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Robert Duffy Thinks of Marc Jacobs as the "Crazy Mother" in the MJ Family

Robert Duffy Thinks of Marc Jacobs as the "Crazy Mother" in the MJ Family


>> Robert Duffy
, Marc Jacobs's business partner, who spoke to Vogue UK this week, says he can't imagine a world in which he didn't work with Jacobs: "We have always worked together, for 27 years, and I don't think we'll ever go our separate ways. We've both done projects separately, of course, when we've been really broke or when we've been fired, but we just know each other so well now."

That longstanding relationship has translated into the Jacobs business as a whole. "We have a very low staff turnover," Duffy explains. "Some people have been here for 25 years . . . We're definitely like a family. I'm the dad and Marc is the crazy mother! It's like 'How is she today?', 'How are her mood swings?'!"

Duffy also revealed his strategy for getting the new Marc Jacobs store locations he really wants: "Partly it happens because I have a very small budget to find new sites, but it means there is an emotional thing behind every location. I think that's the best way to find a new store, I fall in love with the building and then drive the person that has it crazy until we get the lease! That way you already have a vision for the store and you put all your energy in to it. In LA, I wanted this store which was a carpet shop, on the intersection between Melrose Place and Melrose Avenue, and I visited the guy who owned it constantly until — five years later — we finally got it. Then, I found a store I loved on Mount Street in London — which I loved because it was on a corner, with lots of windows, but also because I always stay at the Connaught so I love the street — and went in to see the guy who owned it; it was a carpet shop too. After a while he said, you just bought a store from my brother in LA! It was his brother I'd been driving crazy, so he said 'Ok, you can have it!'"

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