“When we entered a classroom we always tossed our caps on the floor, to free our hands; as soon as we crossed the threshold we would throw them under the bench so hard that they struck the wall and raised a cloud of dust; this was “the way it should be done”.

But the new boy either failed to notice this maneuver or was too shy to perform it himself, for he was still holding his cap on his lap at the end of the prayer. It was a head-gear of composite nature, combining elements of the busby, the lancer cap, the round hat, the otter-skin cap and the cotton nightcap–one of those wretched things whose mute ugliness has great depths of expression, like an idiot’s face. Egg-shaped and stiffened by whalebone, it began with three rounded bands, followed by alternating diamond-shaped patches of velvet and rabbit fur separated by a red stripe, and finally there was a kind of bag terminating in a cardboard-lined polygon covered with complicated braid. A network of gold wire was attached to the top of this polygon by a long, extremely thin cord, forming a kind of tassel. The cap was new; its visor was shiny.” G.F.



Fucking Young!: Hello Marc and Isaac, how did you end up launching a cap and hat brand?

Larose: We met four years ago and immediately clicked. We had the same taste in art, architecture…and clothes, of course. We were both eager to create. I loved Isaac’s last name, so we went for it and started working on the brand. I am a traditionalist and Isaac is more of a modernist. I think you can’t make clothes ignoring the times you live in: behind the word “mode”, there is the word “moderne”. When designing the headwear line (including beanies, berets, caps and – of course – hats), the exercise is still the same: to find the balance, the right balance between classicism and modernism. We want to make long-lasting hats, so quality is of fundamental importance.



FY!: Larose AW16 Collection sees the introduction of the Larose L-shaped hat pin: do you believe in detail?

L: Yes, indeed. We always improve a small detail here and there: the lining, the height of the ribbon, the shape of the brim. In fact, behind what looks like a simple garment, there are dozens of decisions to take. Since the launch of the brand, we have been working with a factory that received the “Entreprise du Patrimoine Vivant” label (which recognises, helps to keep the French craftsmanship alive). We have always been very careful with logos: they can either destroy or enhance a garment. Hat pins were very common, they have something precious about them. You can take them off, if you prefer. I usually wear a Larose L-shaped hat pin on my jacket 😉




FY!: Could you take us through the creation of “The Traveller”?

L: Wearing a hat is making a statement. It changes your whole look, but it also requires care. For instance, you can easily forget it and lose it. Another problem with hats is..space. So, how do you solve that? With a rollable hat! We really like the look of it: the rollable hat has no ribbon, the rollable hat is probably more masculine. It feels…very natural, very nonchalant. The rollable hat looses the “costumey” look a stiff hat can sometimes have. It took us six months to give birth to “The Traveller”.



FY!: Would you let us into your ambitions and aspirations?

L: We honestly don’t want to conquer the world with an “it product”. We just want to last for a long time, improving our collection season after season. We want people to trust us and find our product both beautiful and honest. Our caps and hats are made in France (Caussade, the millinery capital of France). We collaborate with a factory working for Hermès, Saint Laurent and Comme des Garçons. We also take great pride in how well-treated the people who work for us are. Hopefully, as the brand will get bigger, we will not forget that.



FY!: “For any man or woman head”: do you conceive of fashion as weapon against discrimination?

L: No, not really. We can pretend we want to fight discrimination by designing caps and hats, but we don’t have that sort of arrogance or pretention. We do unisex products, that is it. There is just one rule: the bigger the brim is, the more feminine the hat is…but, you know, even that rule can be broken.



FY!: Would you illustrate the concept of style, French style?

L: Regarding menswear, that notion is problematic. We are better at dressing women: Chanel, Saint Laurent, Vuitton. Some say it comes from our history. Our kings were very elegant, very effeminate and sophisticated: they put a lot of effort in the way they dressed, but they ended up having their head cut. Open polo shirt, marine striped sweater, shirt and crewneck sweater. French style? If I had to define it, I would struggle. In the end, I can’t help but think culture, literature is the most…“French thing”: if you read, you look better.



FY!: Could you complete the following sentence: “Elegance is…”? 

L: Elegance is never looking out of place.



FY!: What is today Fucking Young!?

L: Silence. We do not hear silence anymore. It is always buzzing, knocking, ringing… let’s bring silence back!