The house of Kenzo is rumoured to appoint Charaf Tajer of Casablanca to be its new creative director, is the word on the streets in Paris. This would be a major shakeup to the streetwear by bringing it back to the streets. Luxury is again taking over the Luxury Street Style Game.
Kenzo Talks About Appointing Charaf Tajer of Casablanca
Tajer would succeed Felipe Oliveira Baptista, who left the Paris-based house. Kenzo, which is part of the giant French luxury conglomerate LVMH, said at Baptista’s departure that the house had decided not to renew his contract. Technically, Baptista will step down as artistic director after just two years on June 30, 2021.
A publicist who handles Casablanca said: “That is not something I can comment on.”
However, according to well-informed sources, LVMH likes the idea of the high-energy Charaf leading the house, which was founded in 1976 by the late Kenzo Takada.
Charaf launched his fashion brand Casablanca with a Spring/Summer 2019 collection in June 2018. His opening showroom was his mother’s living room in Belleville, the hip and culturally diverse neighbourhood in northern Paris. Now, barely five seasons later, Casablanca retails in over 200 doors, including top-line destination retailers like Browns, United Arrows, Maxfield, Smets and Isetan. The likes of Gigi Hadid, Kendall Jenner and Hailey Bieber have all been seen wearing Casablanca.
Luxury Street Wear
Last year, Charaf’s rapidly growing party-hearty brand staged its first show on the official calendar of the Fédération de la Haute Couture et de la Mode, French fashion’s governing body. A significant recognition of its explosive growth and propulsive style.
Keeping up the momentum, this January, during the Paris menswear season, Charaf staged a show video shot inside the Traveller’s Club, a 19th-century mansion built by a courtesan on the Champs-Élysées. The collection featured a cast of fictive Grand Prix pilots, lovers and glamazons. For women: capes in red checkered flags, saucy black and white checkered cocktails, silk blouses with stocks, or snazzy ’70s pantsuits. Casablanca guys – a diverse cast reflecting contemporary France – donned male versions of the Chanel suit or preppy yellow and pink Ralph Lauren pants and trompe-l’oeil tuxedos. Charaf’s interlocking double-‘C’ logo was everywhere.
Charaf is also a first-rate print specialist – mingling Art Deco gothic, race-car illustrations and retro card designs. No shrinking violet, he even made an appearance in his video, playing the piano while dressed in a red and white harlequin coat.
Charaf Tajer of Casablanca
Casablanca also has a collab sneaker collection with New Balance. Though based in Paris, half of Charaf’s creative team and management live in London. Charaf is expected to maintain his own independent house while at Kenzo.
The choice of Charaf also underlines the general strategy of LVMH to choose designers who generate plenty of social and traditional media heat. The Casablanca brand has 257,000 followers on Instagram.
“Casablanca is very happening right now. So LVMH has gone for buzz. Just like at Vuitton and Dior. The Luxury brands know the future is streetwear especially after the year we have had because of Covid. People want to look fly and dress comfortably. It would be nice to see DJ Khaled in the new Kezo collection by Charaf Tajer of Casablanca.