Charlotte Gainsbourg and denim have history.
“I’ve always been pretty fanatical about denim,” Gainsberg said BAZAAR.com. The award-winning musician, actor and in general style icon he can trace his love of good jeans to his childhood, absorbing the famous gratitude of his iconic parents (Jane Birkin and Serge Gainsbourg) for the material.
Yet after years of collecting, wearing and dressing up vintage denim, Gainsbourg says most couples leave something to be desired. Now, at 50, she has discovered her pairs of holy grail, creating them herself in collaboration with Zara, available now.
“I can never find the right one for me, so this collection means a lot,” Gainsberg said,, call from Paris. “That’s really what I wanted to wear.”
What Gainsbourg wants to wear is a seamless, seamless separation: a dark washed cigarette gin here, an oversized denim jacket there, and sleek leather accessories to round out the look. Her Zara edition is an outfit that looks neat because it’s uncomfortable, she says.
What it isn’t is the huge tariff that is usually found in high-caliber collaborations — and that’s the point. The idea was to create one or two complete images that women could layer as they pleased.
Gainsberg applies the philosophy he uses to choose film and music projects to decide what will lead to the final cut: “I tried to pray to myself,” she says.
It also gave the collection a sense of personal history, in some ways more obvious than others. The coat Gainsbourg remembers her father wore affected corrugated cardboard. The aesthetics of the entire collection, meanwhile, channeled her father’s house to grow.
“He had a lot of things in his house and he put them in a certain way and it looked like a mess, but it was a very well-organized mess,” Gainsbourg explains. This reckless facade plays into her slightly sheer T-shirts and straight-leg jeans. “The look isn’t messy, but it looks like he doesn’t care.”
There is no doubt that this collection is one hundred percent Charlotte Gainsburg. But as our conversation ends, Gainsberg admits that he wants her pieces from Zara to be more than personal.
“The thing I’m really curious about and hope to see is the exact opposite of who I’m wearing these clothes to,” Gainsberg said. “I hope it suits every type of woman, because that’s what I want to see. You want to see a person – you don’t want to see only clothes.”
Shop for selected items from the Charlotte Gainsbourg collection for Zara above and below zara.com.
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