PARIS — Five years after launching his brand, Damir Doma has opened his first flagship situated on an intimate courtyard off of the Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré.
Framed by Burberry, Brunello Cucinelli and Comme des Garçons boutiques, the three-story site, which is accessible by a set of stone steps, measures about 2,000 square feet.
“The idea was to give the feel of a Parisian building that has been gutted,” said architect Rodney Eggleston, who juxtaposed “typically Parisian” details such as sections of aged parquet flooring, with industrial elements — exposed concrete walls, suspended brass clothing rails and black, burnished plaster walls.
Striking features include a ceiling of aged mirrored squares, each with silver partially eroded away at the back to allow light to pass through, as well as a stacked travertine marble platform running along one wall, which serves as a table for bags, shoes, jewelry and knitwear. The ground floor has a roomy changing room behind a long leather curtain, and a small seating area, both near the cash wrap.
A monumental staircase made from artfully stacked slabs of travertine marble connects the levels.
“The idea was to try to translate some of the main elements of my work into the store’s design, working with oppositions; working with precious things, but at the same time being very raw and pure,” Doma said during an interview at the store in the run-up to the opening.
The project came around a little faster than expected, he said. “We were planning to open a store in the near future, but didn’t expect it to happen this quickly. The location came up and we had to jump on it. It’s great for us to be next to Comme des Garçons, I think we share a lot of clients and a similar philosophy,” he said.
Men’s and women’s clothing is presented together on the store’s first and second floors, along with pieces from the brand’s diffusion line, Silent by Damir Doma.
Doma said the top floor would be used as a private space for clients, and also to showcase special collaborations exclusive to the store. An eyewear line with Mykita is planned for September, for instance. The designer will also create special garments for the boutique and is working on a scent project with Givaudan’s Antoine Maisondieu.
Doma said he wants the store to serve as a template for potential retail partners. He hopes to open two stores in Asia next year.
The Damir Doma brand is jointly owned by Doma and Paper Rain SA, a Paris-based company that bills itself as an incubator and management company specializing in luxury fashion and design.
In June 2011, Paper Rain appointed former longtime LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton executive James Greenfield as managing director of its Paris-based luxury and accessories division, in charge of the Damir Doma as well as the company’s Silent and Côte & Ciel brands. Paper Rain also appointed Carlo Zollo as commercial director for Doma’s men’s and women’s ready-to-wear collections.
“It was a big boost for us,” said Doma. “We are growing from a design company into a real brand, and it’s not easy for me to manage all this. Designing is one thing, but designing a company is another. I am learning so much about management from James.”
Doma, 31, was born in Croatia and grew up in Germany. His mother, Zdenka Doma, owns a textile factory near Lake Chiemsee in southern Germany and develops most of the brand’s woven samples. The collection is produced in Italy. Doma’s sister, Dorotea, designs the brand’s jewelry.
Declining to disclose sales figures, Doma said men’s, with which he started out, is still slightly stronger, though women’s, introduced for fall 2010, is quickly catching up.
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast