

Condition

Excellent

Chanel

1999 Metallic Parka Bomber

Sold
Size

-

Condition

Very Good

Vintage / Other

Flower Appliqué Barrette

190€
Size

40 FR

Condition

Excellent

Chanel

1992 Cashmere Knit Skirt

590€
Size

-

Condition

Very Good

Christian Dior

Vintage Velvet Lady Dior Mini Bag

Sold
Size

-

Condition

Good

Chanel

Quilted Tote Bag

2100€
Size

-

Condition

Good

Christian Dior

'70s Hammered Silver Bowl Set

Sold
Size

38 FR

Condition

Very Good

Lanvin

'70s Lace Slip Dress

640€
Size

-

Condition

Very Good

Chanel

Caviar Leather Wallet

380€
Size

40 FR

Condition

Very Good

Christian Dior

'90s Baroque Embellished Silk Ensemble

780€
Size

39.5

Condition

Good

Chanel

Classic Bicolor Slingback Sandals

Sold
Size

40 FR

Condition

Very Good

Chanel

Lace Knit Maxi Dress

1180€
Size

-

Condition

Good

Vintage / Other

Strass Strawberry Earring & Brooch Set

380€
Size

44 FR

Condition

Excellent

Chanel

1999 Wool Pencil Skirt

250€
Size

-

Condition

Good

Chanel

Rare '90s Oval Camera Lens Sunglasses

950€
Size

39

Condition

Good

Chanel

Fur Trim Patent Boots

600€
Size

-

Condition

Very Good

Vintage / Other

Maison Michel Chainlink Embellished Fedora

210€
Size

44 FR

Condition

Very Good

Chanel

Sequin Embellished Evening Jacket

Sold
Size

-

Condition

Very Good

Tiffany & Co

'60s Sterling Silver Seashell Change Tray

Sold
Size

38.5

Condition

Good

Chanel

Bicolor Metallic Slingback Sandals

250€
Size

-

Condition

Good

Christian Dior

'70s Hammered Silver Mini Tray

180€
Size

-

Condition

Good

Louis Vuitton

Patent Monogram "Sarah" Wallet

310€
Size

39

Condition

Very Good

Chanel

Classic "CC" Pumps

340€
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