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Nicolas Di Felice
Nicolas Di FeliceCourtesy of Courrèges

Nicolas de Felice is taking over Jean Paul Gaultier

The Courrèges boss is JPG’s newest guest designer for its upcoming couture show in June

After a handful of triumphant outings with fashion’s brightest stars, today, Jean Paul Gaultier announced that Courrèges’ artistic director Nicolas Di Felice will be its next guest designer. “I find Nicolas to be bold and creative from the beginning of his career,” Gaultier told WWD. “Choosing him aligns perfectly with the idea of seeing what a designer can bring to my style.”

Of his appointment, Di Felice shared that he’s “grateful to get the chance to work with this legendary couture atelier and I cannot wait to dig into the archives.” Since his appointment to artistic director in 2020, the Belgian designer brought about a cultural resurgence of the Courrèges’ name, transforming it from a nostalgia-soaked relic of the 1960s to a cult name on everybody’s lips. But though he’s become known for his inventive but wearable collections, he’s now ready to leave the latter behind, at least for a season. “Even if I work on some more exceptional pieces for my own show, I mostly try to focus on a certain practicality and wearability at Courrèges,” the designer said, “so it’s quite exciting for me to let that go for a bit.”

For Di Felice, letting go will consist of trawling through Gaultier’s extensive, one that’s inspired him from a young age. “I’m from a little village in Belgium,” the designer said. “Jean Paul was the only figure that was famous in my hometown. He was on the television; everybody would use his perfumes. He completely changed fashion and offered it to a wider audience.” Di Felice also added that, “Jean Paul is the perfect mix of French couture and non-conformism [which] echoes a lot with my own trajectory.”

Before taking the helm at Courrèges, Di Felice studied visual arts at La Cambre, Brussels’ prestigious fashion school, before taking a position at Balenciaga under Nicolas Ghesquière in 2008. From there, the designer also worked under Raf Simons at Dior, and then again with Ghesquière at Louis Vuitton, until his appointment at Courrèges in 2020. At Jean Paul Gaultier, Di Felice follows in the footsteps of Chitose Abe, Glenn Martens, Olivier Rousteing, Haider Ackermann, Julien Dossena and Simone Rocha, who have all completed stints as guest couturiers for the house.

Nicolas Di Felice’s Jean Paul Gaultier couture collection will be presented during Paris Couture Week AW24, June 24-27

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