Meet monkeybeau // Francois Du Chastel

Francois du Chastel Showroom Portrait-1

This young aristocrat from Paris has dropped his career as an investment banker in order to pursue a fashion business, designing shoes for women. Sounds crazy? Well, Francois creates stylish flats that even the likes of Pippa Middleton and Duchess Kate can’t resist. It has got to be said, this Frenchman got sole!

I heard there is a love story behind those slippers…

Chatelles began as a love story, I fell in love and offered the girl a pair of slippers that I designed with a verse by Victor Hugo embossed in the inner sole “I cannot remain…far away from you any longer”. It worked – she fell in love with the shoes, broke up with me and left with the slippers.

Do you ever miss your old job of being an investment banker?

Not at all! Fashion is so much nicer and more fun than banking, although there is actually a huge amount of work as well.

You started your business online but have recently opened up a shop in downtown Paris – do you think the trend goes back to real shops?

Well I think that today being strong online is necessary (and it’s cheaper than a real shop!). But in order to build a brand, having a flagship store is a prerequisite too. 

There are plenty of Instagram pics on your website. Can anyone tag their Chatelles and get onto your page?

Of course! Social media is the key – especially Instagram, simply follow and tag @chatelles_slippers and #chatelles

So you are a social media kind of person?

I am getting into it. It’s quite fun to post on Instagram and generate some buzz. Also social media fills a need to keep the public up to date on your brand.

Which Instagram accounts do you follow?

@stylethemonkey of course (!), @voguegermany, @kristina_bazan and @dakotajohnsons

Every style of shoe on your website stands for a person – are they really based on your friends?

Yes and I am also quite imaginative, we wanted to name the styles after cool French names instead of having purely boring and descriptive names.

Pippa Middelton is a very good friend of yours and loves wearing Chatelles. What is her favourite style and did you ever give her a pair for Kate?

Yes, Pippa is a big fan of Honore and Germain and Kate has got a couple of pairs as well. 

Who would you like to see wearing your slippers?…and which celebrities already haven been wearing them?

Actress Dakota Johnson, blogger Kristina Bazan and Pippa Middleton are already wearing my creations as well as many other beautiful girls, whom we hope to make happy with them.

Heels vs. loafers, what makes the flats sexy?

Effortless chic! Flats allow girls to shine while being comfy at the same time.

What music currently plays on your iPhone?

Andhim is on repeat. They are a German DJ duo from Cologne – a must listen!

How does your day generally start?

The first thing I make when I wake up is a hot lemon tea! It’s simply refreshing and wakes me up 🙂

What does a perfect weekend look like?

My perfect weekend contains some quality time with friends, ideally somewhere in the countryside.

Something you can not live without…

…that has to be: running my own company

Do you have general styling advice, for both, men and women?

Be effortless! don’t try too hard and NO total looks please, it s just too much to handle.

Describe your style in a few words…

Easy and simple, no logo-branding, excellent quality leather shoes or some good old Converse.

Are you an adventurer?

Shit yes!

Have you ever met a monkey?

Oui, today!…and I love it.

What do you think about these creatures?

They are pure awesomeness – witty and funny!

What was the creaziest thing you have ever done?

I dropped banking to launch an online woman shoe label, while I had no clue about fashion.

Looking at facebook, we have one friend in common, do you believe in six degrees of separation?

Friends of my friends are my friends!

If you could meet anyone dead or alive, who would it be?

Steve Jobs!

What is your most favourite place in the world and why?

Paris, because there is beauty everywhere.

What are your top three go to places in Paris?

Le Varenne for a coffee, La belle epoque for dinner and Raspoutine for a bit of action.

Tell us something we didn’t yet know about you…

I love cooking, especially venison.


Image courtesy of Francois Du Chastel

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