News & Runway

R.I.P. Colette: The Ultra-Cool French Concept Store Is Closing After 20 Years

After 20 years, Colette, the 213 rue Saint Honoré boutique known for serving up quirky-cool, high-low fashion product — everything from lighters to luxury apparel — is closing its doors. Founded in 1997 by Colette Roussaux, the three-story shop was one of the first to stock collections by Proenza Schouler, Mary Katrantzou, Simone Rocha and Rodarte. In recent years, Roussaux’s daughter Sarah Andelman has taken over creative direction of the boutique, which remains the go-to site for exclusive brand, capsule collection and indie magazine launches. The legendary store, e-store and attached café will shut down for good on December 20, 2017.

“As all good things must come to an end, after 20 wonderful years, Colette should be closing its doors on December 20 of this year,” reads the brand’s Insta-announcement. “Colette Roussaux has reached the time when she would like to take her time; and Colette cannot exist without Colette.”

Toutes les bonnes choses ont une fin. Après vingt années exceptionnelles, colette devrait définitivement fermer ses portes le 20 décembre prochain. Colette Roussaux arrive à l’âge où il est temps de prendre son temps ; or, colette ne peut exister sans Colette. Des échanges ont lieu avec Saint Laurent et nous serions fiers qu’une Marque aussi prestigieuse, avec qui nous avons régulièrement collaboré au fil des années, reprenne notre adresse. Nous sommes ravis du grand intérêt que Saint Laurent a montré dans ce projet, ce qui pourrait constituer une très belle opportunité pour nos salariés. Jusqu’au dernier jour, rien ne changera. colette continuera de se renouveler toutes les semaines comme d’habitude, avec une sélection unique et de nombreuses collaborations, également disponibles sur notre site colette.fr Nous vous remercions pour votre confiance, et à bientôt chez colette, jusqu’au 20 décembre! #colette BREAKING NEWS As all good things must come to an end, after twenty wonderful years, colette should be closing its doors on December 20th of this year. Colette Roussaux has reached the time when she would like to take her time; and colette cannot exist without Colette. Negotiations are under way with Saint Laurent and we would be proud to have a Brand with such a history, with whom we have frequently collaborated, taking over our address. We are happy of the serious interest expressed by Saint Laurent in this project, and it could also represent a very good opportunity for our employees. Until our last day, nothing will change. colette will continue to renew itself each week with exclusive collaborations and offerings, also available on our website colette.fr We thank you for your support and see you soon at colette–until December 20th!

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The coveted commercial space already has a prospective buyer. Interestingly, it’s former Colette adversary Saint Laurent. A quick history lesson: In 2013, Colette attracted the ire of the famed fashion label by carrying T-shirts that read “Ain’t Laurent Without Yves.” Jeanine Heller, founder of parody T-shirt company What About Yves, made the tops in response to Hedi Slimane’s decision to shorten the company’s name from Yves Saint Laurent to Saint Laurent. Heller got slapped with a trademark infringement suit; the tees were discontinued. Andelman received a letter care of Saint Laurent’s CEO “accusing her of selling counterfeit products that ‘seriously damaged’ the YSL brand and confirming the end of their business relationship.”

It seems the hatchet’s been buried. “Negotiations are under way with Saint Laurent and we would be proud to have a brand with such a history, with whom we have frequently collaborated, taking over our address,” wrote the brand in a statement. “We are happy of the serious interest expressed by Saint Laurent in this project, and it could also represent a very good opportunity for our employees.”

@erdemlondon #colette #erdem

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But where will the fashion flock go to get their fill of never-before-heard-of, impossibly cool designers? “It’s the only shop where I go because they have things no one else has,” Karl Lagerfeld told Business of Fashion last year. “I buy watches, telephones, jewelry there — everything really! They have invented a formula that you can’t copy easily, because there is only one Colette and her and Sarah are 200 percent involved.”

The answer remains to be seen. Dover Street Market’s certainly a contender. In the meantime, the collector’s value of the upcoming H&M Studio x Colette capsule just went way, way up.

[ via Business of Fashion ]