Nana: Fashion has infinite possibilities, and new power is born from it. As a carrier of culture and times, fashion encompasses everything. From trendy to traditional culture, from celebrities, idols to everyone’s daily life, and from West to East, it is our discourse, our power, our time. Through Asian Voice, we hope to spread the local Asian fashion culture to the world by moving cross languages and borders.
Let’s welcome Sarah Andelman, the founder of Colette, one of the most famous concept stores located on Rue Saint Honoré in the city. In 2017, it was announced that the 20-year-old Colette would be closing its doors. However, Sarah Andelman has recently launched a consulting and publishing company called Just An Idea and embarked on a new journey in her life.
Fashion enthusiasts are transported to a particular time and place when they hear the name Sarah Andelman. She specializes in connecting fashion with various disciplines and media in unique and interesting ways. Her store is more than just a place to shop; it’s a cultural hub that attracts interesting individuals from around the world. Just An Idea is also a space that brings people from various disciplines together.Sarah Andelman has had extensive experience working with Asian brands such as Sacai, CDG, JW, and Undercover. In this issue of ASIAN VOICE, she shares her insights on Asian fashion and market development from an international perspective in the fashion industry. She also talks about some of the inspirations behind her work.
Nana: One of the best traditional and world-renowned select store “Colette” closed in 2017 and soon after you founded “JUST AN IDEA”, what made you decide to start JUST AN IDEA?Sarah: It was a very natural, spontaneous decision, in the continuity of my colette’s life. The idea was to keep it open, to be able to work with art, fashion, design, beauty, media, To help on collaborations strategy and retail pop-ups.
Nana: Colette has hosted many collaborative events with prominent Japanese brands such as Sacai, was there a particular collaborative project that impressed you the most?Sarah: I always loved working with Japanese brands, from fashion like Sacai, CDG, JW, Undercover, etc. To beauty like Uka, design with Medicom Toys, and more, publishing etc. I think Japan always offer a certain level of quality which is unique. With colette, we did lots of collaborations but I keep a very nice souvenir of « colette meets Comme des Garçons » pop-up we did in Aoyama, on Koto-dori, in 2005…
Nana:You have been selected as a judge for RAKUTEN FASHION WEEK = TOKYO FASHION WEEK, how do you feel Tokyo Fashion Week compares to other fashion weeks around the world you have visited.Sarah: I’m grateful to be a judge for this Tokyo Fashion week. It was actually part of the documentary « colette mon amour ». I find very inspiring to meet these designers and discover their collection. The craftsmanship, and their particularities… TFW is unique because Tokyo is unique ! Everybody is just so well dressed, no trends but the best personal styles!
Nana: Currently, there are “Asian Section” installations at both New York Fashion Week and PARIS FASHION WEEK, etc. How do you view Asian brands as a whole?Sarah: I feel they should be considered as any brand, no need for a specific section, and I think both Paris and NYC are strong because of this international vision.
Nana: In recent years, the number of Asians purchasing luxury and designer brands has increased dramatically; Do you have any insights into the changing Asian involvement in fashion and the overall Asian fashion market itself?Sarah: Not really, I feel it’s a market very well informed, always looking for the best.
Nana: You have visited many cities in Japan (Harajuku, Shibuya, Omotesando, etc.), is there a place in Japan or a city in Asia that is on your hotspot now?Sarah: Oh I always love to walk along Naka-Meguro and to stop by Cowbooks.But my recent love discovery is Bar Gyu in Niseko ! I can’t wait to be back. For their selection of sake and cocktails and the music!
Nana: In your many years of working in the global fashion industry, what has been the most inspiring episode for you?Sarah: So many, impossible to pick just one. I think it’s a world with no rules, always in movement… It’s not really about fashion, but I’m inspired and impressed by Hiroshi Fujiwara and Frgmt, the longevity and greatness of all his projects.
Nana: Lastly, many of our readers are young people who want to become world-class designers and founders, and we would be happy to hear advice from you on how to be successful in the fashion/culture industry.Sarah: Just follow your instinct ! And @justanidea 🙂
Just follow your instinct !