Wednesday, 4 June 2008

JC de Castelbajac - no I cannot fathom how you pronounce it either

I know, I know. You've seen this skirt before, you've read all about JDDC in fashion magazines from here to eternity, however, how could I ignore the fact that his London flagship store is opening this week on London's fashionable Conduit Street.

For those who do not live in London, Conduit is a great street for designer clobber - Vivienne Westwood, PPQ, Rigby & Peller (you will never wear the wrong size bra again), Issey Miyake all reside here (Luella is a stones throw) and you can get yourself a lovely cocktail at Sketch on your way home.

Inspired by pop art, Castelbajac (58) started his career at Kenzo before launching Sportsmax and then his own eponymous label in 1978. Nu rave has meant that his clothes remain as popular as ever. The brand new shop will stock menswear and womenswear as well as homewear and furniture.

Rufus Wainwright, Sarah Jessica Parker, Mary J Blige and London hip-hop artist MIA have all worn his designs in recent years, so why not you and I??

My favourite story about JCDC is lifted directly from a recent Independent article and goes a bit like this:

In 1997, Pope John Paul II invited Castelbajac to design ecclesiastical robes for 500 bishops and 5,000 priests for a National Youth Day celebration in Paris. Rainbow-striped vestments were inspired by the story of Noah and the ark, though the gay community felt their emblem had been inappropriately hijacked. The Pope's reported response? "There is no copyright on the rainbow."

Jean-Charles de Castelbajac, 50-51 Conduit St, London W1, opens on 5 June.

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