Could Jean Paul Gaultier’s next guest couturier be recruited from within the Puig fashion family?

According to sources, Paco Rabanne creative director Julien Dossena is in discussions to design a one-off haute couture collection for Jean Paul Gaultier. Both Paris-based fashion houses are owned by the Spanish group Puig.

Gaultier sat front row at Dossena’s fall 2023 fashion show for Paco Rabanne on Wednesday. Gaultier demurred when asked if his presence might signal his choice, noting that he attended primarily to pay respects to the founding couturier, who died last month at age 88.

Contacted by WWD, Gaultier and Puig officials declined all comment on Thursday.

Should Dossena be selected, his collection for Jean Paul Gaultier would be unveiled during the next couture week in Paris, which runs from July 3 to 6.

At the creative helm of Rabanne since 2013, Dossena is prized for his meticulous, yet zesty designs with a futuristic sheen.

Paco Rabanne RTW Fall 2023

Paco Rabanne fall 2023

Giovanni Giannoni/WWD

A graduate of La Cambre in Brussels, Dossena won the 1.2.3 prize at the International Festival of Fashion and Photography in Hyères in 2006. From 2008 to 2012, he was a senior designer in the Balenciaga studio, working closely with former creative director Nicolas Ghesquière.

Haider Ackermann, Balmain’s Olivier Rousteing, Glenn Martens of Y/Project and Diesel, and Chitose Abe of Sacai were the first four talents invited to guest-design a Gaultier couture collection following the founder’s retirement from the runway in 2020.

It’s quickly become a highlight of couture week — and fueled interest in Gaultier’s vast and eclectic oeuvre, achieved over a career spanning 50 years.

The idea of different designers interpreting one couture brand first came to Gaultier in the ’90s when one Paris house “found itself without a designer,” according to Gaultier, who has never named names, though the house in question is believed to be Jean Patou, famously ignited by Christian Lacroix in the ’80s. (Gaultier also worked at Patou earlier in his career.)

Spain’s Puig, while known primarily for its fragrance forte, has been ramping up activities with the fashion houses it owns, which in addition to Paco Rabanne and Jean Paul Gaultier include Nina Ricci, Carolina Herrera and Dries Van Noten.

Its owned fragrance brands include Byredo, Penhaligon’s and L’Artisan Parfumeur. It also operates Charlotte Tilbury and has a derma division. 

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