Sarah Monteil - An emerging talent and creative pioneer in the fashion world! Could she be the next big designer? Get an exclusive insight into her craftsmanship and creativity, from starting at a young age of 14!
When you can create outstanding clothes by yourself, you're not only skilled but a creative genius! That and many more describes the self-taught fashion designer from Paris: Sarah Monteil.
Patterns and colors are her love language. A sweet, young Parisian lady whose love for fashion multiplies with every needle.
Exclusive Interview with Sarah Monteil
Amina: Please tell us more about the little Sarah. Where did you grow up?
Monteil: I was born in Paris of a Cameroonian mother and a French father. As a child I moved a lot, passing from the south to the north of France, I also lived 6 months in Benin. Little Sarah was a very curious and creative little girl, I must say it hasn’t changed that much !
Amina: At what part in your life did you discover the interest in sewing?
Monteil:When I was 14, I drew a lot of clothes. One day my parents said to me, "You draw clothes, now you're gonna make them!" That's the way they bought me a sewing machine for Christmas. At first it was complicated, I was not sewing straight ahah I remember my grandmother who once told me "Are you drunk or what?" because I was zigzagging too much. But the place I learned the most was an association called "La Moutonne". Every Saturday morning I joined my small group of grannies who taught me how to sew, gave me their skills and advices. It was great!
Amina: What is your favorite type of fabric to sew with and why?
Monteil: I really like working with Wax because it’s the first fabric I sewed with. My Cameroonian family often gave me some so I started to develop an interest for this fabric. If I use it so often today it is for its patterns and saturated colors (I love colors!) but also to modernize the way we can see this fabric. We often have the image of the boubou worn by our mothers at home or traditional outfits when we think of this fabric, when it can be much more. More accessible, more contemporary, universal.
Amina: We discovered you during Fashion week and were amazed by your wonderful outfits you made yourself. What was your favorite piece to sew?
Monteil:Thank you very much! I love making sets but if I had to choose a piece I would choose : The corset.
Amina: What was your favorite fashion show last year?
Monteil: I didn’t have a favorite show, just looks I liked. For example the fiber dress in the Coperni show, a mix of ingenousity and surprise. Don’t we watch fashion hoping to be surprised ?
Amina: Where do you get your style inspiration from?
Monteil: I am inspired by everything around me : shapes, colors, photography, architecture, series, different cultures etc.. I don’t limit myself because I think creativity is nurtured by openness and curiosity.
Amina: Your top 4 outfits from last year.
Monteil: All of them are my favorites because of the time i spend making them.
Amina: Imagine you’re invited to a private dinner with Jean Paul Gaultier. What would you wear?
Monteil: I usually decide at the last moment so right now I don’t necessarily have a look in mind but all I can say is that I would make my outfit by myself and it will be EXTRA!
Amina: If you could design an outfit for two celebrities, who would it be?
Monteil: I would make an outfit for Rihanna and Zendaya, two fashion icons, which I’m sure will sublimate my creations each in its own way. Bonus: Billy Porter because he dares and this is something I appreciate in a person !
Amina: Do you have a current design project?
Monteil: Currently, I'm preparing my outfits for the next Paris fashion week season. A lot of work, few hours of sleep but then getting compliments that have no price.
Amina: Where do you see yourself in one year?
Monteil: I let the wind carry me, I only hope that my creations will have evolved in a good way and that I will have a little more recognition for all the investment I provide. As we say : Only hard work pays!
Amina: What does individuality mean to you?
Monteil: For me individuality is synonymous with uniqueness. It’s the way we stand out, those little things that make us who we are. I often like to repeat this quote that I wrote one day when I doubted my ability to rise to the top: What matters in life is not to be the best but to be unique because it is by being unique that the best were made.
Amina: What is one lesson last year taught you?
Monteil: Last year taught me that taking care of myself is the most important thing. If you are doing well, the rest will follow.
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