For 20 years now, OG concept store Colette Paris has assembled and concocted the best, most creative and most fun phenomena in fashion, music, art and design and released them into the world for all to enjoy. 213 Rue St. Honoré in Paris is where it all swishes together. Wide-eyed teenagers picking up a trinket or magazine (while dreaming about one day getting a limited Be@rbrick) roam the store simultaneously with global megastars on their half-day off in Paris. It’s a culture (I hereby call it “Colette-ure”). The two women driving all things Colette since the store’s bare-walled beginnings in 1997, the lovingly dubbed “Sarah Colette” (Colette’s only buyer) and her fierce mother, the original Colette Rousseaux, have worked tirelessly to create an inimitable empire, on the strength of their keen sense for what’s fresh, different and covetable alone. To pick a favourite moment from twenty years dotted with unique feats is near impossible (a quick homepage keyword search will divulge our highlights throughout the years) but having not one but two KNOTORYUS books being hand-picked to be sold on Colette’s revered racks would be pretty high up on anyone’s list, wouldn’t you agree? One thing’s for sure: a big b-day like this, ça se fête, and that’s exactly what the world and the Colette fam are fixing to do with a glittering line-up of collabs and events. Bon annif, Colette!
THE BEACH (MARCH 21-25)
To celebrate 20 years of Colette, a literally immersive and interactive installation created by New York collaborative art and architecture practice Snarkitecture will take over the Parisian museum Les Arts Décoratifs. It’s called “The Beach” and it consists of an enclosure built from scaffolding, mirrors and panelling that contains a giant sloping ball pit filled with 300.000 recyclable and antimicrobial balls, reminiscent of a summer’s day at the beach. It was originally commissioned by the National Building Museum in Washington in 2015 and now it’s washing over Paris for you to get lost into. It’s textbook Colette: uniting the best in contemporary art with the element of play. I go hard for a ball pit moment; this looks like too much fun.
Tuesday 21 – Saturday 25 March
11 AM – 6 PM (last access at 5.45 PM)
Thursday March 23 open till 9 PM (last access 8.45 PM)
Free admission, no pre-booking
Musée des Arts Décoratifs
107 rue de Rivoli
(Metro Palais Royal or Tuileries, 5 minutes’ walk from Colette)
TWENTY MAGAZINE MASTERCLASSES (MARCH 22-24)
TWENTYMAGAZINE, made by and for 16-25-year-olds, will be hosting their first masterclasses to celebrate twenty years of Colette. The audience will be 100% reserved for kids age 16-25 (sheds a single tear) and speakers will all be over 25. On March 22, the incomparable Jean-Charles de Castelbajac will give an art masterclass. On March 23, Molly Benn and Axelle Tessandier will delight local youths with a Silicon Valley masterclass. Ending the series on March 24, is a fashion masterclass with Lacoste creative director Felipe Oliveira Baptista and Sophie Fontanel of L’Obs. Pretty maje. Each masterclass will be held from 5:30-6:30 PM in Colette’s famous Water Bar. All seats are filled, but the classes will be streamed live from Hotel Radio Paris so no one needs to miss out!
Colette Is TWENTY
March 22 – March 24
5:30 PM – 6:30 PM
Rue St. Honoré 213
PUCKER UP PARIS (MARCH 25)
Gorgeously-maned make-up designer Edward Bess will be launching the 20thanniversary Blue Balm at Colette on March 25 (11 AM – 6:30PM). As a lip balm fiend, this one’s got me excited. It looks Colette blue, but when you apply it (to your lips or cheeks), it turns pink. Science!
Pucker Up Paris
March 24 & March 25
11 AM – 6:30 PM
Rue St. Honoré 213
Those are the official birthday events, but there will also be a special Ikea takeover from March 20 until April 1:
IKEA AT COLETTE (MARCH 20-25)
Ikea Icons by Colette (March 20 – March 25)
In the store’s hallowed windows, Colette will be re-imagining some Ikea classics, such as the iconic FRAKTA shopper.
Ikea Art Event (March 20 – April 1)
12 exclusive posters created by artists for Ikea from all over the world will be sold at Colette first, featuring works by Jean Jullien, Kevin Lyons, Amandine Urruty, Amit Greenberg and Belgium’s very own Hell’O Monsters. More on this soon!
Ikea Bar (March 20 – May 6)
The Water Bar will be transformed by Ikea for 7 weeks and turned into IKEA BAR. Their hachis parmentier will remain too delicious, though.
Colette equals blink-and-sold-out collabs, so naturally a whole batch of limited edition “Colette 20” collaborations and new products have been created for the occasion, with prices ranging from €11 to three grand for a Dina Kamal pinkie ring. A cryptic release by smartphone developer OnePlus for Colette was also teased, to be unveiled on March 15. Hit me up on my Colette-phone!
All anniversary pieces feature or are inspired by the iconic Colette blue and polka dot logo. The biggest stand-out was the exclusive Nike x Colette sneaker, of which only 213 pairs were made and sold (out) in-store last week but there’s plenty more to pass around though. Check out the list of what hasn’t sold out yet and get to ordering because this is it, people:
“Colette 20 – Selected by Pedro ‘Busy P.’ Winter” album (25 EUR). This limited edition compilation selected by Club 75‘s Pedro Winter contains 21 songs featuring Aphex Twin, N*E*R*D*, Soulwax, Beastie Boys, Santigold and more which will only be available on March 20. Like his Club75 co-founder Michael Dupouy – who used to curate the earliest Colette online store called “Sold Out” – Pedro Winter is an integral part of the Colette fabric so be sure to listen to the dedicated 20th anniversary podcast where he talks about creating the anniversary mix, the early days of Colette (Kitsuné’s Gildas Loaëcintroduced him to the crew), becoming friends with Pharrell (“He builds bridges”), being in love with the Dewaele brothers (“They probably dj’ed at more Colette parties than me”), the mad places he’s played at for Colette and surprising Sarah by adding special “Colette c’est chouette” shout-outs from friends (Santigold, Karl Lagerfeld, Johnny Hallyday etc.) and Sarah’s son Woody on the anniversary compilation. So cute!