We’ve clearly been fanning out over the new direction going on at iconic French brand Cacharel, and with the first pieces arriving at our stores, it looks like there’s no reason for us to stop! To ring in the arrival of the line, we had a chat with Cédric Charlier, the Belgian designer making quiet waves at the house that many still think of as a floral print factory. Cédric divulges his teen horse riding fixation, a disinclination toward nostalgia, and secret August vacation plans. He also created an excellent list of his international travel destinations just for us!
Rory Satran: Where did you grow up?
In provincial Southern Belgium.
RS: How did you dress when you were a teenager? Does your adolescence influence your current style at all?
When I was a teenager I was into riding competitions. This is where my love of perfect clothing comes from, because of my custom-made riding costumes. It was also at this time that I realized how much clothing can influence your attitude and posture. I learned the importance of cut, and how clothes can enhance your body.
: If you didn't live in Paris, where would you live and why?
I would spend the summer in London, for its paradoxical elegance. And winter in Andalusia, because I adore the flowers and the way of life. I also love the Arab-Andalusian culture there.
RS: What did you learn from your time at Lanvin?
I learned to arrive on time, and tidy up my office at night! No, I suppose I mainly learned to respect women.
RS: What about the Cacharel heritage is influential to you?
What heritage? The great commercial success of the 70s, the Sarah Moon photos? That heritage has not really influenced me, although certain images guided me at the very beginning. For me it's more appropriate to look toward the future, instead of looking to the part, to create a contemporary spirit.
RS: Is there something distinctively French about Cacharel?
It might be a "chic désinvolté" (nonchalant chic).
RS: How would you define the modern French "je ne sais quoi?"
Regarding this "petit je ne sais quoi", couldn't it be an elegant spirit?
RS: Can you tell us a story about the creation of the fall 2010 collection?
I had a visual shock in front of a 16th century tapestry, which was the trigger for the collection.
RS: Do you listen to music in the studio? If so, what?
All the time! The Horrors, M83, Popo, Peter Bjorn and John, JS Bach, and much worse! Which I won't mention.
RS: Where are you headed on vacation this August?
The first part will be in a secret place with my friends. The second part in Scotland.
Cedric's worldwide mini travel guide:
My most recent discovery is Soto in NY (357 Sixth Ave.)
The tapas bars in Seville
The Rockery in London (12 Peter's Lane)
The de Belleyme forest in Le Perche
The Darko parties in Belgium
usa vs. france