independent

Friday 18 April 2014

The Garcons are just mad about our Sweeney's hot stuff

FASHION is something that goes in one year and out the other. This maxim clearly doesn't apply to the incomparable Pauric Sweeney.

The London-based Irish designer had a series of meetings two weeks ago in Paris with Rei Kawakubo, designer and founder of Comme des Garcons. Obviously she loved what she heard, because they have commissioned Sweeney to produce a number of pieces for their new space in Dover Street in London.

Around the corner from the Ritz, it is five floors of retail revolution in terms of its designers. And Donegal-born Sweeney will be in there with some of the most innovative names in fashion: Heidi Slimane, Christian Dior's hip menswear designer, among them. "I am very excited about it all," Pauric told me.

"They've asked me to do special pieces - a special collection with a special theme for Dover Street because I am already selling to Harvey Nichols, Liberty, Joseph, Selfridges and Browns."

When you can add Barneys and Saks Fifth Avenue in New York to the long litany of prestigious stores who are begging to stock Pauric's inspired work, it makes it all the more perplexing that our own normally clued-in Brown Thomas in Dublin does not stock him.

Maybe as the late Franco Moschino once quipped - fashion is full of chic.

"I don't know why either," smiled Pauric, adding that Selfridges in London has given his bags (cherished by Madonna and Kate Moss) a display with Chloe. It's only a matter of time before somebody tells BT's genius MD Paul Kelly (who also does a superb job of running Selfridges in the UK) that Sweeney is a favourite of fashion guru Suzy Menkes (not to mention our Constance Harris).

Pauric has been invited to do a special show at Comme des Garcons' flagship show in Toyko in the new year. (Doubtless he'll bring his Japanese girlfriend Maki Okamura and their baby Oscar.) "I'm doing another exhibition in Berlin on January 24, and that will move to Hong Kong in March."

Far East. Far out.

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