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Designer Jacquemus, from micro-bag to massive success

His micro-bag is on the fingers of the biggest celebrities, and he operates by his own timetable — Simon Porte Jacquemus has forged a singular and hugely successful path in the fashion game at the age of just 32. 

The French designer holds his latest show just outside Paris on Monday — again choosing to ignore the usual calendar of fashion events. 

He last showed at Paris Fashion Week in 2020. He has often preferred other locations, such as the dunes of Camargue this summer that drew the likes of Victoria Beckham.

“I dream of one day reaching Jacquemus‘ level of creativity and organising similar shows,” Beckham told Le Monde.

The strategy is working.

“Jacquemus is a phenomenon. His recent collaboration with Nike was one of the biggest successes of the year, as was the opening of his boutique. The rhythm of his collections mirrors his direct relationship with consumers,” said Serge Carreira, luxury specialist at Sciences Po Paris.

The brand has grown 10-fold since before the pandemic, now worth some 200 million euros, according to figures seen by specialist news site Business of Fashion, with a goal of hitting 500 million euros by 2025. 

With several vacancies at the big houses, Jacquemus is highly courted. 

But he so far turned down all offers, arguing that he “already has a big house: Jacquemus”.

The item that has put him on the map is undoubtedly the Chiquito micro-bag — an increasingly common sight on the fingers of the fashion-conscious, right up to the likes of Rihanna and Kim Kardashian. 

“It’s a rather exceptional tour de force,” said Carreira.

He is also a savvy user of social media, sharing his life with his 5 million Instagram followers, including his celeb-packed wedding to PR consultant Marco Maestri this summer.

“He’s a celeb designer, we always know what he’s doing, he’s constantly documenting his daily life,” added Benjamin Simmenauer, a professor at the French Fashion Institute. 

“Brands like to recruit people like that. It creates a connection with the public.”

Originally from Provence, Jacquemus came to Paris in 2009 and held his first fashion week show three years later. This September, he opened his first boutique in the French capital.

He describes his first shows — notable for girls in tuxedos and flip-flops — as “French and naive… made with nothing but very brutal energy”. 

“He brought a smile to fashion, which is rarely seen,” said Loïc Prigent, a fashion filmmaker.

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