The End of an Era: Saying Goodbye to Colette

The 20-year-old Paris concept shop will close its doors this December.

Colette Roussaux and her daughter Sarah Andelman shocked the worlds of retail and fashion this summer when they announced that the Paris concept shop Colette will close at the end of the year.

The boutique has wielded immense sway in fashion and pop culture circles for 20 years, serving as a launchpad for new labels and a purveyor of upcoming trends.

While no stranger to the challenges of retail at the moment, Roussaux and her daughter cited motives much more simple for closing the shop–Colette wants to retire.

"Colette Roussaux has reached the time when she would like to take her time; and Colette cannot exist without Colette," reads a statement on the boutique's website.

Many people begged to differ, with the news prompting a flurry of questions about why the mere-fille duo wouldn't rather sell the enterprise so their name could live on.

"I know people think it's crazy that we decided to close rather than sell the name, because it has value, but we knew if someone else ran it, it would not be the same," Andelman told The New York Times.

And so, crazy as it may seem, Colette will exist no more come 2018.

Founded by Roussaux in 1997, Colette became a model for a new kind of retail format that catered to an aesthetic rather than a specific product category, carrying an eclectic array of merchandise ranging from camera film to gowns.

In recent years, the shop has featured exclusive, multi-product collaborations with a range of brands including The Smiley Company, Care Bears, The Secret Life of Pets, Fido Dido, SpongeBob SquarePants, Babar and many others.

A few months remain to enjoy the wonders of Colette before it's gone, so if you happen to find yourself in Paris's First Arrondissement between now and December, be sure to stop by 213 rue Saint-Honoré to say au revoir.

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