jean touitou, dirty works
Beautiful, raw, indigo denim and immaculate tailoring are at the heart of A.P.C. But it’s time to start all over again. Fashion’s king of denim has reset the agenda, which is no bad thing if the prevailing mode has left you feeling a little bit stiff...
On the release of his new collection, Jean details his dislike of the word 'darling', his collaboration with Yeezy, and why he's taking his models and mega-sales to Soho.
Have you ever contemplated what life would be like without fashion shows? If not, then what if clothes didn't have labels? How would the latest trends become set? How would designers showcase their collections? Or, more importantly, how would we distinguish between Chanel and Gucci? Wait, would there even be a Chanel or Gucci? Although for brand-devotees this might feel like a nightmare scenario full of blood hungry zombies wearing Primark, this ain't no fashion apocalypse. It's a real thing and these are the very reasons why Jean Touitou's brand A.P.C. is so successful, and after 25 years he still stays true to his vision. Why? Because everyone knows his jeans are pure blue-sky thinking. His customers aren't looking for labels, they're looking for his love. His two anti-establishment golden rules would probably be enough for most of us— but not for Touitou. This regal rebel believes that dirty is the new clean, turning The View's "I've had the same jeans on for four days now" into a style mantra. We shot some questions over to Jean and this is exactly how he replied, CAPS lock and all...
Raw indigo jeans with no visible branding is the signature for A.P.C., how do you think this will fit in with today's culture of branding and splashing logo's on everything?
When I launched them over 25 years ago there were logos and branding everywhere, so I did them as a reaction to that and they found a good following. I expect the same is true today.
Why do you think branding has become so important?
BECAUSE THAT IS THE WAY TO KEEP CUSTOMERS AS SLAVES TO THE BRANDS.
Why don't you brand your jeans?
THE WAY IT AGES IS THE BRANDING, AND MY NON BRANDING IS A BRANDING SINCE EVERYONE BRANDS.
You've recently extended the denim collection, what's new about these pieces?
The newest thing is the stretch. I do like the A.P.C. raw denim but it was limiting, especially when making new shapes for women.
Describe the typical A.P.C. customer…
I honestly dont know but I am happy to have them!
What are your top three tips for washing jeans?
1. Don't wash them.
2. Don't wash them.
3. Don't wash them.
AND IF THEY STINK A BIT AFTER A WHILE, PUT THEM IN A BATH TUB WITH SOME GENTLE SOAP, AND WASH THEM A BIT. Nobody needs to be embarrassed.
What was the thinking behind the denim that was included in the Kanye West collaboration?
We designed the jean around Kanye himself and they way he wanted to wear them. Low on the waist and tight at the calf and ankle.
Why do you present rather than have a show?
I LIKE TO EXPLAIN STUFF / I LIKE EDITORS TO BE ABLE TO GET THE VIBE / I DON'T LIKE SPENDING HALF A MILLION IN TEN MINUTES.
I LIKE TO BE UNLIKE EVERYBODY ELSE / I DO NOT LIKE THE STAGE OF TOTAL DEPRESSION ONE HAS THE NIGHT AFTER A SHOW, EVEN IF SUCCESSFULL / I HAVE A SERIOUS PROBLEM WITH THE FIRST ROW POWER SITUATION / I HAVE A PROBLEM IF MY STAFF HAVE TO DEAL WITH MODEL AGENTS WHO CALL EVERYBODY "DARLING "/ I LIKE TO REALLY DIG IN MY MIND TO FIND THE RIGHT WORDINGS OF WHAT I WILL SAY / I LIKE TO TAKE A CHANCE TO FEEL TOTALLY AWKWARD IN PUBLIC / I CAN'T WAIT UNTIL SOMEONE ELSE DOES IT SO I WILL HAVE COMPETITION.
What's next for A.P.C.?
For London - a new store in Soho! And some major stuff will happen in LA too.
Text Adam Fletcher