French brand of prêt-à-porter. Behind the name of this famous griffe, which was inspired by a nice little duckling typical of the Camargue, is the activity of the entrepreneur and designer Jean-Louis Bousquet (Nimes, 1932). After his first steps as an apprentice tailor, in 1956 Bousquet moved to Paris, where he opened a small atelier of men’s shirtwear. In 1962 he established his own company in which he manufactured, in addition to women’s and men’s shirts, shirtdresses and other women’s clothing. He was a pioneer of prêt-à-porter. If the styles were rather classic, quite new was the use, first, of crepon (a fabric used up until then for nightgowns) and then, of Art Nouveau cotton, with its famous flowered patterns, two elements which define the style of the house, fresh and romantic, and contributed to its success. The happy idea of using the intimist photographs of Sarah Moon for the advertising campaigns became another characteristic element, constant over time. In the following years, Bousquet invited several young designers who would later become very famous to work with him, including Agnès B., Alaïa, Corinne Cobson, Emmanuelle Khan, Lempicka, and Shimada. His fragrances had great success, starting with the very first, Anaïs Anaïs, launched in 1978 and one of the best sellers, and continuing with Loulou in 1987, Eden in 1994, and Noa in 1998. With a worldwide distribution network, the brand today has several licenses for men’s, women’s, and children’s clothing, for accessories, and for the home.
At the end of the 1900s, Jean Busquet has somewhat neglected his brand in order to devote himself to politics, first as a representative, and then as mayor of Nimes. When he decided to relaunch the brand he gave the task to the English designer team Clements-Ribeiro. He saw one of their Collections on TV and knew that they would have the right spirit for the new Cacharel style.
Launch of the new fragrance Gloria on the European market.
Publication of the book Cacharel. Le Liberty, a tribute by the griffe to the fabric which was at the base of its success.
The continued relaunch of the Cacharel brand, which began in 2000 with a radical change in style. Bousquet now aims at a reorganization of the distribution system and at expansion through new license agreements. The creative restyling by Clements and Ribeiro was a success in those areas where the brand was less well known (England, Asia and the U.S.). On the other hand, there were difficulties in Europe where the memory of the brand’s traditional image was strong. The retail plan for 2004 anticipated new single-brand shops in London, New York, and Paris, and for 2005 in Moscow and Brussels. Together with the reorganization of the points-of-sale, Bousquet continued to expand the licenses. He signed an agreement with Mantero for scarves and ties, and with Carré Royal for bags.
A license agreement with the Eminence group for the distribution in Italy of Cacharel underwear (for men and women).
Inspired by its usual themes and symbols, Cacharel launches a new line of jewellery which, like the previous ones, is rich in romantic touches.
Cacharel changes its top management. Chrystel Abadie Truchet is the new general manager. Emmanuel Augustin becomes the new administrative and financial director. Jean Bosquet, main shareholder and founder of the maison, is appointed chairman of the board of directors.