Article by Frank Cierpial
This is a very political year. We Americans, are going through our presidential face off now and the French are set to start theirs. Politics can be depressing and a touchy subject that most people don’t like to talk about (calmly). But, whether you like it or not does not keep it out of your life and current political trends and revolutions are leaking into the world of Fashion. This is true mostly in the accessories field…bags and shoes. People in the industry cannot deny that there is a large demand to have products made in Europe. This is no different in France. In recent years, French brands have been criticized for outsourcing and sending their manufacturing to North Africa, Asia, and Africa. When I studied in Florence where nothing is outsourced, because Italy rejected the idea right away…my professor there went as far as saying that Fashion was dead in Paris. How could people think that in the home of Savoir-faire and Haute Couture. Well, I met two brands at the Premiere Classe tradeshow, which is a tradeshow primarily for accessories, that are looking to change that and show the world that Fashion in Paris is very much alive, innovating, and showing the world the power and resiliance of the French.
You will know her work right away. Her plated bags are instantly recognizable. Her name is Helene Varennes and she works in an atelier here in Paris to make bags that the modern woman can wear with any outfit. Walking into the tradeshow, her pleated two toned bags cough my eye right away. Wen I asked her about them she told me that they were in fact made in France and made by hand as she showed me the leather interior of the bag. The pleats struck me as such an innovative design that I had to ask her where she got the inspiration to do that and from there she gave me the whole story.
The atelier is called Atelier Mamet and it has been around since 1974. She told me that the atelier once released pleated bags, and to keep the tradition she decided to give her own take on the pleated bags. The result is this innovative design. If you don’t like the pleats, because not everybody had to like the same thing, she has bags without the pleats that are classic and come in a variety of colors. If you love the Parisian flair and charm then these bags are perfect. They are well made and serve you well for any occasion on your schedule throughout the year and the years.
Out of all the brands that I have seen, this brand is the one that impressed me the most. Chamberlan is a totally new band that is coming out that is made in France and is going to revolutionize the art of buying shoes. For some people like Carrie Bradshaw, shoe buying is fun. Of course, she was a size 7. For the size tens and twelves of the world, it can be a bit more challenging. Imagine if there was an app that you could download to your phone and with this app, you could take a picture of your foot from 8 sides. The pictures would be sent directly to the brand who would then make a wooden replica of your exact size and make you a shoe, custom-made. That’s right ! You can have whatever colors and materials you want. You can even choose the color of the piping. With Chamberlan Paris , this is going to be a reality.
This is an opportunity to create your own shoe. You can even add feathers from a feather manufacturer in Paris who works with High Fashion brands for Haute Couture. This is the top of the top. You will be able to order from wherever you are on the world with its app and we will certainly let you know when it can be downloaded. For the moment this is a whole new brand that has not even been launched yet. You may also browse thrush the models and customize them as you like. This brand is the future of buying luxury shoes.
These two brands are out to show that Fashion is not dead in Paris and that innovation is very much alive. If you are looking for more accessories that are made in France, then these are perfect brands for you. Feel free to check out the website for Varennes and the site for Chamberlan Paris will be up soon. Enjoy !