5 Reasons I’m Happy About Peter Copping to ODLR

I’ve yet to read a negative comment about Peter Copping’s new position as creative director at Oscar de la Renta, and I think that’s because it is really good news. Here’s why.

peter copping, nina ricci, oscar de la renta, designer, successor, fashion, new york, catwalk

1. He is a good designer. Peter Copping doesn’t stand out as one of the design greats, the rebels, or the game changers (although he still has a lot to prove.) But his collections for Nina Ricci have been consistently good. And when we consider the amount of crap that gets sent down the runways these days, I think this is a great achievement.

2. He fits the aesthetic. Copping worked well at Nina Ricci because he was able to inject the feminine, pretty handwriting that the brand represents. Oscar de la Renta has a different handwriting, of course, but it’s not that dissimilar. It’s hard to name many designers that could walk into Oscar de la Renta and take over without causing a kerfuffle. And while I think that John Galliano could have also been good for the job on the design side, I think the personality clashes (two big personalities – Oscar and John) would have made for some drama.

peter copping, nina ricci, oscar de la renta, designer, successor, fashion, new york, catwalk

Peter Copping for Nina Ricci. Left: Resort 2015, and right, Spring 2015.

3. It makes me feel good when old school brands whose founders are close to retirement bring in new directors who are not vulgar or scary. I wouldn’t quite say that this keeps me up at night, but I am certainly concerned about the next few years in the fashion world. Who is going to replace some of the greats, that are certainly due to retire in the next decade? Karl Lagerfeld comes to mind, but let’s not forget that Roberto Cavalli and Jean Paul Gaultier aren’t exactly spring chickens. And when we consider what has happened to Yves Saint Laurent and Versace – in the absence of their founders, then there is reason for concern. I love the idea of the founder taking in a successor on his terms and training him for the position so that this new person can take over knowing the history and the ways of the brand. While I’m all for new blood and new ideas, I like when the history of the brand is represented. Properly.

peter copping, nina ricci, oscar de la renta, designer, successor, fashion, new york, catwalk

Peter Copping for Nina Ricci. Left: Fall 2014, and right, Pre Fall 2014.

4. He is quiet. And I don’t mean quiet as a person (although he is very quiet as a person, too) but Copping isn’t the type of designer who is going to have Twitter arguments with editors or get into drunken rages on camera. For me, he represents the ideal personality for this industry: grounded, reflective, hard working, and conducts his personal business in private.

peter copping, nina ricci, oscar de la renta, designer, successor, fashion, new york, catwalk

Peter Copping for Nina Ricci. Left: Fall 2013, and right, Resort 2014.

5. He is a nice and normal guy. Peter was part of the group of people I hung out with when I lived in Paris a long time ago (before the days of euros and Eurostars – I’m old) and I always admired his ability to be so distant from the industry. He always seemed so normal and for me he was the example that it is possible to be a highly successful fashion designer without being crazy or weird. Plus he was always very kind to me, at the time a junior designer trying to find her way in the wild Paris fashion industry. And lastly – he deserves it. He did his time at Louis Vuitton, in the days before Marc Jacobs was sober – and anyone who survived that for years deserves very good things. Congratulations Peter – you deserve it!

Portrait from here and catwalk images from Vogue.com.

  • Irene

    What do you think about Galliano at Margiela?

  • R.S

    I’m so glad for him! I’ve been a fan since he did the between season collections at Vuitton. He’s always known how to infuse classic womanliness with the right amount of comtemporary… Also nice to know that he’s as grounded and pleasant as he seems.

  • alexandrasuhnerisenberg

    I am very excited to see what he will do. I’m also excited to see how he will be “represented” at the brand. Will he be more behind the scenes, to represent what Margiela is about? Or will he be very present like he was at Dior? I’m glad Galliano is back on the scene and I’m excited to see the first collection. I guess you could say I am reserving judgements until then…