All eyes on A.CHAL
You both have a background in label designing. How has your creative process changed since starting your own brand?
It’s more collaborative. Creating a new brand is like creating a new handwriting together. In a label you have to think about someone else’s handwriting but here it is our own. It’s also more about shifting the focus away from the idea of designing for someone else. We love being able to have the creative freedom to create our own story and signature.
Your AW17 collection features subtle Indian motifs and prints. What drew you to this specific style and culture?
We have always been drawn and obsessed with antique cloths from around the world, so it felt like a very natural and easy start sourcing and developing cloths and embroidered pieces. Indian textile is primarily cotton, which naturally became the foundation of our brand. There is just not anything more comfortable and versatile than cotton to explore the craftsmanship behind design.
We visited India last year and were very much inspired by the lightness of their garbs, colours and prints, dimly lit markets and found amazing vintage saris. India is also part of [cofounder] Fiona [Bansel’s] heritage.
Describe the Belize Officiel woman.
Globally versed, confident, in touch with the world and themselves, considered and universal. Educated, curious.
Your collections are obviously influenced by traveling. What are your favorite places to travel to, whether for work or for a quick escape?
We love to explore dynamic and contrasting cultures to our own (Jamaica/ India/ Morocco and Mexico) but we are just as inspired by France´s coasts on a fresh spring day. We love the seas, the countryside and the parks for the beautiful inspiration.
What’s the best thing about what you do?
Creating our clothes. It is the ease and comfort of each piece and using an international approach to creating new distinct uniforms and the freedom to explore that idea together.
What’s the next move for Belize?
Building the team. Every collection is a new adventure, a new focus and re-birth.