Maison Chanel recently opened the doors of its brand new complex of ateliers located just outside Paris. This project originates from 1985 and is the result of an increase in exports of the fashion luxury sector in France. Envisioned to support and preserve the traditional French craftsmanship, “Le19M” hosts 11 Maisons d’art and an embroidery school.
On January 20th, 2022, less than a week before presenting its highly anticipated Spring/Summer 2022 show during Haute Couture Week, the traditional French Maison Chanel inaugurated its first-ever atelier complex known as “le19M“. Located between Paris’ 19th arrondissement and the city’s northern suburban area of Aubervilliers, this incredibly huge building has 25,500 square meters divided into over 7 floors, including 2 below-ground floors. For this grand opening, Bruno Pavlovsky, President of Chanel SAS and President of “le19M”, was joined by Emmanuel Macron, President of France, and his wife Brigitte Macron.
This brand new Chanel atelier complex, designed by architect Rudy Ricciotti, is the result of a process initiated by the Maison in 1985, with the acquisition of ateliers and factories. “Le19M” is a working space dedicated to the fashion Métiers d’art that welcomes 11 Maisons d’art and an embroidery school where accessory suppliers create shoes, embroideries, and other handmade crafts. Craft houses in the building include jewelry maker Goossens, lingerie label Eres, and interior decorating brand Lesage Intérieurs. Today, the complex receives more than 600 people among artisans, employees, and apprentices, and it also hosts an exhibition space open to the public.
In Bruno’s words, “transmission is at the heart of le19M’s mission: contributing to the continuation of a unique Parisian and French heritage, inspired by Haute Couture, but also to promote these exceptional crafts”. Along with the building’s inauguration, Chanel announced its Mode’s commitment to recruit and train, each year for the next 3 years, over 1,200 young people aged under 30-years-old, as part of the “1 young person, 1 solution” agreement. About “le19M”, Hubert Barrère, Artistic Director of Maison Lesage, a specialist in lacework, said, “when we need to work with, say the jeweler Goossens, we won’t have to cross all of Paris for that, we knock on the door next door and we’re set”. He added that “this is an extraordinary gain for the creativity and synergies”.
This initiative supporting Chanel’s specialty workshops represents a great first step to perpetuating craft traditions by training young French talents and is crucial to ensure the future of a sector absolutely precious to France’s economy. According to estimates released by the Presidential Office, out of 600,000 workers in the fashion industry, around 130,000 are employed in crafts-related jobs.
The introduction of “le19M” is a clear sign pointing towards the recent boom in the French luxury sector, mostly due to the current Covid-19 pandemic. After long months of lockdowns, buyers from all over the world are eager to spend their fortunes on high-end clothes and accessories. That perfectly explains why the fashion luxury sector has become one of France’s leading exporters.
Published by HOLR Magazine.