Jean-Charles de Castelbajac for Vilebrequin
by Stephen Garner

French luxury resort brand Vilebrequin celebrated the launch of its new collaboration with French couturier Jean-Charles de Castelbajac at The Webster in New York City on Thursday.

For this collection, the designer plunges into the fresh and carefree spirit of the ’70s. Roland Herlory, Vilebrequin CEO, said, “The Vilebrequin woman is characterized by her taste for playfulness, refinement and quality. It’s a difficult line to tread – and one Jean-Charles navigates with remarkable finesse.”

The first thing to catch Jean-Charles de Castelbajac’s eye was the story of seduction at the heart of Vilebrequin. The story of “un homme et une femme” and a pair of swim trunks that are specially designed to get the girl, they set the tone for a collection that’s casual, chic and just a little cheeky.

Jean-Charles de Castelbajac for Vilebrequin

While the collection is mostly women’s pieces like athletic and sexy one-pieces or beautiful sundresses, there are some great men’s items as well. With a range of printed swim shorts, Hawaiian shirts and accessories the men’s items are designed to shamelessly flirt with their female counterparts. One man in particular was the inspiration for the collection’s signature label design: Jean-Charles himself. Always noticing details no one else could, he used to cut the label on his Vilebrequin shorts to leave nothing but ˝Requin˝ – French for shark. Reinterpreted here years later, a bold rainbow sweeps across the first five letters like a brushstroke. After all, there’s no such thing as “Pastel-bajac”.

As de Castelbajac insists: “This collection is about a desire to innovate and strong personality. You can use it to reinvent yourself, freely and simply. Isn’t that the very essence of sportswear chic?”

The 40+ men’s and women’s Jean-Charles de Castelbajac for Vilebrequin collection is now available, with a special pop-up opening at Galeries Lafayette Haussmann in Paris next month.

Jean-Charles de Castelbajac for Vilebrequin