Underground French Brands to Watch

Late­ly it feels like the world is putting up a mighty, almost French-like resis­tance against over-con­sol­i­da­tion and wal­mart-ifi­ca­tion, at least in la pur­chas­ing de les things. Oui, Ama­zon remains dom­i­nant despite being the clogged storm drain of the inter­net, but there’s been a real, pal­pa­ble, shift in the past few years — le peu­ple want local­ly-made and they aren’t wait­ing around for change. They want things made by arti­sans that you can meet, things not made of plas­tic, things that aren’t anony­mous or indus­tri­al-feel­ing, things that pol­lute less. Hence the resilience/resurgence of indy brands.

Here in Paris, in the shad­ow of the tow­er­ing land­marks ded­i­cat­ed to Dior, Chanel, Bal­main, et al, there’s a new fash­ion scene to be reck­oned with. Young brands get­ting noticed « pip­ing hot from the ideas oven » — in fact, most have just been launched this year or the last. There is a strong empha­sis on being très eco­lo so per­haps the water­ways of tomor­row will not be clogged with scratchy, world-trav­el­ing, poly­ester For­ev­er 21 castoffs…Dare we dream a dream in which only microplas­tics and the occa­sion­al city share bike that Parisian locals yeet into the riv­er Seine to feed the giant croc­o­dile some say slinks around our murky-yet-beloved waterways?

PHI 1.618

Eco-respon­si­ble leather goods brand PHI 1.618 is based around the gold­en ratio. The fig­ure sym­bol­izes the divine pro­por­tion which is preva­lent in the crafts­man­ship of these bags. Work­ing cir­cu­lar­ly in France only, there’s full trans­paren­cy between the Mai­son and cus­tomer. Both the mod­els and the crafts­men are French, and the mate­ri­als are excess from big­ger fash­ion houses.

Unique in their design, the bags come in a vari­ety of styles, sure to make you stand out from the crowd. In a vibrant orange, clas­sic chest­nut, marine blue, you can find trendy round shapes, or a clas­sic shop­per tote. The cir­cu­lar ‘Sac Phi­lo’ has a con­ve­nient han­dle on the side of the bag, dis­guised as a logo. A fab­u­lous meet­ing of func­tion and fash­ion. Small­er cross body bags are also avail­able in a soft leather grain. As well as bags, you can match with leather belts, tied in a quirky knot style. 

ADDRESS: 93 Rue du Bac (7th arr.)

PRICE: €€€

INSTAGRAM: @phi.618_paris

WEBSITE

SORELLA BRODERIE

Sophia Del Vec­chio makes unique embroi­dered bags, jack­ets, and cus­tomized objects using here years of expe­ri­ence as a 2nd gen­er­a­tion embroi­der­er. Hav­ing thread­ed stun­ning­ly ornate pieces of haute cou­ture for Chanel, YSL, and oth­er ‘grand cou­turi­ers’ she now brings a touch of the rar­efied to edgy pieces at prices a wee bit more acces­si­ble than the ball gowns found on red car­pets that she’s usu­al­ly work­ing on. 

ADDRESS: online

PRICE: €€

INSTAGRAM: @sorella.broderie

WEBSITE

Katia Sanchez

Queen of joy­ful sweaters, Katia Sanchez cre­ates life-long friends in her gar­ments. Made with a whole lot of love near Venice, the col­or­ful and funky jumpers are for women of all ages and all sizes. Inspired by a trip to India, a mag­nif­i­cent place full with colour and flavour, Katia embarked on a quest to cre­ate respon­si­ble mohair sweaters. More than just a well-made sweater, Katia Sanchez designs less but bet­ter, and pro­pos­es to trea­sure beau­ti­ful things instead of con­stant­ly renew them. 

ADDRESS: 12 Rue Philippe de Girard (10th arr.)

PRICE: €€

INSTAGRAM: @katiasanchezparis

WEBSITE

Sainte Isaure

Found­ed in 2016, Ingrid Mon­ti cre­at­ed leather goods brand based on her love for the arts. Inspired by dance, each of the bags she cre­ates have move­ment in mind. Whether it’s the small­er, func­tion­al design of the ‘Carmin’, or the daz­zling beau­ty of the dis­co ball-esque ‘Renée 3D’. Ingrid lives by the rule that ‘gold is the new black’. 

The hyper fem­i­nine designs are pro­duced in Spain by tra­di­tion­al crafts­man­ship, and the leather itself is up-cycled and high-qual­i­ty from Italy. What’s not to love? Avail­able in super fun colours that are sure to get your body pump­ing, Sainte Isaure hold pop ups every few months in Paris, keep tabs on their insta­gram for the details!

ADDRESS: Pop-up shops

PRICE: €€

INSTAGRAM: @sainteisaure

WEBSITE

Chatelles Paris

If Cin­derel­la were real, she’d be wear­ing Chatelles slip­pers to balls. These cute bal­let pumps, loafers, kit­ten heels and mules come in an array of col­ors and styles. 

Beau­ti­ful­ly blue in design, the Chatelles store on Rue du Bac is dec­o­rat­ed with flow­ers, chang­ing depend­ing on the sea­son. A true fairy tale expe­ri­ence, the store is home to per­fect­ly poised shoes across glossy walls and podi­ums. You can also cus­tomise the shoes with bows, jew­els and fluffy bob­bles. Looks like a per­fect fit!

ADDRESS: 94 Rue du Bac (7th arr.) / 91 Rue de Cour­celles (17th arr.)

PRICE: €€

INSTAGRAM: @chatelles_slippers

WEBSITE

THYRS

French sus­tain­able leather goods brand THYRS, live to cre­ate col­or for a vibrant life. The unique and mega trendy satchel style, icon­ic with the brand, comes with loads of pock­et space for every­day activ­i­ties. Whether it’s drop­ping the kids off, going to work or even a ses­sion at the gym, these uni­sex bags have got you cov­ered. The trade­mark design comes in a wide range of sizes and col­ors, as well as being eco-friend­ly with care­ful­ly cho­sen mate­ri­als and sourced in close proximity. 

Avail­able at La Caserne as well as their own web­site, you’ll also find many oth­er sus­tain­able good­ies in the large con­cept store. 

ADDRESS: 12 Rue Philippe de Girard (10th arr.)

PRICE: €€

INSTAGRAM: @thyrsparis

WEBSITE

Yuni Yunan

Asian her­itage is the foun­da­tion of Yuni Yunan, who pro­duces and sells respon­si­ble leather goods. Lit­er­al­ly trans­lat­ed to ‘here and there’ in Lao, the brand acts as a port­hole to the beau­ty of Asia. Com­bin­ing the cul­ture of Asia with the tra­di­tion and crafts­man­ship of France pro­duces a har­mo­nious blend. 

Find the inno­v­a­tive ‘Balu­chon’ bag with a tie top and buck­et shape, or look for the best-sell­ing ‘Obi’ bag with chain strap. All in won­der­ful­ly wear­able col­ors of pas­tels and neu­trals. Yuni Yunan often has stands at Print­emps, as well as at La Caserne in Paris. 

ADDRESS:12 Rue Philippe de Girard (10th arr.) / 64 Bd Hauss­mann (9th arr.)

PRICE: €€

INSTAGRAM: @yuniyunanparis

WEBSITE

Faubourg 54

Bring­ing a taste of Italy to Paris, Faubourg 54 hosts a col­lec­tion of art­sy t‑shirts, sweaters, acces­sories and more. Adding a lit­tle edge to the clas­sic Parisi­enne chic, Faubourg 54 adds embroi­dered slo­gans onto their vibrant items read­ing ‘tut­to va bene’, ‘l’amour, la vie, l’aventure’, ‘la dolce vita’, to name a few. 

A vin­tage inte­ri­or with wood­en floors, pas­tel col­ors and tiled walls, the store on Avenue Tru­daine is clas­si­cal­ly Ital­ian and also includes a lit­tle espres­so bar. A quick hit of caf­feine while you shop – smart idea. Mam­ma mia, we want more. 

ADDRESS: 33 Avenue Tru­daine (9th arr.)

PRICE:

INSTAGRAM: @faubourg54

WEBSITE

Alice Watier

The joy­ful designs or Alice Wati­er are noth­ing short than a ray of sun­shine. A full rain­bow can be found in the dynam­ic brand that cre­ates made-to-order bags. This clever design means no mate­ri­als or prod­ucts are wast­ed, a very effi­cient and eco method. As well as this, cus­tomers can get exact­ly what they envi­sion, avoid­ing dis­ap­point­ment all round! 

Choose from weaved bas­kets for sum­mer in the ‘Ana Cabana’ or how about ‘Sac seau Ana’, a cute buck­et bag where you can choose to mis­match inte­ri­or to exte­ri­or col­ors. Card hold­ers, clutch­es and even cus­tomiz­able fur­ni­ture – you can find all the play­ful good­ies at Alice Wati­er. Avail­able to order at La Caserne.

ADDRESS: 12 Rue Philippe de Girard (10th arr.)

PRICE: €€€

INSTAGRAM: @alicewatier

WEBSITE

Ann-So

The cool geo­met­ric designs of Ann-So are made to sur­vive the dai­ly trav­els of life. Ful­ly designed and made in Paris, the veg­etable tanned leathers are picked in Italy due to their strong nature and resis­tance to the elements.

In sleek black with pops of elec­tri­fy­ing yel­lows and pinks, the durable bags are sim­ple, draw­ing inspi­ra­tion from archi­tec­ture. Dis­cov­er the col­lec­tion at La Caserne Paris.

ADDRESS: 59 rue de l’Ourcq
(19th arr.)

PRICE: €€

INSTAGRAM: @annso_paris

WEBSITE

Atelier Farny

The cosy bags that are Ate­lier Farny are more than just an acces­so­ry, they’re the whole out­fit. Pouchy in design with a gath­ered open­ing, the large range are respon­si­bly hand made in Paris. Each piece enhanced by an ele­gant imprint or gold­en jew­ellery, high qual­i­ty leathers are sourced from big­ger fash­ion hous­es to ensure lux­u­ry that’s less harm­ful to the plan­et. Ate­lier Farny are also releas­ing new can­vas bags mixed with faux leather in a neu­tral palette. 

ADDRESS:12 Rue Philippe de Girard (10th arr.)

PRICE: €€€

INSTAGRAM: @ate­lier­farny

WEBSITE

Louizon

Call­ing all gyp­sy souls and boho addicts, Louizon designs floaty caf­tans, soft cot­ton max­is and light wide-legged trousers. Sport­ing the total hip­py vibe, the cloth­ing is cre­at­ed with embroi­dered flow­ers and cro­chet shapes, ful­ly embrac­ing the ‘70s spir­it! Yoni and Jes­si­ca Seror found­ed the brand in 2015, inspired by trav­el and their love for folk and indie music. Art-nou­veau graph­ics are appar­ent, as well as impor­tant ‘lit­tle’ things like buck­les, braids, buttons. 

Head to their show­room to check out the stars of the show, long imprint­ed dress­es that can be worn through­out the day and into the evening. 

ADDRESS: 15 Rue Pale­stro (2nd arr.)

PRICE: €€

INSTAGRAM: @louizon_paris

WEBSITE

Bag Affair

Sourc­ing bags for the busy busi­ness women of Paris and indeed the world, Bag Affair cre­ate 100% veg­an prod­ucts that are com­postable. Using cork and French linen, the bags are eco-friend­ly, while also look­ing cute – awe­some. Gen­er­al­ly larg­er in size to store a lap­top, lunch and make­up, think of Bag Affair as trendy brief­cas­es for styl­ish ladies. 

ADDRESS: 12 Rue Philippe de Girard (10th arr.)

PRICE: €€

INSTAGRAM: @bagaffair_france

WEBSITE

Caire

Inno­v­a­tive bag and lug­gage brand Caire cre­ate prac­ti­cal items that are time­less­ly trendy. With a range of prod­ucts from phone hold­ers to large shop­pers, Caire offers show stop­ping ele­gance that’s sure to turn heads. Sim­i­lar to its pho­net­ic sis­ter ‘care’, the brand uses eco mate­ri­als with non-ani­mal alter­na­tive leathers, nur­tur­ing the fash­ion indus­try in order to thrive and sus­tain.  

ADDRESS: 12 Rue Philippe de Girard (10th arr.) /  4 rue Papil­lon (10th arr.) / 10 Pas­sage Thiéré (11th arr.) / 9 rue Française (2nd arr.)

PRICE: €€

INSTAGRAM: @caire_officiel

WEBSITE

Lenny B. Paris

#lenny­b­girls are equipped with a cool-girl-chic, effort­less­ly put-togeth­er out­fits that remain styl­ish through­out the sea­sons. Made in France, all designs are sketched and cre­at­ed in their ate­lier, with care­ful crafts­man­ship and atten­tion to detail. The bou­tique is sim­ple and mod­ern, much sim­i­lar to the stock it keeps, with chunky knits, satin shirts and floaty skirts. The con­cept of Lenny B is that the items can be seam­less­ly mixed and matched, to get ulti­mate vari­ety and wear. 

ADDRESS: 129 Rue de la Pompe (16th arr.)

PRICE: €€

INSTAGRAM: @lennybparis

WEBSITE

Lironie

Unique­ly strik­ing, the bags of Lironie present a French savoir-faire com­bined with a punchy Mex­i­can atti­tude. Cham­pi­oning indi­vid­u­al­i­ty, Lironie is a whol­ly inclu­sive brand and cre­ate for the dar­ing and bold. Quirky details are what makes these bags mag­i­cal, such as the orig­i­nal peg brooch design to open and close. Each col­lec­tion con­sid­ers the envi­ron­ment with­out com­pro­mis­ing cre­ativ­i­ty, all with a sense of humour and wit that tran­spires through the bags. 

ADDRESS: 12 Rue Philippe de Girard (10th arr.)

PRICE: €€€

INSTAGRAM: @lironie.official

WEBSITE

LAJU

Cre­at­ed by Jus­tine Bossard in 2018, LAJU was found­ed to take a stance against the abun­dance of waste appar­ent at high-end fash­ion work­shops. Pre­vi­ous­ly work­ing for big names her­self, Jus­tine formed LAJU using leather scraps for a respon­si­ble future. The uni­sex brand is min­i­mal­ist with clean sil­hou­ettes for bags that suit any­one and every­one. Pre­mi­um mate­ri­als are sourced and bags are made 100% in France, keep­ing the sup­ply chain small. Choose from a range of smooth, soft-grained prod­ucts in con­tem­po­rary shapes that won’t go out of style. 

ADDRESS: 12 Rue Philippe de Girard (10th arr.)

PRICE: €€

INSTAGRAM: @lajuparis

WEBSITE

Maison Peaux Neuves 

Sus­tain­ably sourced mate­ri­als make up the exquis­ite Peaux Neuves designs. Aside from wine, it turns out raisins can also be used to cre­ate beau­ti­ful bags too. Grape leather goods offer an eth­i­cal alter­na­tive to ani­mal leather, pay­ing homage to France’s wine-grow­ing cul­ture. With as lit­tle impact as pos­si­ble, Peaux Neuves design sim­ple bags with a chic aes­thet­ic that’s wear­able 365 days of the year. Next time you’re con­sid­er­ing a bot­tle of vino, opt for the life­long friend in a Peaux Neuves bag instead. 

ADDRESS: 12 Rue Philippe de Girard (10th arr.)

PRICE: €€

INSTAGRAM: @maisonpeauxneuves

WEBSITE

17H10

Shoul­der pads, state­ment suits, tai­lored trousers and sexy tees. Pow­er dress­ing is the 17H10 brand, designed for eth­i­cal work­wear that makes you feel con­fi­dent. Avail­able in sizes 34 to 48, the brand is com­mit­ted to cre­at­ing for all women, using nat­ur­al and recy­cled mate­ri­als.  Enhanc­ing beau­ty both inside and out, 17H10 also oper­ate a tai­lor-made ser­vice to cater for all silhouettes. 

The bou­tiques have a vin­tage feel with a cosi­ness, and plen­ty of friend­ly assis­tants to mea­sure you for your per­fect fit­ting suit. 17H10 addi­tion­al­ly offer per­son­al­ized advice on col­orime­try and mor­phol­o­gy to see what suits you best. 

ADDRESS: 36 rue de Sévi­gné (3rd arr.) / 12 rue du Cherche-Midi (6th arr.) / 28 rue des Batig­nolles (17th arr.)

PRICE: €€

INSTAGRAM: @17h10.paris

WEBSITE

Domestique

Cre­at­ed by Simon Dela­cour, the Domes­tique style is vibrant and pas­sion­ate, incor­po­rat­ing bags into every­day activ­i­ties. Unique designs come in the styles of mini box-like crates, as well as leather shop­pers that look like paper bags. Every day is mar­ket day with Domes­tique – you’ll always want to fill your bag with colour­ful good­ies. This is the charm of the brand, who pro­duce chem­i­cal-free nat­ur­al leather with a unique mate­r­i­al that soft­ens with the con­tact of your own skin. 

Made in Paris at their ate­lier, respect­ing the plan­et is at the heart of Domes­tique, always made-to-order to reduce waste. Domes­tique will have you crav­ing fresh­ly squeezed orange juice with­out reason. 

ADDRESS: 12 Rue Philippe de Girard (10th arr.)

PRICE: €€€

INSTAGRAM: @domestique

WEBSITE

Idano

Born in 2014, Idano is a no-non­sense ready-to-wear cloth­ing brand which aims to make qual­i­ty afford­able for all. Fem­i­nine sil­hou­ettes and live­ly prints are at the core of Idano. Reduc­ing the amount of third-par­ties in the cre­ation process, they work with a ver­ti­cal man­u­fac­tur­ing method that allows for an eth­i­cal, quick­er trend turn around. Buy­ing Idano items is a per­son­al expe­ri­ence, designed to bring fun and joy to both your wardrobe and life. 

Keep your eyes peeled for pop-ups in Printemps.

ADDRESS: Pop-up shops

PRICE: €€

INSTAGRAM: @idanoparis

WEBSITE

Natalys

Call­ing all soon-to-be mamas and those with chil­dren to Natalys. Offer­ing the most adorable baby fits with that chic Parisi­enne charm, friends will be ooing and awing all day long. They’ve got the mom’s cov­ered too with gor­geous preg­nan­cy fits that match nice­ly with baby. 

Warm, flow­ery and com­fy styles, and floaty dress­es to accen­tu­ate preg­nan­cy curves while cot­ton dun­ga­rees can hold bump comfi­ly in place. As well as this, shop for acces­sories of high chairs, chang­ing bags and blan­kets, bibs and more. Found­ed in 1953, find Natalys items in con­cept store ‘Natalys and Friends’ on Rue Saint-Denis. 

ADDRESS: 1 Rue Saint-Denis (1st arr.)

PRICE: €€

INSTAGRAM: @natalys_paris

WEBSITE

Le Petit Dakarois 

A dynam­ic fusion of cul­ture from Africa and art-deco mod­ernism from France, Le Petit Dakarois hand-makes pat­terned bomber jack­ets, sweaters as well as inte­ri­ors such as cush­ions. Friends Nil Yahiaoui and Yoann Aboulka­s­si­mi fell in love with Séné­gal and its local tra­di­tions, draw­ing inspi­ra­tion for their cloth­ing brand which they formed in 2019. 

Tra­di­tion­al designs from Dakar are evi­dent in the hyper-col­or­ful flo­ral shapes and geo­met­ric lines while Parisian style comes through in the fit and struc­ture. A brand that con­sis­tent­ly gives back, Le Petit Dakarois have many ongo­ing char­i­ty projects with the vil­lages around Dakar, giv­ing meals and form­ing close rela­tion­ships. You’re bound to feel the love of Africa with Le Petit Dakarois.

ADDRESS: 12 Rue Philippe de Girard (10th arr.)

PRICE: €€

INSTAGRAM: @lepetitdakarois

WEBSITE

Carlos-Carlos Paris

Vin­tage-lov­ing house of ‘60s inspired dress­es, Car­los-Car­los was found­ed by Scar­lett Claver­ie-Bulte. Cre­at­ing just dress­es, Claver­ie-Bulte believes that it is a sta­ple piece in a fem­i­nine wardrobe that can cause dra­ma and exude asser­tion. The cut and mate­r­i­al are intrin­sic to the Car­los-Car­los brand, using warm and lumi­nous col­ors to flat­ter all skin tones. Trans­par­ent in nature, the brand work with upcy­cled mate­ri­als in a zero-waste production.

« If the soul of Car­los-Car­los was for a moment, it would be dawn, a (strong) cof­fee in one hand, a crois­sant in the oth­er.» Let’s start liv­ing life to the full embrac­ing our inner Twiggy.

ADDRESS: 18 rue Hen­ry Mon­nier (9th arr.)

PRICE: €€€

INSTAGRAM: @carloscarlosparis

WEBSITE

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