Centrel Commercial is a boutique like no other. Located in Paris’s 10e arrondissement, owner / operator Sébastien Kopp has designed a dream space that delicately merges fashion with a devout sense of social commitment. We were thrilled to have to opportunity to catch up with Sébastien and share an inside peak into his life & work.
Tell us a little about Centre Commercial. Your shop is so lovely. Was it a challenge to find the right space in the city?
I searched for a space for 2 years. We did almost a year of renovation and had all the problems of the world before starting, but I knew this place, this spot, had something since the beginning. It was quite easy to find, because I wanted one & only one street. I spent a long time banging at all the doors of the street to know if a store was free. The “rue” de Marseille, for me, was one of the most charming street of Paris: quite, small and facing the canal with no end & with open skies. I’m in love with the ultra white building at the starting corner of the street & facing our store.
The shop space carries more than just clothing. Bicycles. Furniture. Art. Can you tell us a bit about the concept?
We wanted to gather projects more than brands lead by individuals that are making their own path. The clothing selection mixes high aesthetics with [an interest in] the way clothes or shoes are made. We only select brands that “care,” brands that look how the production is made. We call that involved brands that are “taking back” production. The last 50 years brands have tried to hide production, how the things are made, to put advertising in front & create virtual stories. We are the generation that is taking back the place that production deserves : the heart. We believe our generation (30’s) are fed up with fast fashion, fed up with an economy that destroys & exploits more than it creates. With Veja & Centre Commercial we want to build something else.
How were you first introduced to Fidelity Sportswear? What qualities caught your attention?
We are addicted to military clothing since childhood. We love the “use over look”, the fact that clothing may have a function before just looking good. And the fact that the brand [Fidelity] takes back to life old & forgotten pieces and the fact that it is made in the USA in their own factory.
What has been your best selling Fidelity garment? What is your personal favorite from the AW14 collection?
The coats, the coats, the coats ! I think everybody in the Centre Commercial team has one !
Tell us more about the shop’s involvement with art, architecture & philosophy. How do you see the shop’s interests expanding in the future?
We try to put our thoughts & [personal] philosophy in what we do. This is the principle of creation itself, put a bit of yourself in what you do. Looking back at our close past, we put everything of ourselves in what we do.
Describe the neighborhood around your shop. Do you have a favorite café and pattiserie?
I love the Café de La Marine. It’s the best place to have a drink at night in front of the Canal Saint Marin. There is also Ten Bells, a coffee shop with amazing baristas and the pizzeria of the Marie Lousie place is delicious.
What are some of your favorite things to do in Paris? Best places to eat? Best museums to visit?
I love the Pause Café on rue de Charonne, where I met love a few years ago. Love the hidden spots. Love to have a coffee on the bench of the store with friends.
Merci beaucoup à Sébastien et tous. If you don’t have the chance to visit their shop this autumn, be sure to check out the website here!