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The Finer Things

Celine Hakoun, founder and CEO of 3-2-1 Framboise, on doing the research, loving the process and never settling.

EURO CLASS I exclusively purchase labels designed in Europe. If a brand is manufactured in China, I’m not interested. While it may seem picky, it’s a formula that works. The strict filtering of brands from the get-go allows me to confidently provide exceptional quality and superior design, season after season.     

CORNERSTONE COLLECTIONS Customers demand a lot of variety, which is hard to provide on a six-month cycle. To satisfy this craving for newness, more brands are offering permanent collections. This has been so helpful to refresh looks more regularly. It’s also been a positive for my budget!

TRICKS OF THE TRADE SHOW I do tons of homework before I attend any show. I’ll research every exhibitor, look at reviews to see what people are saying online and ultimately, I’ll compile a list of booths to hit. If you don’t do this before a show, you’re probably wasting a lot of valuable time and missing some really spectacular finds.

Home Runs


Dresses

La Queue du Chat

Shower Gifts

Little Label

Girls’ Playwear

Petit Lucas du Tertre

Boys’ Playwear

Arsène et les Pipelettes

EXPORT ADVICE If you’re not careful, a new season can end up a customs nightmare. Just because European designers are willing to bring their collections stateside doesn’t mean they’ve completed the tedious process and paperwork it takes to do so. Even if I fall in love with a new label, I’ll wait patiently for a year before purchasing it. It’s better to sit out the first round than put yourself at risk.

STORYTIME I’ve noticed a growing appreciation for craftsmanship and authenticity among my customers, which is incredibly exciting as a buyer. It allows me to uncover the heart and soul behind a collection and convey that story. A recent example is a modern, well-structured line I spotted at Playtime Paris. Turns out it was designed by two former architects. What a cool selling point!

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