To celebrate the arrival in store of the 3rd collection of the A.P.C. + Carhartt collaboration, Jean Touitou of A.P.C. and Arnaud Faeh of Carhartt hosted a series of events this week at their flagship stores in Paris and London. The day before the London event, we met with the pair at A.P.C. on Paris' rue de Marseille for their very first interview together.
DD: We've heard that you both hate the concept of collaboration and that this project is rather an organic development of your friendship, how did you two met in the first place?
Jean Touitou: Collaborations have became a new gimmick for business, I see some brands that have nothing in common coming up with collaborations only to create news stories for the press. We don't really look for juicy PR stories, I see this project as a way to enter in the right way a new field we’re not necessarily good at. Carhartt is really good at making chinos retailed at a certain price, with a certain touch, which I cannot do...
Arnaud Faeh: …APC brought an aesthetic we love but couldn't get on our own.
Jean Touitou: I cannot remember how we actually met...
Arnaud Faeh: I remember. We met in Stockholm as we both opened shops there on the same day. We kinda do the same things with Carhartt and A.P.C – simple clothes, simple retail – but on different levels and that's why I knew we would get along well.
DD: The collection continues to expand, how do you see it growing? And what about girls?
Jean Touitou: Girls are a very delicate matter, I do not intend to do girls with Carhartt. There could be some ideas but it is a huge process I don't want to start. To me Carhartt really is a men's thing.
Arnaud Faeh: We have different views on this...
Jean Touitou: We have some references to French couture in the A.P.C. x Carhartt collection. There is a jacket called Gabrielle in reference to Gabrielle Chanel who used to put weights with chains at the bottom of the jackets, so they would fall well. We put chains at the bottom of the Gabrielle jacket, the same way she did for Chanel pieces back in the day. I like this combination, there's always some femininity there!
Arnaud Faeh: And girls wear this stuff too, all night long!
DD: What is your favourite piece from this collection?
Arnaud Faeh: The 'underwear t-shirt' Jean made especially for me so I can wear a light t-shirt underneath my shirts in summer.
DD: Tell us about the imagery and your work with Ezra Petronio...
Jean Touitou: Ezra has been a friend for many, many years and four years ago I decided to work with him. I knew he was the best and I feel really protected by his aesthetics. He can understand aesthetics and marketing in every situation and adapt himself to different worlds.
Arnaud Faeh: Also Ezra's assistant is from Naples and I have Italy in my blood. For the Carhartt campaigns we work with Alexander Basile, a very conceptual German artist from Cologne we've been working with for ten years. Working with Jean and Ezra on the fashion imagery is good learning.
Photography Ezra Petronio
The A.P.C. x Carhartt collaboration is available at all A.P.C. stores and selected Carhartt stores from today. Visit Dazed & Confused's Facebook album for images from the London launch