“French, sexy, sci-fi”. Condensed into three words, this is how Arnaud Valliant and Sébastien Meyer would describe their brand, Coperni. Throught their journey – from Coperni Femme in 2013 to a brief stint at Courrèges and a relaunch of Coperni in 2017 – this DNA has remained consistent. “We went a bit more Parisian on Coperni Femme perhaps and bit more sci-fi at Courrèges.” Now in 2021, Coperni has been elevated for the modern woman with subtle sensuality and more than a dash of futurism.
Arnaud helms the commercial and strategic side of things while Sébastien handles the design. The two rarely clash, and recently said their vows on a secluded island in Greece. “It was love at first sight personally and professionally,” Arnaud said in an interview with American Vogue. “We’ve worked together in a very organic way for over 10 years now! I respect Sébastien’s vision and creativity, and he respects my view on the market and the prices. That’s teamwork for sure!” When disagreements do arise, the dynamic duo rely on logic and extended discussions to come to a definite conclusion. “If he thinks white and I think black, we don’t do grey. We keep having discussions to understand who is in the best situation to come to the most logical conclusion that we both agree with.”
Working through the pandemic together, the two made a decided shift to focus on their core categories, while Sébastien has always sought to innovate according to societal needs, even developing antibacterial fabrics for the brand’s SS21 collection. The designs slowly morphed into something more feminine and sexy for AW21-22. “We think women want to feel hot, to hang out and to have fun again,” Arnaud explained. They thought right.
While technology has always been an integral component of the Coperni brand identity, Sébastien and Arnaud were increasingly drawn to it during the height of the pandemic. “It was fascinating to see the power of technology during these times. We could not have gotten through the pandemic without the tech equipment and access to technology we all have. And it’s a privilege.” The duo have been supporting One Laptop Per Child and Emmaus Connect to bring technology access to underprivileged communities in Nicaragua and France, while also participating in a video campaign with Extended Reality to highlight the challenges of digital and physical realms while also working to bridge the gap between them.
Technology is intrinsically linked with the idea of progress, of science, of finding new ideas and new solutions for the future and our planet. Some people are scared of technology. It’s the opposite for us.
Arnaud Valliant and Sébastien Meyer of Coperni
The future of the fashion industry is one that many have speculated over, especially when it comes to determining trends or the shape of the next new it-bag to hit the scene. But some things are for certain, especially to Arnaud and Sébastien. “The digital race has been amazing these past few years, especially because of COVID-19. We see a more digital and sustainable fashion for the future, for sure.”
This awe of technology and the future is reflected across their designs, where futuristic silhouettes and unique cut-out details are incorporated into surprisingly appropriate apparel for the everyday. “We love that our garments are wearable and that people don’t feel costumed in it. It’s a modern wardrobe for a modern woman.”
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Sébastien is especially partial to heavier tailoring fabrics used to bond and to reinforce. But the pair are increasingly careful of where they source their materials and the mark it will leave on the planet. “We work hard with our teams, manufacturers, suppliers etc. We have worked on some sustainable wools with QR codes to follow each step of fabric making process and we also launched a line of bags comprised entirely from recycled apple leathers. It’s so interesting to see all the research and development in this area of our job.”
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Coperni is a brand beloved by women across the world, from supermodels and influencers to the sartorially inclined bystander. But how would Arnaud and Sébastien describe the emblematic Coperni woman? “The Coperni girl knows how to be minimal, discreet, and chic at a meeting, then sexy and fun for a party or in summer. A bit boyish. Free. Pretty without really knowing it. And smart, cultivated, and curious.”
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CreditLead image: courtesy of Coperni