In 1984, Evelyne Chétrite and her husband Didier began a womenswear label named Sandro. For the first 20 years of its existence, Sandro was wholesale only. Then, in 2004, the Chétrites opened their first store in Paris. Now, Evelyne helms the brand with her son Ilan, and Sandro has over 450 stores around the world, from Hong Kong to Beirut, Casablanca to London, and New York to Milan. They have expanded from just womenswear to menswear (Sandro Homme came to be in 2008) and accessories.
But, more importantly, Sandro, along with several other Paris-based brands, is redefining contemporary clothing. It has created a new tier of designers between the old, established houses of Saint Laurent, Dior, and Chloé and global high-street brands like Zara both in its spirit (a little bit boho, a little bit rock ‘n’ roll, and very Parisian) and price-point.
The Sandro woman has “a chic, androgynous yet feminine style,” explains Evelyne. “She is confident and independent. She is looking for beautiful, modern, and original pieces. As for whether she has changed over the last three decades, Evelyne is sure she has. “Dealing with the art of contrast in the silhouettes has always been our credo while offering pieces dans l’air du temps. But over time, we got more and more confident in our choices and do not hesitate now to propose audacious, strong pieces for women who want to express their personality. “
Evelyne and her team are consistently inspired by their surroundings: “Being located in Paris is the most important thing in Sandro’s creation process,” she says. “The street is my favorite laboratory.”
“When I was younger, I wasn’t interested in becoming involved in the family business,” recalls Ilan, who studied economics at university. “I have always been surrounded by fashion since my childhood: watching my mother, my aunt (Judith Milgrom), and my grandfather,” he continues. “[But] I wanted to be a trader just like Charlie Sheen in Wall Street dealing with financial issues.”
Next on the docket for Sandro is the Spring/Summer collection, which will enter stores next year: “Long lengths, floral prints, white guipure and lace, mesh and crochet fabrics and suede outerwear are key trends we are exploring for the SS16 season,” says Evelyne.
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