He was Karl Lagerfeld’s bodyguard and private assistant. In a biography, Sébastien Jondeau lifts the veil on work dependancy and the mysterious maker’s final good phrases. In assist of this guide and his new standing as a product marketing consultant, he continues to maintain the Karl Lagerfeld model alive.
Though the loss of life of Karl Lagerfeld in 2019 introduced an abrupt finish to a sure period of trend, the person in sun shades and powdered white hair continues to seize the creativeness. However who was he actually? The “Mohamed Ali of trend”, we are able to learn in Ça va, cher Karl?, the current biography of his bodyguard and private assistant Sébastien Jondeau, who developed for 20 years within the shadow of the style icon. “At first I had no intention of writing a guide. However a number of publishers inspired me to take action. I believe Karl could be happy with this testimonial, even when he was not very centered on the previous. It’s a no-nonsense reflection on numerous passages of my life with and with out him. He would most likely reply with a joke, to not have to speak about it. His humor was infectious.”
Though the loss of life of Karl Lagerfeld in 2019 introduced an abrupt finish to a sure period of trend, the person in sun shades and powdered white hair continues to seize the creativeness. However who was he actually? The “Mohamed Ali of trend”, we are able to learn in Ça va, cher Karl?, the current biography of his bodyguard and private assistant Sébastien Jondeau, who developed for 20 years within the shadow of the style icon. “At first I had no intention of writing a guide. However a number of publishers inspired me to take action. I believe Karl could be happy with this testimonial, even when he was not very centered on the previous. It’s a no-nonsense reflection on numerous passages of my life with and with out him. He would most likely reply with a joke, to not have to speak about it. His humor was infectious.” Sébastien Jondeau grew up on the outskirts of Paris. His demeanor as a small suburban boy—he had no disdain for shoplifting, combating, or motor racing—was in stark distinction to Karl Lagerfeld’s aristocratic and eccentric life-style. The beneficiant ideas he obtained from “Mr. Chanel” when he labored for his father-in-law’s trucking firm as a young person, in addition to that gentleman’s life – in castles and villas filled with artwork, books and design objects – shortly piqued his curiosity. In 1998, throughout one more transfer for Karl Lagerfeld, he determined to make the leap and ask him if he had a job for him. On the age of 23, he made his debut as an errand boy and driver, earlier than rising to the rank of bodyguard and confidante to Karl Lagerfeld. After just a few years, he even managed his private bills, reserving personal jets to all corners of the globe and ensuring that every one the journeys the creator needed to make have been as snug as doable. In 2015, when Karl Lagerfeld developed well being issues, Sébastien Jondeau had the medical exams recorded in his identify to disguise the creator’s prostate most cancers. And he continued to work as if nothing had occurred. “I’m an beginner boxer, however Karl was the ‘Mohamed Ali of trend’, standing knocked out. He fought to the tip – he was an actual German, and Germans are like that: they’re sturdy and maintain their very own, it doesn’t matter what.Whether or not he was on trip in Saint-Tropez or in New York for a boutique opening, he by no means stopped working.That was his life, and that is how he loved it.He was hooked on his job. In the summertime, whereas his friends loved the ocean and the solar, he drew, photographed… He instructed me he had already skilled every part.” To the eyes of the world, life as a private assistant to Karl Lagerfeld appeared like a ticket to paradise. To his pals, the generosity of the maker was spectacular, to the surface world it was decadence. He additionally shared this luxury life with Sébastien Jondeau. “What he thought was easy, we discovered exuberant or loopy. I received many books, photographs and jewellery from him. Even as we speak I all the time have photographs and letters from him with me, in addition to the primary Rolex he gave me – he usually purchased costly watches for his pals. He by no means received good items himself, on the pretext that it was tough to search out one which suited him. In 2005 I made the choice to offer him one yearly. In 2018 I purchased him a purple ceramic watch from Hublot Because of my contacts with the boss of LVMH Bernard Arnault I used to be capable of get my palms on the very first one so Karl was the primary in Paris to put on this watch He was very pleased with it and by no means took it off Shortly after, he gave me his Audemars Piguet. I took it to the model’s headquarters as a result of it wanted restore, however I by no means received it again.” Writing a guide about his private relationship with Karl Lagerfeld is the privilege of few folks. After all, a boxer shouldn’t be anticipated to supply nice literature. Hanging is the hole between his humble background and a world of luxurious, brimming with historical past, literature and design. The quick sentences, usually with a contact of jargon, make this biography extra actual than life. The world of glamor and fantasy contrasts with the uncooked flashbacks of Sébastien Jondeau’s tough childhood. With none self-censorship, he reveals his first sexual experiences as a young person, describes his typically failed relationships along with his first girlfriends and the way his mom misplaced her battle with most cancers. Between the strains we learn how like a trustworthy canine he protected Karl Lagerfeld in good and dangerous days. And simply as he all the time shared his items and privileges along with his fellow townspeople, he remained loyal to his boss. “I did not have a contented childhood with my father. Karl was like a father determine to me, and that made issues sophisticated at instances. You possibly can say extra to a father than to a boss.” However it’s certainly to Sébastien Jondeau that Karl Lagerfeld confided his final phrases on his hospital mattress. “It is nonetheless silly to have three Rolls and find yourself in a rotten room like that.” Like Karl Lagerfeld who used no medicine or alcohol, Sébastien Jondeau retains a wholesome thoughts in a wholesome physique, and does not shrink back from the occasional dose of adrenaline. “I proceed to train, however much less. I like browsing, biking and boxing, however in fact I really feel that I get older. I would like extra time to get well.” To say himself within the Parisian jungle, he began boxing on the age of 16. And through his profession as a bodyguard, he took half in a number of fights. It’s due to this fact no coincidence that Karl Lagerfeld has designed an unique pair of boxing gloves and a leather-based punching bag in collaboration with Louis Vuitton – the right present for his bodyguard. In 2018, he efficiently launched a primary males’s assortment impressed by his ardour for boxing for the Karl Lagerfeld label. In January final 12 months, Sébastien Jondeau was appointed as product marketing consultant for this label. This summer season, in collaboration with artistic director Hun Kim, he gives an professional sports activities males’s assortment that completely meets all the necessities of trend and sports activities fans. From the unisex parka in a protracted or quick model to T-shirts, hoodies or shorts with additional pockets, each merchandise options the emblem of the lads’s line – 21, rue St. Guillaume – brightened up with a fluorescent yellow notice. And the scholar has realized the lesson. Simply as Karl Lagerfeld refined his sketches for the Fendi and Chanel groups, Sébastien Jondeau additionally makes detailed drawings to make clear his concepts. “In a method I am like Karl. After all I am not a educated stylist, however as a baby I drew rather a lot and went to the academy for some time. I additionally write down my intentions on my sketches – the crew works from them. I then go recurrently to the workshops to observe the manufacturing course of. The outcome should be wearable, snug and sturdy.” The gathering, designed in natural and recycled supplies, now shines in shops. Karl Lagerfeld would have been so proud that he might need launched one in every of his projections. “I do not wish to shine, I wish to be good”.