It is safe to say that one is never short of valid excuses to plan a trip to a city like Paris. However, if we were to find ourselves running out of reasons, a visit to one of the recently refurbished De Fursac menswear stores would suffice. Although De Fursac has been around for nearly four decades and has garnered an important position in French men’s sartorial stakes, its admirable creative expansion over the last couple of years has put this menswear brand on the global style radar.
Created in 1973 by the Laufer Brothers as ‘Monsieur De Fursac’, the company grew considerably in the 1980s owing to ambitious advertising campaigns based on the slogan ‘La Griffe de L’homme’ (or “The Label of Man”). In 1990, it was bought by Edmond Cohen, and a couple of years later the first Monsieur De Fursac store opened in Paris on the Rue de Richelieu, in the second arrondissement. A decade later, Cohen was instrumental in revitalising the company’s image by eliminating ‘Monsieur’ from its title and by establishing partnerships with prestigious Italian fabric makers, such as Loro Piana, Zignone, TG di Fabio, Larus Miani, Bacci and Monti. Over the years, these companies became increasingly allied to De Fursac by producing exclusive creations from their most beautiful fabrics.
By 2005, De Fursac surrendered to the inexorable power of celebrity culture and the world of sports by becoming the official dresser of the French Basketball Federation. A year later, the professional basketball players Tony Parker and Boris Diaw become the brand’s official international ambassadors and, in the same year, De Fursac designed the suit that Parker wore when he married actress Eva Longoria, as well as the attire for their witnesses, including football player Thierry Henry.
2009 marked a year of dramatic change for the brand as it recruited Guillaume Lemiel to provide artistic direction to its collections. A graduate of the applied arts school Duperré in Paris, Lemiel had worked at Balenciaga Homme before launching his own collection, known for its stylish dandy-esque cuts inspired by designs of the 1950s and by mythical film icons such as Steve McQueen and Paul Newman.
As of early 2012, De Fursac has expanded to own three own-branded shops in Paris. In addition, the brand is available in ten multi-brand stores throughout France in Paris, Lyon, Lille, Rouen, and Strasbourg. Under the helm of Lemiel, and with the renowned Atelier Franck Durand providing artistic direction to the campaign, De Fursac has launched another elegant collection of very stylish and wearable garments for Spring/Summer 2012. This includes a seductive palette of shades of blue, watermelon, pink, and dark orange, Prince of Wales checks, and garments such as elegant evening wear, incredibly tailored cigarette trousers, and suits with short jackets that flatter the shapes of the male body.
As the persistent rumours that De Fursac will expand abroad still refuse to become true, when in Paris, a visit to one of the brand’s shops is unquestionably a must.