Colette Closing Down on December 20th!
Parisians are bidding farewell to an iconic boutique whose name is synonymous with Paris and French chic. Colette, the store that was named “the trendiest store in the world” by Forbes, is an avant guard boutique that redefined Parisian street style. Colette is closing down on December 20 after two decades of being the favourite of designers, celebrities and the fashion forward crowd, because the owner is retiring and Colette cannot go on without her.
Located on the coveted and highly fashionable Rue Saint Honore, the three-storey store was established in 1997 by Colette Rousseaux and her daughter Sarah Andelman. Back in the 90’s, the French fashion scene was immersed in haute couture and the major fashion houses ruled. Thus, Colette was solely responsible for redefining this whole art de vivre concept by fully embracing high street fashion and elevating it into the level it is at today. Mixing fashion, accessories and food wasn’t yet a readily acceptable concept, but Colette’s strategy was to draw in the most diverse crowd of people possible.It is said that this is the only store that Karl Lagerfeld visited “because they have things no one else has”.
The store’s success came in part from the various collaborations that the store supported such as the ones with Pharell Williams among many others, or the various one-off launches that were held there, as well as its window display that some have likened to a shrine. It is believed that Colette inspired a an array of street style markets and stores, Dover Street Market in London being one of them, and its closing will mark the end of an era.
The week before closing down is almost like a riot where all sorts of clientele are visiting the shop, either to stock up on merchandise carrying the store’s famed blue dots logo such as baseball caps, t-shirts, key chains and such, or to grab what hip remaining pieces are left from Balenciaga and Glossier among others, or to simply come say their goodbyes. Over the years their collaborations have ranged from Hermes and Vespa to Ikea and Vans. However, the brand’s final collaborator, French fashion giant Saint Laurant is said to be taking over the Colette space, and might even hire Colette’s ex staff members.