JOHNNY COCA & SARTORIAL STYLE
On Sunday 21st February at 4pm, the new creative director for Mulberry made his London Fashion Week debut. Not only being his first mainline collection, it was also Mulberry’s first show in over thirty months.
“I’m not nervous,” Mr. Coca said, resplendent in a black and white kilt, oversize knit, large silver hoops and spectacles. “I don’t get nervous. It’s important that I stay calm, both for me and my team.”
The hugely talented designer joined the luxury brand in July 2015 replacing designer Emma Hill who previously left two years prior to Coca’s arrival, meaning Mulberry were without a creative director. Joining Mulberry from french leather luxury brand Céline made Coca perfect for the role.
His experience with leather will sit just perfectly with Mulberry, a brand who’s leather handbags are their primary métier. From Emma Hill’s departure in the brand, along came the departure of CEO Bruno Guillon meaning that profit sales were down and the company was undoubtedly struggling. This being the case, former CEO Godfrey Davis took his chances in helping the company get back on track until such new replacements were assigned.
“Currently he works with a very small team, with only around five people under him between design and product development, so that aspect of his arrival at Mulberry – where around 15 to 20 people will report into him directly – will be a big change. He’s quiet and creative; very switched on, but not a big personality. Mulberry don’t expect him to take over all aspects of design and branding, and have actually hired an image director to oversee creative developments – stores, packaging, markets – other than product. I think they will want to allow him to grow and develop within his own comfort zone, which is accessories.” – Lewis Alexander (founder of Lewis Alexander Executive Search)
Speaking in a previous statement, Davis commented on the appointment of Coca, saying “he has a wealth of international luxury and fashion experience that will help us bring new energy and innovation to Mulberry.”
Taking on the new role for Mulberry will see him responsible for all of Mulberry’s collections, including ready-to-wear men/womens. London Fashion Week will showcase his new design handbag ‘The Clifton‘, a classic over the shoulder handbag with a featured gold chain strap. Each model is also set to be wearing a featured hoop earring to mark the new Creative Director’s appointment.
“To me, Britishness is an attitude,” he said in a new video from Mulberry unveilling the collection ahead of LFW. “Something very individual that is not about where you come from.”
Article: Poppy Lowdon
Photography: Vogue / Telegraph / Pintrest