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Lacoste’s New Lady

Emma O’Regan-Reidy discusses the new changes at the French fashion house.

Lacoste, the iconic French brand symbolised by a green crocodile, has appointed a new creative director. British designer Louise Trotter is the brand’s first female creative director in its eighty-five-year history. Since her days as a fashion student at Newcastle Polytechnic, Trotter has held an array of international roles within the fashion world. Some of these prestigious positions include Design Director for Whistles, Vice President of womenswear for Gap, Head of Womenswear for Calvin Klein, Designer for Tommy Hilfiger, and Creative Director of Jigsaw.

“As displayed within the past few fashion week cycles, Lacoste has been transitioning their classic look for more contemporary cuts and forms”

Most notably, Trotter is the former creative director of the British label, Joseph. She is credited with widening the brand’s audience and output as evidenced by having successfully debuted the brand’s first womenswear line in 2014 during London Fashion Week. The runway featured a combination of neutral knitwear and cottons, startling in their eye-catching asymmetrical silhouettes. The line demonstrated Trotter’s ability to transform simple colour palettes and fabrics into distinct, expressive pieces for the postmodern woman.

As displayed within the past few fashion week cycles, Lacoste has been transitioning their classic look for more contemporary cuts and forms. Trotter recently conveyed in a statement to Business of Fashion that she is “looking forward to joining a French brand with such a unique heritage.” Her experience in designing everyday pieces and curating a lifestyle accompanying her clothing will translate seamlessly in her direction of Lacoste.

Splitting her time between Paris and London, Trotter resonates with both French and British identities and contexts. She draws unique inspiration from both consumer-driven, revolutionary Great Britain and French classicism. In an interview with MATCHESFASHION.com, Trotter noted that there will always be a necessity for a white shirt or black trousers. Innovation, in her perspective, is produced by small changes in the details and nuances to this uniform, rather than its drastic upheaval. Trotter tends to focus on movement and silhouettes, attempting to create functional yet elegant pieces that can be worn from morning until night. This outlook will contribute greatly to her future at Lacoste, as the French label attempts to maintain its succinct and iconic heritage, while also competing within a contemporary context saturated with sportswear and street style labels.

Trotter’s dual influence from her two cities supplemented by her years of experience in fashion within Europe and North America make her the perfect fit as creative director for this major label. She also is notably one of the only female creative directors currently operating a major French fashion house. Lacoste is not at a loss.