Tootlafrance fashion correspondent Marie Marsone takes a look at the launch of the signature collection of Inès de la Fressange x Uniqlo
The leading clothing brand in Japan in terms of sales, the Japanese clothes-manufacturer Uniqlo (a named based on the English-language abbreviation of Unique Clothing) has more than 800 retails outlets in Japan and is undergoing an increasingly significant international rise. It has recently entered the French domestic market with four boutiques in the greater Paris region.
Uniqlo has become a household name very quickly. Its fame beyond the Japanese borders came courtesy of a tradition based on items of quality, classic or refined for some, but always innovative and with sharp style at relatively affordable prices.
Although Uniqlo is still very often seen as a brand associated with basic and cheap in its native Japan, its reputation for quality has gathered momentum in tandem with its expansion abroad, where the quality level of its clothing becomes even more apparent. The Uniqlo message relies on collaborations with well-known models and stylists in an international way in order to develop a more luxurious vision of the brand.
Uniqlo, who had already experimented successfully with a partnership with the French women’s clothing brand Comptoir des Cotonniers, was able to put itself across just as well in the French market as it did in the Japanese one with a signature collection conceived in the context of a collaboration with French style icon and former super-model Inès de la Fressange.Formerly the face of Chanel and muse of Karl Lagerfeld, the model-turned-fashion-designer is the perfect embodiment of the refined and the luxurious Parisian. The collection of this irrepressible icon of the “French touch” was well able to seduce a Japanese clientèle desirous of and attracted by the prestige of the chic à la française as well as shop-aholics.
In terms of trends, the signature collection of Inès de la Fressange is very much in the Spring-Summer 2014 style, with its allures towards chic sportswear and casual chic, reinforced with a natural and informal elegance. As someone big on the fine details, of the precision of the manufacture and of the selection of beautiful material, de la Fressange has quickly found with Naoki Takizawa (artistic director with Uniqlo) a perfect harmony with regard to the care in bringing this collection to light, integrating in the LifeWear range. The designer has created outfits that are conceived in her own image, with a light and spontaneous range that includes everyday items that can be mixed and coordinated to ones liking or easily enhance by accessories. On the jackets and shirts, you can find one charming little detail: the red thread on the button hole – a striking little touch “like the Légion d’Honneur”, as de la Fressange says herself.
Acclaimed by the press, the Inès de la Fressange x Uniqlo collection, which was such a great success in Japan, is available online since the 13th of March 2014 in the Uniqlo site or in shops since the 20th of March 2014.
There’s a great opportunity to discover the new Uniqlo boutique in the Marais district of Paris at the former factory of the Société des Cendres. In this unique architectural setting brimming with history, 820m2 are dedicated to the homme and femme collections of Uniqlo, including that of Inès de la Fressange, starting from the 1st of April.
39 rue des Francs Bourgeois
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