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August 21 2014

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Ending Paris Fashion Week On A Dropped Beat

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Over the past 25 years, A.P.C. chief Jean Touitou has built an empire on what he calls “boring” fashion: “It’s only clothes,” he says, “but that’s what it’s about.” Every Parisienne worth her A.P.C. trench would agree, starting with Vanessa Seward: In the designer’s first season at the company, she asked not for a paycheck but for clothes. “Working with Jean is like being at home; I always try on the whole collection. It’s totally utilitarian Rive Gauche,” said Seward as her husband, musician/composer/producer Bertrand Burgalat, took command of the turntables. “My dream is to be dressed in A.P.C. and Valentino, but as I can’t afford Valentino I buy their shoes and the rest is A.P.C. or vintage.” Her success in her current gig has been such that Touitou is considering expanding her purview from her capsule collection to the regular line in seasons ahead.

The crowd at the freshly redone, Laurent Deroo-designed label HQ in the sixth arrondissement to toast the anniversary was a cultural mash-up of photographers (von Unwerth), publishers, artists (Sophie Calle), fashion folk (two Le-Tans, André Saraiva, Victoire de Castellane, Inès de la Fressange, Caroline de Maigret, Lanvin’s Elie Top), and music-world tastemakers. A noted music lover, Touitou (pictured above, with revelers) got on board with rap early on; the A.P.C. site features 26 self-produced music compilations and the in-house recording studio is open to staff and friends. Hence the presence of Metronomy band members, Jarvis Cocker, and Kanye West. As he scanned the remarkably laid-back, hysteria-free crowd, Touitou remarked, “Nowhere else in Paris do you find this. This is A.P.C.”

Photo: Courtesy of A.P.C.

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