Following news of former Hermès Int’l CEO Jean-Louis Dumas’ death Saturday, Martin Margiela released a statement to WWD in which he paid tribute to his onetime boss. Chosen by Dumas to oversee womenswear at the label in 1997, the notoriously media-averse designer recalled the beginning of their 5-year collaboration (and his own controversial appointment). “When we first met, he asked me anxiously if I was going to cut the ‘Kelly’ in half because, at the time, the press used the words ‘grunge’ and ‘destroy’ to describe my work,” Margiela said. In the end, however, Dumas’ confidence in the designer and willingness to give him carte blanche in the creative process endeared him to Margiela, who considered Dumas not only open-minded, but charismatic and gentle. With the letter, it’s unlikely Margiela will attend Friday’s funeral, but if he does, expect him to fly well below the radar.