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Carven names Louise Trotter as its creative director

By Danielle Wightman-Stone


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Image: Anders Edström; Louise Trotter, portrait for the Hyères festival on the occasion of her appointment in 2021 as president of the Fashion jury

British fashion designer Louise Trotter, who left Lacoste in January, is joining contemporary French fashion label Carven as its new creative director.

Trotter is described by Carven’s chief executive, Shawna Tao as the “perfect candidate to revive the house”.

“She is a talented designer who has the conviction and know-how to create meaningful clothes with a unique understanding of what luxury and sportswear mean today,” added Tao in a statement on social media. “I believe that her values and openness can lead this 70-year-old fashion house to an exciting new place. The Carven team and I look forward to working together closely with Louise.”

Trotter will present her “new vision” for Carven for spring/summer 2024 with a fashion show during Paris Fashion Week in September.

Commenting on her appointment, Trotter said: “I feel honoured to write a new chapter for Carven: a youthful French house that to me embodies a spirit of freedom, joy and a confident femininity.

“I look forward to respecting Madame Carven’s legacy by making clothes with a new simplicity that are both purposeful and beautiful, whilst being kind to people and our environment.”

Louise Trotter to present debut Carven collection for SS24

Carven was founded by Marie-Louise Carven in 1945, as Paris entered a new era of ready-to-wear post-World War II. She offered clothes that were refined yet carefree and became known for her signature green-and-white stripes.

Affectionately nicknamed the “smallest of the big designers,” Madame Carven retired after 50 years as a couturier and passed away in 2015 at the age of 105.

Carven has undergone a number of revivals and creative directors, including Guillaume Henry, who positioned it as a contemporary brand before moving to Nina Ricci. The brand then appointed Alexis Martial and Adrien Caillaudaud as co-creative directors for the women’s collections and Barnabé Hardy for men’s, before handing over the reins to Serge Ruffieux. In recent years the brand has been without a marquee designer.

Trotter stepped down as creative director at premium sportswear label Lacoste at the beginning of the year after nearly years in the role. At the time, Trotter said she was leaving to “pursue new projects,” while adding that she was “honoured to have served the legacy of René Lacoste, whose sporting values I will keep”.

Before Lacoste, Trotter served as creative director of British luxury label Joseph and was widely credited for being instrumental in the brand’s international expansion and expanding the label’s portfolio to include menswear, shoes, and handbags.

Louise Trotter