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Au revoir, Colette!

au revoir colette

A mother and daughter duo that has defined French style for 20 years, Colette, the original concept store, will close its doors this December.

With an unanticipated post on social media, the concept flagship in Paris’s 1st arrondissement stated, "all good things must come to an end. Colette Roussaux has reached the time when she would like to take her time, and Colette cannot exist without Colette.”

One of the first to embrace the hi-low trend when streetwear was still a seedling, the emphatically ambitious pair has made its three-storey, 8,000-square-foot space into a think tank for avant-garde design – marching to the beat of its own drummer with its new-gen approach to the bricks and mortar market. A meeting place for high-end luxury and inner city diversification, Colette has long been considered as the brainchild that created the blueprints for international outposts like New York’s Opening Ceremony and London-based LN-CC, blurring the lines between contemporary cool and couture.

Famed for their irreverent attitude to the status of some of its most iconic collaborators, Colette has always worked on the principle that all brands are born equal.

Not ones to roll out the red carpet for historic couturiers, institutions like Chanel and Balenciaga were always given the same treatment as upcoming contemporaries, creating a selection of products that started at a mere €10 and soared into the thousands.

Working to design a range of statement pieces that celebrated the symbiosis between the kerbside queens and iconic ‘maisons’, the result was a range of striking apparel and accessories that played with the constructs of fashion and function.

The Saint Honoré hub that has helped change the perceptions of luxury, some brands just wouldn’t be the same without a helping hand from the capital’s most stylish vanguards.

One such brand fighting for its name in the Colette hall of fame is Courrèges, a fellow French fashion house founded in 1961 – and that hasn’t changed its style much since then. The upside to its snail-like sartorial pace? Authentic retro with a touch of time capsule cool.

With resale value about to soar as soon as Colette closes its doors, we headed over to their virtual store to snap up some iconic Parisian keepsakes like this Mod-influenced biker jacket with a high shine vinyl coating.

Styled with a pair of wide leg polka dot pants and our Cassie pure white pussy bow blouse, this outfit offers a taste of nostalgia with a fun and playful attitude to design. Working within the confines of this monochromatic palette, we’ve styled this sophisticated threesome with a pair of black leather platform boots and a white pocket book reminiscent of the era.

Equal parts old and new, this genesis between collaboration and creativity makes us miss Colette even more, we urge you – if you haven’t already, to get online and invest in a piece of Parisian history before it’s all gone.

Or better yet, buy a plane ticket and say a fond farewell in person.

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