Simon Porte Jacquemus

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.

Founder and designer of Jacquemus, Paris.

HAYLEY PHELAN: What’s the function of fashion?

SIMON PORTE JACQUEMUS: Fashion is poetry. It’s a way to tell a story, to say something in this world, because you always send a message with what you wear.

PHELAN: Yet, fashion is also a business.

JACQUEMUS: Absolutely. I sell poetry. For me, there is no point in fashion if you don’t sell. That is why what you see in my runway shows is what we sell. I like to have that transparency. Now with Instagram and social media, people see a fashion show and they want to buy what they see.

PHELAN: There’s been a lot of talk about shifting to a see-now, buy-now retail model. What’s your take?

JACQUEMUS: From a creative point of view, it’s impossible. Of course, as a customer, we all want something in one second. We are all impatient now. But there is a difference between a fashion piece and a supermarket product. [The new retail model] kills creation and it kills small designers. It might be possible for some accessories and for a T-shirt, but not for a whole collection.

PHELAN: You founded your label in 2009, during the e-commerce boom. How has that impacted your business?

JACQUEMUS: Many of my big retail partners are online. It used to be that if you came from a small village, like me, you had to go to Paris to find a beautiful shop to buy a designer. Now everyone can buy designer clothing, no matter where they are, because they buy online. That’s totally changed the game. We’re growing faster than expected. At the same time, the internet comes with fast fashion and with copies.

PHELAN: What do you think shopping will look like in ten years?

JACQUEMUS: In the future there will be one big bubble with everything inside, from Pokémon Go to Net-a-Porter to magazines. It will be a platform that combines social media, e-commerce, and media. In Asia they already have platforms where you can do everything you need to do, so you can chat with a friend and buy something at the same time. America is behind, but we’ll catch up.

For more from our “The State of Fashion” portfolio, click here.