We talked to BONTON founder
Irène about many things.
Tell me about the Bonton brand concept.
When Bonton was formed in 2001, we felt that children's clothing was available in a limited range of colors, and wanted to breathe new life into them.
When developing the shop concept, we decided that, in addition to picture books and other goods, we wanted to be not just a western style clothing brand, but a brand that represented all the children of the world.
Tell us about the aspects of manufacturing you consider important.
Our priority is to fuse a beautiful appearance with practicality. While bearing in mind the purpose and needs of clothing made to be worn day to day, we try to create clothing that will please not just kids, but mums and dads, too.
From where do you draw your inspiration for your sharp fashion and interior design sensibilities?
We are always drawing inspiration from countless places, but frequent sources are art exhibitions and films; works in which you can discover themes and which tell stories. Our color usage draws on those stories. It's much like opening a picture book as a child. We hope that you, too, will experience the story of the Bonton world just as though opening a picture book.
You also create super stylish ensembles. What do you pay attention to when coordinating clothing?
We endeavor to keep in mind the current themes and story, and create an ensemble that is in accord with those ideas.
The Bonton brand is not just about fashion, but suggests an entire lifestyle. What do you think are the most important aspects of a family and child rearing oriented lifestyle?
Though we don't just think in terms of parenting, we believe that the changing of the seasons and major events are important parts of the relationship between parents and their children. Our lifestyle is about how you spend those moments together. We believe deepening your shared bonds with each other is truly indispensable.
I hear that your team contains staff members with young children. Do you have any measures to make things easier for these mums and dads?
There are no special rules in place, but we are flexible on a case by case basis, allowing for parents to bring their children to the office, etc. As our office contains picture books and toys, kids can enjoy themselves here, too. Since kids also assist us in the trial of new products, it's almost like a test lab in here!
From all the baby bottle brands, you chose to partner with Bétta. Why is that?
Since breast feeding is encouraged in France, baby bottle usage is a little uncommon. However, we found that the posture used when using a Bétta bottle, as well as the bottle's nipples, are very close to real breast feeding, and will be held onto by a baby just as if it were Mom's breast.
As a Japanese made product, they are also very high quality. In terms of attention paid details like to color usage, functionality, and packaging, too, they are a perfect match for the Bonton concept.
Tell us about the concept and look of this BONTON baby bottle.
For this collaboration, we wanted a basic design. Specifically, something that was unisex, gentle, versatile, and suited for any season. Our next project may exhibit a more free design.
Any comment for all the BONTON fans back in Japan?
Rather, we are fans of Japan! Our Japanese fans always take the most notice and give us the best response regarding our attention to detail. Thank you!
What spots in Paris do your staff recommend?
We highly recommend the Chez Marcel restaurant! Parents and children can have a great time there. Of course, since Paris has a culture of parks and gardens, the Jardin du Luxembourg is also wonderful. And, though it would be a shame to choose just one museum, the Grand Palais also comes recommended. The building is beautiful, and kids can play there too. Being able to learn while you have fun is what France is all about!