Jean Paul Gaultier will reportedly step down as creative director of Hermès after the spring 2010 show in Paris in October, Fashion Week Daily reports. Hermès hasn't offered comment on the rumors. Gaultier has been creative director of the house for the past six years, replacing Martin Margiela, who resigned in 2003. Hermès is one of those special labels, like Louis Vuitton, that seems impervious to the economic downturn. In the second quarter they managed to grow sales by 12 percent. Sales of leather goods alone were up 33.4 percent, while sales of ready-to-wear were up by 12.7 percent. The label is pushing so much product out the door they started their own crocodile farm to meet demand for $50,000 handbags made from exotic skins (three to four crocs per bag!). Hermès owns a 35 percent stake in Jean Paul Gaultier (perhaps they threw him some extra skins for his latest couture overalls). So Gaultier would be leaving many reptiles and even more critical acclaim behind. But who would take his place? Haider Ackermann did say he's "open" to a second job.
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