12 / 03 / 2015
We interviewed Madeleine, one of the founders of the online vintage and second- hand clothes store www.sixsoeurs.fr, in her Paris apartment.
Hi Madeleine! Tell us a bit about yourself !
When I tell people my name’s Madeleine, they normally say « oh, that’s my
grandmother’s name ! ». It’s kind of nice and gives me a certain « she must be a
nice person » advantage in life!
I’m 37, and I have 6 sisters and 3 children. I grew up in Normandy but have lived
in Paris since I was 17. I founded Sixsœurs, an online fashion store, with
Tell us about Sixsœurs. What’s the concept behind the name?
Sixsœurs is a very welcoming store selling a gorgeous selection of carefully
chosen second-hand and vintage pieces. We also provide a service organizing
vintage and designer second-hand clothes sales in people’s homes. But what we
are most known for is our Sixsœurs Atelier, a range of custom-made leather handbags made from vintage leather bought in markets and second-hand
clothes shops. Each bag is very unique.
When did you and your sisters decide that you wanted to go into business
It happened very naturally really. We always loved going to markets and second-
hand clothes shops together. And we loved making our own little bags and other
bits and pieces. So at one point, it seemed obvious to try and turn what we loved
doing into a business idea.
What is your professional background?
I had my first daughter when I was at university (she’s almost 17!), so I
abandoned my studies and started working in TV production (documentaries
and news items). I was the production director when the agency I was working
for closed down, but I felt ready to go it on my own and set up my own company.
For a while I thought about designing my own range of handbags and opening a
concept store. But my sister Suzanne and I finally decided to start an online store
as we weren’t sure we wanted to be “stuck” in a shop all day. With our online
store, we are free to do what we like and sell second-hand and vintage pieces as
well as our own handbag designs.
What did you want to be when you were a little girl?
When I was little I wanted to be a journalist or have a market stall selling
antiques or work in fashion. I thought about going to fashion school, but when I
was 20 and had my first daughter, I decided to do something more “serious”. But
in the end, I ended up going back to what I really wanted to do in the first place!
One last question, what are you working on at the moment?
I’m currently working on designing a range of clothes that will be available in the
spring on www.sixsœurs.fr.Each piece will manufactured in France using
traditional hand-crafted methods, like our bags.
Photo © Sessùn