Lacoste: Le Croc Monsieur René Lacoste returns
Paris Fashion Week’s last big debut this season was at Lacoste, where British lady Louise Trotter, fittingly, took her first serve for the house in Le Tennis Club de Paris.
Known as a conceptualist with commercial savvy, Trotter joined Lacoste from Joseph, where she garnered very positive critical reviews and more than respectable sales in a nine-year stint.
Like any new creative director arriving in an historic French institution she delved into the archives, and her show was a highly respectful reinterpretation of the style of the brand’s founder, tennis champion René Lacoste.
"René Lacoste was a naturally elegant gent. So, I believe that Lacoste has to be an elegant sportswear label," insisted Trotter, who succeeded Felipe Oliveira Baptista.
The first 15 looks in a co-ed show were nearly all in sandy beige: gentlemanly double-breasted jackets worn by women, elongated parkas or ribbed sweaters that finished halfway down the thigh. Just like in the founder’s day, the gents wore crisp suits with forgiving pants and classic two-button blazers.
Trotter’s palette was very real: classic beige, tennis court green, pristine white and deep blue. Her volumes were impressively extravagant – multiple shirts morphing into plissé dresses.
A notably stylish figure, René earned the nickname "Le Crocodile" for his tennis bag in the same material, leading him to sew that image onto his soft-collar sport-shirt. He was so successful, most people still call it the Lacoste shirt.
Early versions were actually embroidered rather than sewn on, so Trotter played with that history, sending out a bunch of oversized shirts, where the logo’s threads spooled out down the torso. She did the same with cable tank tops, another idea René popularized.
"Lacoste is more than just a brand. Its crocodile logo is more like an icon, or even rock-star," concluded Trotter in the backstage.
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