L’Exception, the Paris-based online retailer dedicated to French labels, is launching a direct-toconsumer private label men’s line.The idea, said founder Régis Pennel, is not to go into competition with the brands they sell but to present a complementary line of basics. The preppy line includes parkas, roll necks in merino wool, old-school cardigans and flannel shirts, with prices going from 35 euros for a T-shirt to 120 euros for a denim jacket.
Designing the line is Rémi de Laquintane, founder of Laquintane and cofounder of Parisian men’s wear label Éditions MR, both of which are carried by L’Exception. Lewis Lazar and Christopher Moore of French group the
Oracle Sisters, which channels a Seventies vibe, are cited as the muses of the collection.
Launching on Oct. 11, the line will be sold exclusively on the retailer’s site and in a dedicated corner at its brick-and-mortar store in the Forum des Halles shopping center, with regular drops and a focus on European materials and production. The details of the supply chain will be shared on the site.
Pennel described the line as being very Parisian in style — “classic with a twist.”
“We thought more about core products for our customers. We are going to find creative products — prints, patterns, colors — at brands like AMI and Kenzo, but in the end, the customer wants to buy white shirts, blue shirts, chinos and coats in good cuts and materials,” he said. Other brands stocked by the retailer include North Hill, National Standard, Olow and A.P.C.
A survey recently conducted by L’Exception revealed that 90 percent of customers of the site would be open to buying product under the retailer’s banner, Pennel said. “We’re starting this brand after seven years of business, they trust what we sell and our style,” he said, adding that men’s is seeing a stronger growth than women’s. He expects to generate around 6 million euros in sales this year.
Pennel said he has big ambitions for the private label line. “This by far represents our biggest budget for the season,” he quipped. — KATYA FOREMAN
Lewis Lazar and Christopher Moorein looks from the L’Exception line.