Oui, oui, the French know a thing or two about ‘la mode.’ Who are we kidding?! Le mot, ‘la mode’ is synonymous with being French. Fashion season has just wrapped up and we are thrilled about our newest feature of Franglais Stories with French designer, Gotal Ryam, who launched her namesake fashion label, GRLP a year ago.
OOJSF: En français, quelle est votre définition de la mode?
GR:La mode c’est avant tout des vêtement dans lequel on se sent bien et qui reflètent à la fois qui nous sommes. C’est une tenue dont tous les éléments s’accordent entre eux.
OOJSF:What clothing item should every woman have in their closet?
GR:A black dress.
OOJSF:Where did you get your fashion training from?
GR:Central St Martins
OOJSF:What languages do you speak?
GR:Mbay, French, English
OOJSF:Did you face any difficulties when you first moved to London? If yes, please explain.
GR:Yes, I faced difficulties,there were a few language difficulties at the beginning; once I moved here I realised I didn’t really speak English. But luckily for me, hardly anyone is really from London; because everyone is from somewhere else. And with time you improve your English and you get used to the city.
OOJSF:What inspires your fashion line?
GR:I am inspired by everything around me.
OOJSF:What are the challenges of being a budding fashion designer?
GR:One of the biggest obstacle to launching my own label is getting financial backing, because producing garments is very expensive. There are many aspects involved in running your own label. You have to have the passion to really make it because it takes tremendous amounts of hard work. You have to live, breathe, and dream fashion.
OOJSF:What clothing item do you think is timeless?
GR:The little black dress.
OOJSF:What’s the difference between the way people dress in Paris versus people in London?
GR:I will say that people are more extravagant and colorful in London.Quirky concepts and unique combinations can be found on every London street. Paris is more conservative in a certain way. Women will frequently dress in a basic yet elegant skirt or short pants for the daytime.
OOJSF:What types of women do you dress?
GR:The modern and independent woman with a taste for fashion who is equally at ease in trainers as well as in high end pieces.
OOJSF:What should we look forward to from your line?
GR:The marriage of technology and fabrics.
OOJSF:You have lived in both Paris and London. What do you like about both cities? What do you dislike about both cities?
GR:They are constantly changing with new and exciting things sprouting up almost everyday. I love the feeling of being anonymous in those cities, but can make you feel sometimes lonely. There is a particular flavour to the loneliness that comes from living in a city, surrounded by millions of people.
OOJSF:For people wanting to visit London, what would you advise them to do, eat, and see?
GR:To visit Museums and art galleries which are FREE such as the likes of the Natural History Museum, The Science Museum, and The British Museum.
To go to some food markets, one of my favourite has to be Borough Market, head here around lunch time for a quick bite to eat and a little treat from one of the many dessert stalls.
To visit Camden Town is one of the very best neighbourhoods in London to explore
and Shoreditch, which is one of London’s trendiest neighbourhoods.
And of course, shopping on Oxford Street is a must.
OOJSF:For people visiting Paris, what would you advise them to do, eat, and see?
GR:I will advise them to visit Montmartre.
Paris is a showcase par excellence of French cuisine, so…
To eat: try bistros, Au Pied de Fouet in St-Germain or Bistrot Paul Bert in the 11e and cool neobistros like Racines 2 by the Louvre.
To see: Belleville and the famous Buttes de Chaumonts.
To do: The Big Bus Tour, a hop on/hop off bus that provided an audio guide and made stops at the most famous sights and attractions throughout the city. This is definitely the most efficient way to fit in a lot of stuff in a little bit of time and also got us acquainted with the city.
OOJSF: What captions describe you?
GR:I am strong, I am edgy,and I am fearless.
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Remember each jour is a perfect opportunity to VIVRE, ÊTRE, PARLER, FRANGLAIS!