Remember the buzz of a busy office? A college classroom? We’re easing back into that IRL feeling this fall, and what better way to celebrate dipping our toes back into business than with a fresh fit A born-in-Paris clothing maker, ba&sh, has a look for every day of the week; we chatted with founders Barbara and Sharon to get the skinny on their brand and their top style recommendations for the season. —Noa Nichol
Hi Barbara and Sharon! Please tell us a bit about yourselves to start!
SK: Barbara grew up in Saint-Germain-en-Laye and I lived in Paris when we met in high school. We were introduced to one another through a mutual friend.
BB: Sharon hosted me in her apartment in Paris while we were both travelling back-and-forth to Arcueil for a week-long test. We hardly knew each other and Sharon agreed to host me so I wouldn’t have to travel so far. We’ve been inseparable since!
When and why did you launch ba&sh? (By the way, we LOVE the mash-up name!)
BB: Neither of us started our careers working in fashion; Sharon worked in law and I worked in PR. We both became young moms around the same time and dedicated ourselves to our families. After we both had our second child, we realized we wanted to work together and create something special together.
SK: Ba&sh was founded from a shared love for clothing, a desire to bring to life our dream wardrobe for all women. In 2003, we met our partner, Dan Arrouas, who owned a company that produced various ready-to-wear brands. He asked us to take a plunge and in return, he would help bring our dream to live.
What niche were/are you aiming to fill in the fashion space (and, when it comes to your website, the online shopping space)? What is your brand philosophy?
BB: At the time we launched, affordable luxury didn’t exist—we were aiming to create a new market for shoppers, one that fit between fast fashion and luxury. Today, our vision is to be a one-stop-shop for all occasions, for all types of women.
SK: Nothing is pretend at ba&sh. Our philosophy is to be 100 per cent authentic for our clients, following our own desires, intuition and pace.
Founded in Paris, ba&sh style is now available and worn around the world! How do you maintain a sense of Parisian style in your offerings while being a global brand?
SK: We’ve remained very consistent in our style since day one. Parisian style is effortless, feminine, authentic—which we continue to carry from beginning to end with our collections, our people, our values. We are and always will be undeniably Parisian!
Please tell us more about the brand’s commitment to gender equality, sustainability and giving back.
BB: Ba&sh was built upon the foundation that we wanted to be very community engaged and to always help the most disadvantaged, and we continue this mission almost 20 years later. We donate fabrics, clothes, money to various organizations whose causes we align with in our markets around the world. We launched our sustainability initiative in 2017 but choose to not speak about it until we were 100 per cent ready this past year—because it’s not about putting yourself forward but helping those who need it.
SK: One of our biggest givebacks is our charity T-shirt we design every year, from which 100 per cent of profits are donated to a non-profit organization. We find a cause we are touched by personally and our mission begins.
What’s your personal style mantra, and how does it inform your brand?
BB: To always feel beautiful and happy in what we put on. We are real women with jobs, children, busy lives … we want a versatile wardrobe that women, in all their diversity, can easily make their own. All these qualities, we make sure are in every piece in our collections.
Any insights as to what is currently hot on the ba&sh roster for fall/winter 2021? Top current bestsellers as we head into the colder months?
SK: Skirts! As we slowly return to normalcy in our lives, we are looking to get dressed up again but don’t want to give up comfort. Our skirts, such as the Gellio, are feminine and versatile while remaining easy-to-wear and comfortable.
BB: Loose fit denim, such as our Soul jeans. Paired with a chunky sweater such as our Bosco and your favourite sneakers it’s the perfect casual fall look. Swap out the sneakers for heels and sweater for a blouse and it’s a great going-out option!
Win! A $500 ba&sh Prize Pack!
Congrats Holly K. of Ayr, ON, who will receive $500 worth of ba&sh pieces of their choice! Please note: if you are the winner, you will receive a DM (direct message) in Instagram directly from @vitadaily.ca. Please be wary of fake accounts, which often use similar handles with an extra or missing letter, number or symbol. We will never ask for a payment or for your credit card number, and we will never ask you to click through a link. If you are unsure whether you have been contacted, via Instagram, by us or a fake account, email us before responding.