MEET PAR CIELLE W/ CIELLE
Par Cielle is a hand-crochet brand founded in 2018 by Australian born, Paris based, Cielle Marchal. Influenced by a free and unique upbringing in the Australian and French nature, with a connection and respect for these surroundings that inspires the creation of items that integrate with the natural world. We chatted to Cielle about what influences her work and how to create intentionally.
"It is [the] connection and respect for nature that inspires me to create items that will integrate with the natural world."
What 2 words best describe Par Cielle?
Honest / Imaginative
When did you start Par Cielle, and what inspired you to?
Par Cielle was founded in 2018 as a way to remember the Australian warmth and spirit during my first cold winters in Paris, France. My very first project was to create a sun wall hanging in yellow merino wool, which I then placed on my head and it became a hat - the birth of the first Ray Hat!
I’m mostly influenced by my free and unique upbringing in the Australian and French nature. It is this connection and respect for nature that inspires me to create items that will integrate with the natural world.
Tell us about the team behind the brand.
As of 3 years, the team consists of me, Cielle Marchal. I do however have a very strong support team, from my boyfriend, who helps with logistics and a lot of French paperwork, to my group of very talented and creative friends who help with shoots and content.
What’s playing on the office / studio stereo?
A lot of funk/groove/soul music and a lot of podcasts! Making one crochet item takes hours, so I have a lot of time to listen to a lot of material.
When it’s nice out, I open the doors to my garden and listen to the birds. I work from home and am very fortunate to have a garden here in Paris, so I indulge in the sounds of nature as much as I can.
We define good design as ‘making positive impact on people and the planet a key input in the design stage’. How do you approach this at Par Cielle?
Right now I am trying my hardest to source and produce every element of my business sustainably, from the G.O.T.S certified cotton, to every element of packaging and labelling (which are all recycled/recyclable), so that all elements can eventually be re-used or biodegrade into the earth.
It is however not only the materials you use but also the intention put into the creation of every product. It is knowing how an item can elevate a mood, make a by passer smile or inspire others to create.
To champion transparency, we always ask designers - what would you like to do better, or are you working on improving?
The major area I would like to improve is my cotton sourcing. Even though the cotton I currently use is G.O.T.S certified, it is still sourced from China. The mileage it takes, to get that cotton to me, in Paris, weighs heavily on my conscience.
I would very much like to find a cotton supplier within Europe to keep emissions down and support local cotton suppliers.
Where is Par Cielle going in the future?
My business has grown very organically since the start. I started making pieces just for friends, then through Instagram and now I work with PARO Store and have an up coming collaboration in Australia.
My next steps will be sourcing some help making the products, expanding my market throughout Europe and working to find some more local cotton suppliers. I would love to start branching out into clothing and crochet art installations.
As we all know, the fashion industry as a whole is responsible for huge environmental and social issues. How would you like to see the industry change and progress?
The decentralisation of fashion. Moving our focus from mega brands/platforms and more integration of small, honest, transparent brands within the mainstream view. A larger focus on certification and regulation in the industry is also a must. This all depends on the customer though! Brands only produce what the customer is asking for; this is why it is so important to use your dollar for change!
What advice would you give to people who want to be more responsible when they’re shopping?
For me, it is taking the extra time to search for a product that could be found locally, instead of buying from a more convenient platform, like Amazon for example. It’s getting out of the routine, idle way of thinking and putting more intention into your purchases – finding a product that really speaks to you and exploring/connecting with your immediate surroundings and the creators who inhabit small nooks of your neighbourhood that you would have never thought to visit before.
You can explore and shop the Par Cielle collection here.