Paris: the city of love and its best independent fashion houses.

Paris, the city of love, high fashion and effortless beauty. The city famous for its high fashion couture houses. Often overlooked are the independent fashion brands based in the French capital.

Quite often the smaller/independent brands create such beautiful pieces that not many people will have but certainly should consider.

Paris is a city that I have admired and dreamt of visiting for so many years. A city of timeless style, effortless beauty and romance. Something which galerie de aims focuses on.

Each brand has spoken exclusively to galerie de aims magazine and here is what they had to say…

Syrah Paris

Syrah creates some timeless pieces, one of my favourites is the Monceau Pink top and the A jacket, what are your favourite products? 

For our first collection we launched The M dress and The P dress – the names were a nod to our favourite pieces. The M dress, short in velvet for Marion and The P dress, a long dress for Parysatis.’ 

Sustainability is such an important part of fashion, is creating sustainable pieces important to you as a brand?

Sustainability is no longer an option, for fashion industry but also in our daily life. As a brand we want to do pieces made with common sense, with a limited impact and accessible; our “mantra” is REUSE, RETHINK & RECYCLED and that’s why we have 3 collections : A vintage An up-cycling collection to give a new life to things that would have been wasted, or that would have contributed to pollution.Our own collection with pieces made only with recycled our surplus stock of fabric, buttons…

Paris is the fashion capital of the world and is seen as an inspiration for so many, what are your favourite fashion styles of Paris? 

 ‘The timeless one, the one you can switch from a day look to a night look easily. And that is not too much, the very Parisian less is more!

Your brand is so timeless and beautiful, what made you start it?

 ‘Syrah is the story of a meeting, of a common desire, of a shared vision and the aspiration to take up a challenge.The desire to create a sunny, generous, timeless brand inspired by the soft rays of the sun, faded colours, shared memories, pieces handed down. We have the same vision, we want to offer a more responsible, accessible, timeless and unique wardrobe in which we feel confident, sexy. At the same time we also give us a challenge : to reduce the social and environmental impact of the fashion industry, on our scale to make a difference, to be an alternative. Even if it is impossible to produce in a 100% responsible and sustainable way, we believe that a more respectful approach to the environment, and to stakeholders is possible.

What are you excited for with your brand? 

About all the ideas, project that we have in mind. We learn every day and we also see the difficulties and the missing link of this industry which give us ideas to improve the production line of fashion production. We are often impatient – lucky us not at the same time ! – but we also know that good things take time and we want to do it in the right way. 

Alice Balas

Alice Balas creates some beautiful pieces, one of my favourites is the black skirt and the longline jackets, what are your favourite products? 

My favourite and the one I wear pretty much everyday wherever I go and whatever the weather is the biker jacket, iconic perfecto ! Then, I love the model Corto, in my special champagne leather. 

Sustainability is such an important part of fashion, is creating sustainable pieces important to you as a brand?

Of course and unconsciously I have been doing it since the beginning. Making unique and bespoke pieces made in Paris. Using leather which lives much longer lives than vegan plastic fake leather. And using up cycled leather. 

Paris is the fashion capital of the world and is seen as an inspiration for so many, what are your favourite fashion styles of Paris?

I love iconic and timeless pieces and effortless chic styles, I like a blue Levi’s pair of jeans with a white tee and a trench. I like Charlotte Gainsbourg, Jane Birkin attitude. A bit of androgynous with a feminine touch. 

 Your brand is so effortless and beautiful, what made you start it? 

I was looking for biker jacket that would be more feminine than the black and silver and heavy one we could find on the market. I am not a stylist so I though I take an iconic and I re-interpret it with my graphic and photographic eye. 

What are you excited for with your brand? 

Designing new pieces and making more unique and bespoke pieces. I love designing with my clients. It is a great human experience.

Calher Delaeter

Calher Delaeter creates such high quality products , one of my favourites is the George V lace top , what are your favourite products? 

We love every piece of our collection zero, each one of them has its own story and special inspiration associated with a district from Paris. If we had to name one, it would be our velvet Marais Turtleneck, the silver and electric blue shiny versions. It is our first ever piece, the one that made us start the CALHER DELAETER adventure and that initiated the rest of the collection. They were featured by the French music band L’Impératrice in two of their video clips, Voodoo? and Anomalie Bleue, which was truly magical for us since we are great fans of the band and listen to them a lot. 

Sustainability is such an important part of fashion, how do you focus on sustainability as a brand? 

We are conscious of the challenges of our times and aim to participate in this important shift the industry has to take. Sustainability is not an option for us. We believe in slow-fashion, we produce very small quantities in our local workshop based in the Paris area, we source our fabrics with European sellers and we try to include as much sustainable fabric as we can in the collections without putting limits to our ideas and creativity when designing our pieces. We are for instance working with exceptional velvet organic cotton for our t-shirts that we source in the Netherlands. We also use a very interesting and innovative material, cactus skin, a vegan leather alternative using less water and no chemicals. 

Paris is the fashion capital of the world and is seen as an inspiration for so many, what are your favourite fashion styles of Paris?

Paris is a never-ending source of inspiration. We love our city and keep exploring it every day. The melting pot of cultures in the city, the creativity of its inhabitants, the architecture, the art, its different districts, every aspect of it is an inspiration. Our favourite fashion styles are the gender fluid ones we can see in the underground queer scene of the city, the extravagant party looks pulled in the clubs but also the cool vintage looks from the thrift shops of Montmartre or Saint-Ouen.  

Your brand is elegant and cool, what made you start it? 

Thank you! We started creating clothes seeing a lack of high-end fluid options in the market. We bought our sewing machine and started learning. We were often going to the Saint-Pierre Market, a famous fabrics market in Montmartre, Paris. It is where we bought the fabrics for our prototypes. Slowly but surely, people around us started asking for our creations and we decided to start the adventure and create the brand in March 2020. 2 months later our friends, Luisa and Emmanuelle, joined us and have been supporting the brand ever since.

What are you excited for with your brand? 

We are excited about the future. The collaborations to come, our next creations and, the exciting projects we have in mind. 

Chere Terre

Chere Terre create such high quality T-shirts , one of my favourites is the Tige Verte top , what are your favourite products? 

It is such a great one by its minimalism, and actually our best-seller! Personally, I love our ‘Hip Hip Hip Houmous’ t-shirt, as I am a crazy hummus lover. And I would also choose our Tige Verte hoodie in thick organic cotton, it is just so comfortable!

Sustainability is such an important part of fashion, why are you creating pieces with sustainability in mind?

 Growing up in the countryside of France, in Auvergne, at my grandparent’s I’ve always been surrounded by nature and animals. So I’ve always felt really attached to it, the question of sustainability came really naturally. Our logo has actually a double lecture, you can see a minimalist earth in one line and the image of a woman, Mother Earth, from her profile! 

Paris is the fashion capital of the world and is seen as an inspiration for so many, what are your favourite fashion styles of Paris?

It sounds really cliché but I do agree Paris still has a very strong  connection with Fashion. My favourite styles are unisex ones, they are generally the sexiest and classiest looks !  Oh, and ‘Do it yourself‘ looks too! People who have the talent to create their own clothes by themselves are so inspiring. 

Your brand is so fun and pretty, what made you start it? 

Exactly like you I think ! First lockdown in France! I had extra free time, and always had this dream of creating a vegan clothing brand that fits my strong beliefs about animal rights but that is as well very earth conscious. That’s why the name of the company is Chère Terre, it means Dear Earth. Our products are the answer,  like an open letter to Mother Earth. Timeless, resistant, eco friendly and fun!One of the first things we did was actually find a partnership so we could plant a tree for every T-shirt sold. Then it was obvious that it had to be in organic cotton, locally sourced, made in France, with the highest standards! 

 What are you excited for with your brand? 

We have a lot of ideas of future products as we want to develop the Chère Terre silhouette. We are so impatient to show you!

The best of Paris according to those who know it best…

Favourite areas of Paris?

Parysatis (Syrah): The 11th ! That’s my last address in Paris and it has everything ! Perfect little gem vintage shops , restaurants ,bars, some parks and a lot of cute corner boutiques !  

Marion (Syrah) My district the 18th arrondissement, often well-known for Montmartre and Abbesses, but I like the atmosphere, all the merchants in there, above all food merchants!  

Alice Balas: Palais Royal,  centre Pompidou, le marais, Luxembourg garden. 

Calher Delaeter :Montmartre, for its beautiful picturesque streets, vintage shops and the Saint-Pierre market, where our brand adventure started. But also the Canal Saint-Martin, where we like to enjoy the sun, take a break and meet during the weekend. And of course, the iconic district of le Marais where we roam around the art galleries and fashion concept stores. 

Chere Terre: Le Marais of course ! It’s the heart of Paris, and I won’t recommend any precise place, the purpose is to ‘flâner dans les rues’, walking around with not any specific purpose, let yourself walk with the flow. 🥰 And  I can’t keep it only for me: Le Marché aux Fleurs, Île de la cité. It has always been one of my favourite places in Paris when I was visiting as a child. It’s right on a little island on the river Seine, in the middle of Paris. Super charming during every season! 

Favourite fashion/beauty stores in Paris now? 

Parysatis (Syrah) : For fashion i would say a lot of vintage shops : la mode vintage , thanks god I’m a VIP Etc .. for beauty I’m obsessed with Oh my cream

Marion (Syrah) Hard to say! I prefer the small shop over the big mall. In Paris, you should go to Empreinte, La tresorerie, Merci, Le labo.

Alice Balas: Kilomètre paris, by Alexandra Senes who I did a collaboration with, rue du vertbois 58 M by Sophie Rioufol, best shoes selection Officine universelle rue de Saintonge.

Calher Delaeter: Our favourites fashion stores in Paris are the vintage stores where we find some of our inspirations.

Chere Terre: Beauty store: Veganie, a very ethical cruelty free store. Fashion stores I love are Arsayo backpack store, Front de Mode store and all the thrift shops in Le Marais ! 🤩

What’s the best thing about being a Parisian fashion independent? 

Parysatis (Syrah) : I agree with Marion, the freedom and the big dream ! 

Marion (Syrah)To be free, free to create, free to dream big. 

Alice Balas: Freedom. 

Calher Delaeter: Paris is at the centre of fashion, so many talents live in the city, seamstresses, designers, artists… As first timers in the industry, being surrounded by so many talents is very inspiring and it allows us to get all the help and support we need.

Chere Terre: I think there are some special places where people are really excited about Fashion, Paris is definitely one of them if not the first! So, having people around you talking a lot about it, interested in it, to change it and make it more ethical is really exciting! And I will always remember when I was 20 and sneaked in Jean Paul Gautier’s show during the Fashion week! I pretended I was some random press people and it just worked! Inside, it was pure excitement, I was fascinated by all these models, people. The show was so great, a moment I will never forget. ❤

Thank you so much to all the Parisian independents for their contributions to this feature.

KEEP IN TOUCH

Instagram/ @galeriedeaims

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