Though belgian by birth and creative education, it would be reductive to confine Jean-Paul Lespagnard to one single nation.
Since his kick off awards at the international fashion festival of Hyeres in 2008, Jean-Paul presented his FASHION collections in Paris official calendar while working in a mix media universe where clothing, object and INTERIOR DESIGN go hand-in-hand.
Thanks to his multiple projects, Jean-Paul have the great chance to visit different continents and work in prestigious places of creation. His interest in local cultures and know-how leads him to discover new neigbourhoods, markets, crafters and producers.
It is in this discovery process, in inter-cultural and social exchange and in the mix of different mediums that the basis of its creation finds its sources and its resources.
In 2017, right after the opening of his monographic exhibition at brussels fashion museum, Jean-Paul wrote a manifesto about the evolution of craft and daily savoir-faire in the contemporary world. This statement led to the opening of the extra-ordinaire store, mixing his fashion and OBJECT DESIGN in the heart of brussels downtown.
Since 2017, Jean-Paul has gradually evolved into nomadism. He has reduced his living space and left his creative studio for a temporary building with the ambition of releasing a large part of his archives and settle in a more human scaled environment. Brussels, capital of europe remains the center of creation by Jean-Paul Lespagnard.
Fascinated by contemporary performance art, he is also a long term COSTUMES collaborator of renowned choreographers such as Damien Jalet, Boris Charmatz or Meg Stuart to name a few.
Jean-Paul is currently working on a new project called EXTRA LUGGAGE. A physical box that will present his multi-creative life via a documentary series and a nomadic fashion boutique.
There are no defined boundaries of any sort for COLLABORATIONS in Jean-Paul work ethic.
Welcome to Jean-Paul Lespagnard world.
Jean-Paul combines fashion with a deep interest in art and popular culture in all shapes and forms. His creations are highly detailed products of his over-flowing imagination. He eloquently communicates his optimistic universe where classical attire is presented with a playful wink. Jean-Paul Lespagnard is a brand in movement. It represents creativity, joie de vivre, an open mind and multi-sensory experiences. Neither age nor size or gender are asked to feel comfortable in his clothes.
1. I Could Be Yours.
2. Cheese On Fleek.
1. Heeled clogs / Wood
For his first Paris presentation, Jean-Paul developed a heeled wooden shoe with a clog-maker based in Alsace, France. Visually surprising yet comfortable, these shoes got produced in a limited edition of 50 pairs.
2. Green Skirt Silhouette / Technical fabric
Presented at Nissim De Camondo Museum, this collection was a mix between two Mexican subcultures: the Mennonite and the Cholombianos. Creating a hybrid between these two traditions, the pieces were cut to transform between sizes, from XS to 5XL, crafted in textiles that were also developed by Jean-Paul and his team.
4. From B To A.
3. Detail of a silhouette / Technical fabric
Coordinated skirt and jacket. The fabric is a technical development by Jean-Paul Lespagnard, first graphically printed on a flat surface, then re-woven with a 3D effect.
4. Hat / Straw and cotton thread
Specially designed for its Paris show, The F.B.T.A. straw hat is a combination of 2 opposite influences: African ceremonial wear and the Unesco Masterpiece of Heritage of Humanity Carnival of Binche in Belgium. The collection is a statement about exotic traditions in the contemporary world.
5. Shanghai Fashion Week.
6. Le Savoir-Faire.
7. Till We Drop.
5. Image caption from Shanghai fashion week show
Jean-Paul Lespagnard has taken part in many fashion events around the world: China, Japan, Korea, Spain, France, Belgium, Switzerland and India, among others.
6. Butcher shop season campaign
Le Savoir-Faire collection highlights the origin of materials and how things are made. Drawing an off-beat parallel between fashion and food, Jean-Paul juxtaposed two daily savoir-faires in a fusion of the two arts of butchery and couture, with minute details like glass beaded sausages. This collection was the first of a two-season collaboration with trendy ugly-shoes brand Z-Coil.
7. Jewellery / Metal, crystals & recycled PVC
This brooch from the Till We Drop collection instantly became a classic in Jean-Paul Lespagnard’s permanent collection. Playing with Italian luxry production and pop culture, this jewel mixes Swarovski crystals with the signature Jean-Paul Lespagnard PVC branding.
8. Rocky Mountain.
9. Cheese On Fleek.
10. Le Savoir-Faire.
11. I Could Be Yours.
8. Red hooker soles with climbing ropes
Jean-Paul takes his former muse Jacqueline on a high-altitude voyage, to meet the man of her dream, Cliffhanger superhero Sylvester Stallone. In this crafted pair of shoes, Jean-Paul plays with cliché materials, connected to sexual fantasy and rock climbing.
9. Image caption from Paris fashion week show
Oversized garments like coats, jackets and parkas are a big part of the JPL bestsellers. The brand is known for its easy cuts, graphic patterns, fabric developments and cheeky but practical accessories.
10. Bejewelled iPhone case / Recycled PVC and Crystals
A typical JPL accessory, this phone case, handcrafted in sheltered workshops in Belgium, is a bestseller in the Japanese, Korean and Chinese market.
11. Image caption from Paris fashion show
Visionary and progressive, the no-seating show setting was a shock for most of the fashion journalists who came to the presentation.
Jean-Paul has always been keen to create an immersive universe. interior design happened organically and became part of his quiver. Reflective of social dynamics, his concepts are multi-sensory. as Jean-Paul likes to say, “I would think even up to the smell of the washroom soap”. In 2019, he designed his Extra-Ordinaire boutique, which won him the Design September Commerce Design Award 2020. On April 6, 2023, Jean-Paul will inaugurate his biggest interior design project to date. Contracted by Befimmo, he will sign a 5,000 M2 co-working space opposite Calatrava’s train station in Liege.
12. Jean-Paul Lespagnard Studio at Wild Gallery Brussels,
13. Jean-Paul Lespagnard Studio at Wild Gallery Brussels
of the multi-functional shelf/workstation.
of the multi-functional pattern-making/moodboard station.
For the economy of functionality, Jean-Paul Lespagnard used raw materials such as galvanized metal, MDF and cotton canvas to design his creative studio. Interchangeable at will, this 300 sq/m platform offers a multitude of settings that adapt to the different times of creation and production during his projects.
14. Extra-Ordinaire shop Brussels
15. Extra-Ordinaire shop Brussels
14. “Fake” entrance view of the store
For this project, situated in the historical city centre of Brussels, Jean-Paul played with an «outside / inside» feeling. First, he changed the street facade to a giant window that fully opens during operating hours. This trick created the impression that the store was at the end of a street market. Next, Jean-Paul got the same producer who had crafted the pavements used in the neighbourhood streets to connect the first part of the store to the outside even more.
15. Backside view of the Store
With the desire to bring his creative studio energy to the public, Jean-Paul kept the raw aspect of it. Concrete ceiling, light-coloured walls, polished concrete on the floor and the same multi-functional shelves. He then added large mirror surfaces to reflect the colours of the goods and the people visiting the space.
16. Silversquare Liege.
17. Silversquare Liege.
16. Reception hall
17. Working alcove
The Silversquare Co-working Space is situated between the Guillemin train station and the Boverie Contemporary Museum of Art. In this environment, Jean-Paul created a 5000sq/m design inspired by transport, import/export, and exchanging of ideas and knowledge. Many crafters (locals and internationals) were involved in the project.
A multi-disciplinary, prolific mind, Jean-Paul Lespagnard sees object design as the connection line between his creative dots. His textile knowledge and mastery in international Savoir-Faire allow Jean-Paul to bridge gaps between fashion accessory and furniture, or between more exclusive crafted art pieces and decorative good productions.
18. En Y.
18. Reading chair / Metal and wood
For his first collaboration with J&J, the Brussels-based metal workshop, Jean-Paul was inspired by the Marseillaise origins of its owner, Jean Angelat. This reading chair is covered with a readymade bead seating pad, which is very popular in family cars in the South of France.
19. Lantern bag / Recycled PVC and crystals
For the maatjes collection, Jean-Paul Lespagnard imagined a woman obsessed with motocross. Who gets dressed to join her lover as he returns from fishing for a type of herring called maatjes. This formed the back story for the design of a contemporary lantern bag.
20. The Waffle.
21. The Merode.
22. Angele & Waffle.
20. Paperweight / Recycled Aluminium
with brass plating.
21. Decorative set proposal
for corporate meeting rooms at Hotel de Merode, Brussels.
from Angele’s Instagram.
This quirky yet iconic object is moulded using a real Liège waffle. Jean-Paul took a real waffle from Belgium to India to mould this paperweight. Using the centuries-old sand-casting technique, each paperweight is slightly different and thus unique.
24. Silversquare Liege.
23. Eccentric mirror / Recycled glass
These pieces are made with a derivation of the mouth-blown glass bowl process. Jean-Paul stopped the blowing in the middle of the crafting process, resulting in free-organic shapes. After that, a mirroring technique was added as a final touch.
24. Tableware collection in ceramic, terracotta and glass
This tableware collection is inspired by traditional techniques, glazing crafts and recycled glass production in Mexico. Like an unstudied harmony in one’s grandmother’s cupboard, the pieces will get their own patina through multiple uses.
25. Floor cushion workshop
These handcrafted floor cushions have different fabrics on each side, making them unique. For a surprising melange, Jean-Paul created an algorithm process to mix patterns together. He then selects the combinations he likes out of this computer program.
26. Multi-purpose box / PVC, wood and cotton
This object can be seen as the starting point, as well as the resume of the Silversquare project. The multi-purpose box mixes re-used transport boxes from Mexico, laser-cut wood covers from Belgium and cushions from India. It combines three continents in one multi-functional object (locker, stool, side table, stepladder...).
27. Meeting table / Wood inlay
Jean-Paul worked with the decorative technique of wood inlay to create this handcrafted masterpiece. Developed in Mysore, India, this piece includes processes from different decades of marquetry, highlighting its evolution through the arrival of new techniques, materials and tools.
Jean-paul has worked with performance venues like Volksbhune Berlin, Palacio de Bellas Artes Mexico and GöteborgsOperan Gothenburg, and also for festival openings like Zurich Theaterspektakel, which he recently opened with his 14th collaboration with Meg Stuart. Very much involved in the development process, Jean-Paul spends a lot of time in rehearsal rooms with his collaborators, in order to create scenes where costumes and movements elevate a mood into a fullfledged entity.
28-29. Skid. Gotehnburg. 2017
28-29. Image caption from a performance at Gothenburg Opera
The smash hit Skid, with a dance floor tilted at 34°, challenges the dancers beyond gravity. The dancers are set in motion by gravity force as the slope enhances chain reactions of stunning, powerful and moving events.
30. Skid. Gotehnburg.
31. Morning Star Dark Valley. Papua.
32. VR_I. Geneva.
30. Costume research / upcycled stocking
First study for costumes creation.
31. Image caption from a performance during Europalia Indonesia
«Shifting perceptions of human voices and dances from Papua» is the starting point of Darlane Litaay’s creation. Traditionally in Papua, voice and movement always happen together; singing and dancing cannot be separated. In this work, we propose to experience traditional Papuan costumes, songs and dances as deconstructed entities, pointing at the intrinsic interconnectedness between these elements as different forms of communication.
32. Image caption from a virtual performance at Biennale Di Venezia
VR_I combine dance with cuttingedge VR technology. Immersed in a virtual environment and full-body avatars both designed by Jean-Paul Lespagnard, and tracked by a motion capture system, participants can see their bodies evolving in a fantastic world where giants and macro people co-exist. Equipped with VR headsets and an onboard computer, they are free to move and interact with other users.
33. Omphalos. Mexico City.
34. Omphalos. Mexico City.
33-34. Image caption from a performance at Bellas Artes Mexico
Created in Mexico City with the national dance company Ceprodac, Omphalos explores forgotten old European and indigenous myths about the origins of Mexico. Working these up into a reflection on being human and the situatedness of human life in the cosmos.
35. Kites. Gothenburg.
36. Omphalos. Mexico City.
37. Who’s Next. Paris.
35. Image caption from a performance at Gotheborg Opera
With unstoppable, relentless fluidity and joyful emergency, Kites pull its audience into a vortex of complex patterns and movements at the crossroad between cutting sharp precision and ecstatic abandon. The piece is a highly physical reflection of life’s fleeting yet powerful nature, hanging on a thread like a kite surfing unpredictable currents. Air was the main inspiration for this performance.
36. Costume research
fabrics and terracotta First study for costumes creation
37. Image caption from a performance during the opening party
To celebrate 25 years of Who’s Next, Jean-Paul Lespagnard designed the costumes for a spectacular artistic performance choreographed by Virgine Toc. The show was accompanied by guitarist Raoul Chichin as well as the voice of Julie Clergerie.
38. 10.000 Gestes. Manchester.
39. Safari Disco Club. Paris.
38. Image caption from a performance at Manchester International Festival
In its glowing review, British newspaper The Guardian called the performance «a thrilling blizzard of movement», but it’s a performance that could just as well be described as antichoreography. When the dancers meet on the floor, they don’t mirror each other’s gestures or look for a common theme. It’s a cacophony of dance and costumes, with 25 dancers all approaching movement from different angles.
39. YELLE Album cover
A long-time collaborator of French pop sensation YELLE, Jean-Paul designed a collection of costumes for this album and live performances. This album and its visuals soon became iconic in French pop culture.
40. Waterwork. Zurich.
41. Quantum. Geneva.
40. Image caption from a performance at TheaterSpektakel
Meg Stuart is known for her uncompromising artistic research, which explores our physical and imaginative limitations. She has invited Jean-Paul Lespagnard to collaborate on this ambitious project. In the shallow waters, they investigate the shore as a transition between nature and civilization, as well as the interactions between liquids and bodies, natural elements and human movement.
41. Image caption from a performance at CERN
Quantum is a 50-minute dance with no narrative. It performed in Bangalore, Delhi, Chandigarh, and other international performance venues. Dancers start by shaking like particles and then keep moving around, totally separated and yet strangely linked. Sometimes the dancers are far away from each other but seem to mirror each persona mysteriously thanks to the same outfits repetition designed by Jean-Paul Lespagnard.
Travelling the globe through his different projects, Jean-Paul naturally thought of a container to collect the essence of his creations. In this concept, he travels with an extra luggage that contains his inspirations and the result of his previous experiences. Through the physicality of a trunk, Jean-Paul shares his creative life via a documentary series, based on the life of different creations filling the box and a nomadic shop that can set up anywhere and sell its goods. The shop exists to revitalise content for the container and the series. This space allows the brand to meet its customers and creates communication and sales, both physical and online. The plan is to go where fans and buyers are : meeting them face-to-face or via screens.
42. Artistic research
What interests Jean-Paul is contact with people, personal exchanges and expertise. Jean-Paul never approaches an artisan or a culture with a specific idea. What interests him is observing how they work and live and adapting his requests to that. The intersection of their story and Jean-Paul’s background gives the creation its meaning.
45. Galeries Lafayettes Paris.
43. Early 20th-century statue of a street trader / Silver
Jean-Paul considers this statue found in Barcelona’s gothic neighbourhood as the creative epiphany of the Extra-Luggage project.
44. Modern street traders cart
Street vendors were a common feature of daily life in Europe until the 50s. Today in many cities in the world, one will encounter people selling small items from a suitcase, a wheeled clothing cart or a small caravan café.
45. Pop Up at Galleries Lafayette Paris
An example of a pop-up store created by Jean-Paul Lespagnard. Jean-Paul wants to bring back the concept of nomadic vendors into our contemporary life. Everything is possible and flexible: a cabana on a beach in Goa, a hotel room in NYC, a friend’s house in Hasselt, an apartment in Mexico City, a temporary store in Knoke or LA, an Airbnb in Seoul or Göteborg, a pop-up corner shop in Tokyo, a tent in Marrakech, an old sheep house in Ibiza, a holiday house in Majorca, a small fisherman’s cottage in hydra or at JPL place in Brussels.
Jean-Paul interacts regularly with other established brands and Institutions. He adores cross-pollination to invigorate and spice up cult objects: From high-luxury cars to local food brands, you name it, he might have done something with it.
46. Galler X Jean-Paul Lespagnard.
47. Galler X Jean-Paul Lespagnard.
46. Press campaign for the collaboration
47. Chocolate box / Printed tin
To celebrate its fortieth anniversary, the Galler brand has teamed up with Jean-Paul Lespagnard to create fashionable «Eggs à la Mode». Haute couture supermarket packaging with graphic patterns inspired by Fabergé jewelled eggs. The box is divided into three parts, available in three interchangeable designs. This principle allows a combination of no less than 27 original models.
48. Gallerie Lafayettes X Jean-Paul Lespagnard.
49. Socksial Club X Jean-Paul Lespagnard.
48. Facade installation/window stickers
While presenting during Paris Fashion week, Jean-Paul Lespagnard has become one of Belgium’s most popular and talked-about designers. As a result, Jean-Paul has been honoured by Galleries Lafayette in Paris. Who decided to invite him to Galerie des Galleries for an entire 4 month-long exhibition and a whole facade installation. The unique 360° creative process offered an insight into his world. Humility, humour and individuality are some buzzwords defining Jean-Paul Lespagnard’s project. Who stands for a new generation of Belgian designers veering away from the abstract and the conceptual to privilege a generous and more pragmatic vision.
49. Socks / cotton and elastane
Humorously playing with socks manufacturing techniques, the sock can be worn right side up or inside out for 2 surprisingly different effects.
50. 1000th costume of Manneken Piss.
51. Eastpak X Jean-Paul Lespagnard.
52. Atomium X Jean-Paul Lespagnard
50. Installation / Technical fabric and neon ligh
It was an honor for Jean-Paul Lespagnard to design the 1000th costume of nano Manneken Pis. This monument is part of Brussels’ collective memory but also symbolizes Belgian surrealism. The installation is a tribute to mega Atomium. The outfit has the color of its silver spheres. A neon arch representing the daily fireworks of Expo 58 completes the design. Due to his size and proportions and the need to accommodate the water pipe, the costume was a complicated custom sewing job.
51. Backpack / Nylon and rubber
For two seasons, Eastpak released backpack collections with Jean-Paul Lespagnard. These capsule collections were available in two different colours and sizes, allowing people to wear them as backpacks or briefcases. For one season, Jean-Paul teamed up with the pope’s embroiderer to produce crafted straps. He teamed up with Louis Vuitton’s vegetal leather producer for the second one.
52. Cap / reflective fabric
Product study for the Atomium souvenir shop
53. Dandoy X Jean-Paul Lespagnard.
54. Belgian Embassy in Mumbai X Jean-Paul Lespagnard.
53. Paper Crown / Paper
To celebrate Kings and Queens this year, the famous Belgian cookie house Maison Dandoy invited Jean-Paul to design the paper crown furnished with the galette. For this design, Jean-Paul played with typical Dandoy dots. He studied production processes to make the most giant paper crown possible with reasonable manufacturing conditions.
54. Image caption from the fashion show
Belgian Embassy in Mumbai invited Jean-Paul Lespagnard to team with National Institute of Fashion Technology Mumbai students. Jean-Paul thought about this 2 weeks workshop exchange as a cross-pollination of two different cultural and design philosophies. The result, fusing his clothing line with traditional Indian garments, gave a new vision on positive cultural appropriation. Jean-Paul truly believes that this is what the world needs. Time, live talks, sharing, no prejudice, take good benefits of each other culture and joy.
55. Jaguar X Jean-Paul Lespagnard.
56. Jaguar X Jean-Paul Lespagnard.
55. Colour Design
56. Press campaign for the collaboration
Jean-Paul Lespagnard participated in an international campaign Feel XE, involving ambassadors from different disciplines like music (Dua Lipa) and sport (David Beckham). He threw himself into the program by revisiting the famous Jaguar Racing Green for a surprisingly unexpected Acid Green. With his passion for merging his projects into one big global concept, Jean-Paul even included this new colour in the development of his «Cheese on Fleek» fashion collection.