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April 19 2014

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A.P.C.’s Jean Touitou: “Hip Is Not A Job”

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“There are too many hip kids,” mused A.P.C. founder Jean Touitou on a recent afternoon. “Hip is not a job. It makes me worry about the future.” Touitou, who knows something about hip, was in New York City playing part-time fashion week flaneur; he turned up at the Purple magazine dinner and at the Rodarte after-party for a little fieldwork in professional cool. However that made him feel about the future, Touitou’s more pressing preoccupation these days is with the past. He and his Madras co-designer Jessica Ogden are currently at work on a quilting project (part art exhibition, part retail initiative) for which they dug fabric out of the A.P.C. archives and delivered it to women in India who have been specially trained in the handicraft style of the American South. “My mother was a quilter,” Touitou explained, “and so was Jessica’s mother. We share the obsession.”

Touitou, in fact, has held on to a prize quilt of his mother’s for years: It’s currently in his Paris studio, and, before that, hung in his old band’s practice space. That’s another past era he’s been mining recently. “You can see the quilt in this picture of the band,” he said. There’s the quilt, and there’s young Jean (right), guitar in hand, looking hip (if not professionally so). The photo ended up getting screened on a T-shirt for Fall ’10. “When the printer finished it, he called and said, ‘Your Dylan tee is ready,’ ” Touitou recalled. “He thought I was Dylan! It was the best day of my life.”

Photo: Courtesy of A.P.C.

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  1. stylaholicCreature says:

    the hip comment needs to be expanded….does Jean mean that kids are funneling their energy into being hip rather than creating or working? i was just thinking about what it means to be a “poser” in this city, walking around Chelsea today. example: that guy looks like an artist…or maybe he just dresses up like one..

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