All Photo credits: Joan Oliver
I recently had the pleasure of attending a French fashion panel at The French Cultural Center in Back Bay in Boston. The event, French Fashion Comes to Boston, served as the unveiling of the Center’s Behind the Seams Series, which is dedicated to exploring the many facets of the fashion industry.
The fascinating panel discussion was held in a sumptuous room of exquisite dark wood and gorgeous French moulding accented by ornate gold flourishes in the French Cultural Center’s Back Bay mansion on Marlborough Street. Upon arrival, the room was filled to the brim with Boston’s most ardent fashion lovers and Francophiles, and my small team and I were ushered to our seats in the front row marked “RESERVED.” Every person working at the Center was so gracious toward us, and I cannot thank them enough for their kindness and hospitality.
The panel featured Laure Hériard Dubreuil, Founder and President of The Webster, a favorite of the world’s fashion elite and a must-see locale for anyone attending Art Basel or visiting Miami in general) and Tokyo-based designer Julien David who is known for his streetmade a splash when he, after only three fashion shows in Paris, was awarded the prestigious Andam Grand Prix in 2012 and subsequently completed a one-year mentorship with LVMH.
The speakers discussed the challenges they encountered upon entering the fashion world as well as how they navigated and managed to overcome obstacles to become major players in the fashion industry. Michelle Finamore, Curator of Fashion Arts at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, moderated this discussion candidly and gracefully.
After the panel there was a lovely cocktail reception, and I was very glad to have the chance to meet both Laure and Julien, who were incredibly kind and down-to-earth and had a lot to say about how they approach the fashion industry from the curated store side to the designer site, respectively.
This event preceded the grand opening of Laure’s new Webster location, a six-story, 12,000 square feet concept store in the heart of Soho in Manhattan, so she chatted about her excitement about this new venture while also touching on her Parisian roots. Julien spoke on his love of streetwear as well as the particular blend of fashion and culture that he has experience between his native France, and his adoptive home, Japan.
In the room where the cocktail reception was held, a gallery of backstage pictures from Julien’s fashion shows were on display, as were exclusive outfits from his upcoming collection.
If you or anyone you know loves fashion and all things French, remember to share this post via the social share buttons below and keep on the lookout for the French Cultural Center of Boston’s new Behind the Seams Series. I love the new direction that the Center is taking with Barbara Bouquegneau at the helm. She struck me as a remarkably intelligent woman with the right vision for the future of one of Boston’s most precious cultural and intellectual gems, The French Cultural Center.
Give the gift of French language and culture this holiday season! My husband Dan and I are members and love the community of intellectuals, art enthusiasts, and Francophiles that we meet at the Cultural Center’s events. I actually first started learning French at the French Cultural Center and am a fluent French speaker to this day. Wouldn’t French language lessons or a membership to the French Cultural Center be the ideal gift this year?