Wonderland.

SANDRO × CLARA LUCIANI

Sandro taps up Clara Luciani for a collection inspired by 1950’s glamour.

Wonderland Sandro Clara Luciani Garden
Wonderland Sandro Clara Luciani Garden

Elegance is a quality that comes naturally to Evelyn Chetrite, the alluring designer who founded Paris-based fashion house Sandro back in 1984. Not even ties to a law degree would keep her from her one true passion, and after relocating to the French capital from Morocco in her teens, she’d finally meet her design destiny. Ever since, Chetrite has bowled us over year after year with fresh palette’s that evoke her colourful childhood, fusing bold and intrinsic hues with the needs and silhouettes of the cutting-edge Parisienne, doing it flawlessly too, might we add.

It would come as no surprise when, for her latest collection, she tapped up the über stylish and impeccably talented singer-songwriter, Clara Luciani, to help her out. Who else could better epitomise that unattainable, smoulderingly chic spirit the French are so revered for? The two became fast friends after Chetrite reached out to her over Instagram, putting her to the task as Sandro’s resident muse, and bonding over a shared love of art and design.

The two worked closely on the upcoming project for Sandro Woman’s, aiming to create a capsule that was timeless, iconic, and oh-so Luciani. After catching a glimpse of their enchanting campaign, we caught up with the pair and chatted life goals, the collection’s many inspirations, and why they make the perfect collaborative fit.

Wonderland Sandro Clara Luciani Vest B&W
Wonderland Sandro Clara Luciani B&W
Wonderland Sandro Clara Luciani Vest B&W
Wonderland Sandro Clara Luciani B&W

How did the collaboration with Sandro come about?
Clara: Evelyne reached out to me because she had seen me wearing Sandro, including on stage, and she developed the idea of an eventual collaboration.

What is it you love about the brand, and how is this aligned with your personal style?
Clara: The pieces in which I recognize myself the most are the splendid suits and blazers that appear in most Sandro collections. The cuts and details are always amazing.

How did you feel about being chosen as Associate Artistic Director?
Clara: Evelyne is a woman who has a great sense of style and elegance so I was really flattered that she thought of me for the collection.

So how involved did you get with crafting the looks?
Clara: Very involved! I drew everything and chose everything specifically. I sent some sketches I made on the iPad and we worked remotely during the lockdown. It was quite unprecedented for me, I got to choose fabrics, stitchings and buttons through screens.

What was your favourite part and the biggest challenge about taking this on?
Clara: The biggest challenge was to succeed in leading this collection until the end in spite of all the uncertainties brought by the health crisis. I was stuck in Scotland and so we had to do everything from a distance. My heart would start palpitating every time I received an email or fabric samples through the postal service! In the end, it made the development of this collection even more exciting.

The moodboard is really gorgeous – can you tell us a little bit about it?
Clara: The moodboard is built around everything I have visually adored for years, especially the aesthetic universe of the 50s and 70s, and also French fashion icons such as Françoise Hardy.

Can you tell us about any moments from film or music that inspired the looks?
Clara: Right before starting to draw the collection, I re-watched The Shining, which is a visually very strong movie, because of its colors, its patterns and its outfits, and I know it inspired me a lot. In a more general way, I’m also super inspired by Jacques Demy movies, and more specifically the Young Girls of Rochefort.

How do you hope the collection makes its wearer feel?
Clara: Free! It is the best sensation in the world and I hope that women who wear my pieces will feel bold and free, slightly edgy but most importantly elegant.

What are your favourite pieces from this AW20 collection?
Clara: Well for my collection at least, I think the most beautiful piece is the white silk shirt. It’s a timeless piece, divinely cut with very pretty details, I could wear it every day and never get bored of it!

What’s next for you?/What do you hope the year will bring?
I am actually writing my second album. I really hope that year 2021 will allow us to go back on tour and reconnect with our fans. I miss concerts way too much.

Wonderland Sandro Clara Luciani Tshirt B&W
Wonderland Sandro Clara Luciani Hair
Wonderland Sandro Clara Luciani Tshirt B&W
Wonderland Sandro Clara Luciani Hair

What’s the best piece of feedback you’ve had on the FW20 collection so far?
Evelyn: People seem to be really enthusiastic about the collection. What I have heard the most so far is that music truly reflects in the clothes, it could be Clara’s ideal wardrobe and so it looks very personal.

How do you hope the collection makes its wearer feel?
Evelyn: What I mostly look for when designing a collection is for the women who wear it to feel beautiful and confident in them, never overdressed because I hate that, but always elegant enough to be proud of their style. Clara and I really want this capsule collection to provide the same comfort to its wearers. And secretly, I hope wearing these pieces kind of feels like listening to a 70s rock’n’roll record, happy and free from trouble.

What are your favourite pieces from this AW20 collection?
Evelyn: The most iconic for us is the off-white shirt. It is super strong, with a classic collar, Clara’s initials jacquard-printed into the fabric, its masculine but feminine attitude and its four buttons on the sleeves, very important to Clara while she plays the guitar on stage so that her hand is always free.

What’s next for you?/What do you hope the year will bring?
Evelyn: We do have some interesting projects for our next Spring/Summer collection, but I cannot tell more right now so… stay tuned! I just hope this year brings health and happiness to everyone, we need it and I hope this collection will be a little heart-warming for everyone, just like Clara’s music is.

Wonderland Sandro Clara Luciani Stairs
Wonderland Sandro Clara Luciani Stairs

Why was Clara a perfect fit for Sandro – what does she epitomise about the Sandro woman?
Evelyn: Clara perfectly embodies the Sandro philosophy and values, and we feel very connected with her. She is an authentic woman, who can be down to Earth and realistic but also incredibly creative. She is always elegant and as a singer, you can recognize her voice in a second. Her style is unique.

Was it important that your collaborator was a musician? To emphasise Sandro’s championing of creativity?
Evelyn: At the studio, we always have music playing all day long in the background while we work. It’s one of our greatest sources of inspiration, some songs being empowering and others bringing us the peacefulness we need to focus. I think it was two years ago when someone from my team played one of Clara’s songs and we discovered her work. Then we started dressing her for some concerts, we saw her impressive evolution, in music and in style and how her universe transformed over years.

How did you find the process of collaborating with Clara?
Evelyn: It honestly felt like a game, Clara was so sweet and dedicated to the collaboration. We didn’t want to make something classic. We wanted her to be able to express her own vision and desires, as the real artistic director of the capsule collection. She fully designed it, and we provided our craftsmanship and technical expertise, making it feasible.

What were the most amazing moments and what were the biggest challenges about the collaboration?
Evelyn: Because of the Covid-19 situation and the lockdown, the collaboration had to be mostly developed from distance, through Zoom conferences, etc. That was obviously the biggest obstacle we had to face. We had sent her a few cloth samples, so she could work from her side and then later hand in hand with all the studio team. But the best part of this adventure was to show her the pieces for the first time, she had imagined them, and we brought them to life.

Shop Clara Luciani x Sandro here.

Wonderland Sandro Clara Luciani Dress
Wonderland Sandro Clara Luciani Jumper
Wonderland Sandro Clara Luciani Dress
Wonderland Sandro Clara Luciani Jumper
Photographer
Phoebe Cowley
Stylist
Kamran Rajput
Hair & Make-up Artist
Lauren McCormack
Models
Itu Nuola (Linden Staub) & Kris Kukharchyk (PRM Agency)
Art Direction
Joe McCrae
SANDRO × CLARA LUCIANI

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