Julien DOSSENA

By
Photography David Bailey

Published August 16, 2016

HAIR PRODUCTS: KIEHL’S, INCLUDING SILK GROOM SERUM. HAIR: TYLER JOHNSTON FOR KIEHL’S/ONE REPRESENTS. GROOMER: ANDREW GALLIMORE FOR NARS/CLM. MAKEUP: ZOE TAYLOR FOR DARPHIN/JED ROOT. STUDIO MANAGER: MARK PATTENDEN. PHOTO ASSISTANTS: FENTON BAILEY, MALAK KABBANI. MAKEUP ASSISTANT: LILY GREGORY.

Artistic director of Paco Rabanne, Paris.

HAYLEY PHELAN: How does fashion connect to culture?

JULIEN DOSSENA: You always try to guess what the customer wants and what will fit into her lifestyle, so clothes are always a reflection of what’s going on culturally. Fashion is very sociological.

PHELAN: How does that impact the design process?

DOSSENA: You don’t think about it. You digest what you are living, and it goes back into the clothes. For instance, in Paris right now, you are not thinking about lightness and romance; you are thinking about garments that protect, that she can run fast in. It’s tougher than before.

PHELAN: How has the role of the designer changed over the years?

DOSSENA: Most designers today are working for labels that are not theirs. We’re employees. Most of the big jobs are working for another brand, and that changes a lot because you are not the boss. You have to adapt to the strategy of the owner, whether you agree with it or not. The biggest challenge I think we’re experiencing is how to work for someone.

PHELAN: I know you’re a fan of sci-fi. What do you think we’ll be wearing in the future?

DOSSENA: It will be a big mix of things. There will be more of a focus on self-expression and individualism, and at the same time, it will have to be practical and comfortable.

PHELAN: Do you think wearable tech will become the norm?

DOSSENA: I don’t think we’re there yet. Style will always be the aim when you buy clothes. One day someone will make it easy to inject tech elements into designs, and we’ll be able to make clothes look good without losing any of the ease or style that we all want. But until then, I don’t think the customer cares enough.

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