24 February, 2020 In conversation with Sarah-Jane Abrahams & Helle Them-Enger, co-founders of Faithfull the Brand We sit down with co-founders Sarah-Jane Abrahams and Helle Them-Enger to find out more about how the pair met on the Island of Bali and brought Faithfull the Brand to life.

mode sportif faithfull the brand

DSO: It’s inspiring to see how your brand supports local communities and families in Bali. Can you tell us a little bit about how and why you came to choose Indonesia as your destination for sourcing materials and production?


SA & HT: Thank you. In a way we feel that Bali chose us, it is where we met and where FAITHFULL THE BRAND came to life. We knew when we were starting out that we wanted to create a business that represented the same morals we have, to give opportunities to local communities and to encourage local artisans and their work.


DSO: Tell us a bit about the hand-dying and hand-printing techniques used your production process.


SA & HT: The production of each Faithfull garment is a special process. Our collections are produced entirely in Bali, Indonesia, using handmade techniques such as hand-dying and hand-printing. We love the process of hand-dying and hand-printing, and we have worked with closely our print and dye factories for almost a decade now. It has been so exciting to see our business grow together. Many of the FAITHFULL THE BRAND prints are inspired by our findings in vintage markets & along our travels.


Each print is unique and therefore shares a special story from the garment’s history and country of origin. In this way, travel plays a role in our patterns, when we either discover a rare and beautiful print oversees or in an exotic, unexpected location. Once we decide on a print, a digital artwork is created and converted into a film-screen for printing. We have to make one film-screen for each colorway in a print. Each print created is unique to FAITHFULL THE BRARND and entirely hand printed taking two technicians to pull the screen across the fabric.


Each colorway needs to dry before the next colorway is applied which makes hand-printing a long process – especially when we do our multi coloured florals such as the Venissa Floral print. Once all colorways are applied, the fabric gets washed and hung up to dry in the shade over big bamboo sticks. Our dye house works in a similar way – all colours are mixed and applied to the fabric by hand. Its then washed and dried in a similar way as our hand-print fabrics.


DSO: Can you talk us through your creative process when designing a new collection? How do you go about bringing the initial idea or concept of a collection to fruition?


SA & HT: When we work on designing a new collection we always firstly work on the moodboard and theme for the collection. As a brand so invested in travel we always take our inspiration from a particular travel destination – we envision what muse would travel to this destination, what styles, print and colours would she wear.


For the collection RIVIERA we drew the inspiration from St Tropez. In the late 1950’s, French starlet and collection muse, Brigitte Bardot, travelled to St Tropez to shoot And God Created Woman, the iconic film which rose Bardot to fame, and forged her love affair with the Côte d'Azur. The glistening Mediterranean was the perfect backdrop for her glamorous style and soon became an idyllic playground for celebrities and socialites alike. Brigitte Bardot and her style really inspired this collection – making it a celebration of femininity, with soft, romantic undertones, featuring 50’s inspired florals and prints in a sweetly-toned palette, highlighting lady-like silhouettes and romantic detailing.


DSO: We love Marianne Faithfull, how did she come to be the inspiration for your brand name?


SA & HT: We chose the name FAITHFULL THE BRAND for its warm, feminine appeal. Marianne Faithfull is known for her freewheeling and feminine look that perfectly encapsulates the style of the 1960s – her style really radiates an effortless cool that is inspiring our every collection. When we work on new collections we always draw inspiration from the 1960 and 70s – from the likes of Brigitte Bardot, Francoise Hardy and jane Birkin. Marianne Faithfull was one that particularly we fell in love with from the beginning. She was and is fearless and always walked to the beat of her own drum which we found so inspiring.


DSO: Coming from two totally different backgrounds, Australian and Scandinavian, how have you managed to find a synergy between these two cultures and styles in your designs?


SA & HT: Although we were born and raised on opposite sides of the world, we are actually very similar. We love to travel and always have done, we share a strong interest for culture, art, fashion, mindfulness and we are incredibly hard and passionate workers. Our style represents what we love which naturally mirrors our designs for the FAITHFULL girl.


DSO: Travel plays an important role in your design process. Can you pinpoint one place in the world where you have drawn the most inspiration from? Why?


SA & HT: It is quite challenging to highlight just one place in the world as we travel so often and to such different cultures. What we truly draw inspiration from each season is our FAITHFULL girls, who they are, where they are travelling to and how they would like to dress.


DSO: Aside from travel and exploring new destinations, what else inspires your collections? Are there any artists, public figures or others that you draw inspiration from?


SA & HT: We find inspiration in so many different ways, we love referencing the past, diving deep into history and vintage books – muses from the 50’s – 70’s, art and music. This collection that has just launched was in fact mostly inspired by Bridgette Bardot when she first visited the French Riviera.


DSO: How would describe each of your personal styles? How are they reflected in your designs?


SA & HT: We are both quite similar in our own personal style, we are seemingly effortless, a love for vintage finds and mixing them back with current staples. This is how we envision one way for the FAITHFULL girl to dress – another is pairing her pieces in a more PM and occasion style. You will most often see us in a pair of classic blue jeans paired back with a FAITHFULL top and neutral coloured sandal.


DSO: If you could choose one hero piece from the Mode Edit, which would it be? How would you style it?


SA & HT: The Chaumont Shirt and Celia Skort are such an exciting addition to the FAITHFULL offering. You will see us wearing this set paired back with a tan sandal or white heel, some pearl earrings or a little gold hoop.


DSO: As female designers and business owners, do you feel that you can carry important messages through your collections?


SA & HT: As female designers and business owners we strive to run FAITHFULL THE BRAND (in all areas of the business) as thoughtfully and considered as possible. We have a range of platforms where we can now reach an audience wider than ever before and because of this we are constantly open to global topics and conversations.

mode sportif faithfull the brand

mode sportif faithfull the brand

mode sportif faithfull the brand

mode sportif faithfull the brand

Photography: Faithfull the Brand Exclusive BTS

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