Nick Fouquet has his sights on Europe — Paris, to be exact — for his namesake brand’s next retail destination.
“I grew up in the southwest of France,” said the New York-born, Los Angeles-based designer.
Fluent in French, he’s eyeing the first arrondissement of the capital, though nothing is set.
“I felt a familiarity to that area,” he said of his expansion from his hub in L.A.’s Venice to Aspen, Colo. — where he’s also lived. It’s the same feeling and approach he’s taking as he looks to grow internationally.
“I’m so amazed, from starting in a garage basement…to having a store here and Aspen,” he said of celebrating nearly a decade in the business. His 10-year anniversary is next year. “It’s been an organic, long, slow play, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. Every step of the way, I’ve gotten to learn and grow.”
The designer was in his Venice flagship, where his creations are made in-house, for the launch party of his collaboration with El Paso, Texas-based boots company Lucchese. It was a Western-themed night, bringing out friends of the brand; they sipped on Madre Mezcal cocktails and Sandy Beer while munching on John Que’s Smokeout barbecue in-store and in an outdoor area of the shop — where black-and-white cowboy films were projected.
“Timelessness, craftsmanship quality is the foundation of that brand,” Fouquet said of Lucchese, which has a more than 100-year history in the industry.
The design collaboration, which includes men’s and women’s footwear, hats and accessories, has been more than two years in the making, kicking off a month before the impact of COVID-19 was felt in L.A. Available in his brick-and-mortar stores, as well as specialty retailers, the hats cost $1,425 to $1,575, while the accessories are between $240 to $250 and shoes retail for $895 to $2,995.
“Funnily enough, I was looking at getting into boots,” said Fouquet, who launched his business with hats — attracting a strong celebrity clientele (Lady Gaga, Keith Richards, Pharrell Williams, to name a few) — before unveiling an inaugural stand-alone ready-to-wear collection in January.
“I felt there was a natural symbiosis between hats and boots,” he went on. “They go so well together.”
Looking forward, Fouquet hopes to carry on growing his offerings.
“For me, it’s necessary to continue to create the look from the head down,” he said.