Jil Sander, Big Mac Aficionado. Photograph by Arthur Elgort via Getty Images.

Jil Sander Takes Road Trips in Her Bentley and Stops at McDonald’s

The minimalist legend's road trip routine is high-low iconic.

by Rachel Tashjian
Oct 30 2017, 12:26pm

Jil Sander, Big Mac Aficionado. Photograph by Arthur Elgort via Getty Images.

So maybe you've rented a red Corvette Stingray, you've curated the perfect Spotify playlist, you're going to sing along to Janis Joplin's "Me and Bobby McGee" while the sun sets over a dope vista, and you just know you're going to stop at a classic diner and eat a perfect cheeseburger and take an Instagram story of your best friend blowing bubbles in a milkshake because freedom is just another word for nothing left to lose.

But your plans for the #coolestroadtripever have nothing on designer Jil Sander's. Having stepped away from her eponymous brand in 2013, Sander is preparing to open a retrospective of her work in her native Germany, and tells WWD that one of her passions is taking long drives—"I can drive for 10 hours no problem"—in her now-vintage Bentley. "Believe it or not, for the last 30 years, [I drive] in a Bentley. I said other women buy diamonds, I buy a car. At that time, a Bentley was even more British. Now it's closer to an Audi. But mine is really comfortable. And cool. I could be a racer."

Sander also discusses her appreciation of McDonald's, which became a key component of her road trip regimen when driving to Gstadt, the glamorous German ski resort: "For 30 years we had a house in Gstadt. My friend always went for two or three months or for Christmas, so we went with the car. And we stopped at McDonald's because frankly McDonald's is much cleaner than those restaurants on the autobahn. I always eat the classic McDonald, but I don't eat it all the time."

Sander famously designed a brown paper bag as a part of her Fall 2012 menswear collection, which will be on display at the retrospective and which the designer says was a take on the McDonald's carry-out bag: "I don't want to be a promoter [of McDonald's]—though we are showing our McDonald's bag in Frankfurt, so that fits. Actually, we wanted to show something where we can say it's fun. Accessories don't always have to be too serious. They can be amusing." The Jil Sander paper bag had stitched grommets and a Jil Sander logo and, despite its $290 price tag, sold out everywhere almost immediately. Sander is also noted for her work at Uniqlo, bringing her monastic minimalism to a mass audience with her J+ line; perhaps you'll consider carrying an actual McDonald's bag as the Uniqlo answer to that 2012 paper grail.

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