L'étiquette (English)



“It was Jean-René who wanted us to open a shop in Japan after we’d been around for a few years. Sure, it was a big chance for the brand, but my daughter was only nine months old, so it wasn’t the right time. I remember the journey over there took forever. I also vividly recall driving all the way across Tokyo at 9 o’clock one morning for an interview at a newspaper office. It took us two hours. We sat down, and the journalist asked me: “How do you manage to balance your work life and being a mother?” I burst into tears and told Jean-René: “We’re leaving!” Then, when I grabbed a tissue to blow my nose, it turned out to be a coffee filter! [Laughs] It was a total fiasco, that meeting. I was exhausted, and we left. My first trip to export the brand to Japan… But after a bad start, things turned out really well over there. The Japanese instantly took to agnès b., they liked the simplicity of the clothes, the fact that they don’t date… We still do good business in Japan. We have almost 200 stores across the country and employ hundreds of staff – it’s a crucial country for us. When I go there, I’m a bit of a star. I stay holed up in a hotel with people knocking on my door every quarter of an hour for an interview. Last time, there was a bit of excitement because we were awakened by an earthquake. The whole room was shaking. I felt like I was in a plane going through turbulence. A few minutes later, all the Japanese were sitting down at breakfast as if nothing had happened. It measured six and a half on the Richter scale!”

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