After three years at the helm of Bottega Veneta, Daniel Lee is leaving. “Bottega Veneta and Daniel Lee announce their joint decision to end their collaboration,” a statement from the label begins, “he brought new energy to the House and greatly contributed to the new momentum that Bottega Veneta is enjoying today.” Since joining in 2018, the designer, who was schooled under the tutelage of Phoebe Philo at Céline, transformed the sensible Italian brand into a blockbuster fashion house, beloved of the art world, fashion circles, and influencers alike.
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Under Lee’s reign, Bottega established a verdant dialogue of covetable accessories, which straddled the line between being incredibly expensive and cool. Think Puddle Boots, Chain Pouches, and Cassette bags, which made up roughly 91 per cent of the label’s sales. Yet, despite his instagrammable designs, Lee’s biggest move was to remove Bottega Veneta from the mill of social media altogether, absconding from traditional marketing to spotlight his collections via clandestine salon shows and zines. “My time at Bottega Veneta has been an incredible experience,” he says. “I am grateful to have worked with an exceptional and talented team and I am forever thankful to everyone who was part of creating our vision.”
Over the past three years Kering, Bottega Veneta’s parent company, cited a 55.1 per cent growth in wholesale account orders, suggesting that buyers couldn’t get enough of the Lee’s logoless, mammoth proportioned, and texturally feral designs. Similarly, during the pandemic, Bottega Veneta reported an 8.5 per cent revenue increase. “The remarkable growth of the brand over the last three years bears testimony to the success of his creative work,” Leo Rongone, CEO said. Meanwhile, François-Henri Pinault, CEO of Kering, notes that Lee’s “singular vision made the House’s heritage relevant for today and put it back to the center of the fashion scene”.
“A new creative organisation for the House will be announced soon,” the statement concludes. Stay tuned for more and click through the gallery above to see Lee’s final Detroit collection at Bottega Veneta.