>> Christophe Lemaire, who shows his first Hermes collection in March, says that instead of channeling former Hermes designer Jean Paul Gaultier's runway extravaganzas, he expects to display his collections in a more intimate setting.
The decision reflects his vision for the brand as a whole, he tells WWD: “I think that it’s time to go back to a more honest vision of fashion, and that there is room for a simpler, more pared-down wardrobe that is better suited to everyday life. I have always campaigned to bring quality and, if possible, poetry to everyday life. You don’t change your wardrobe every six months. You build it up over time.”
He added that he is imaging his Hermes to be more in line with Martin Margiela's — who designed for Hermes between 1998 and 2003 — rather than Gaultier's: “I think I will be walking in the footsteps of Margiela more than Gaultier, even if I have a lot of respect for Jean Paul Gaultier and his virtuosity."
Lemaire, who left his position as Lacoste creative director to join Hermes, alluded to tensions with his previous management: “It’s as if the moment had finally arrived for me to show what I’m capable of. For various reasons, I have always lacked either the maturity or the means to develop my own brand, and at Lacoste, I was working under constraints that meant that, even though I think I did a good job, I was never able to unleash my full potential. So I hope to be able to do that at Hermès.” He continued: “I think I succeeded in projecting a certain vision of the brand [at Lacoste]. The problem with a brand is that if the designer has a vision and the management does not have the same vision, or does not understand that vision, then there is obviously a disconnect. So I think that is being addressed, but it was definitely an issue for me.”