See You Store, a social concept-store made in Versailles
See You Store is the story of two young lads from Versailles who wanted to bring a bit of temerity to a town too often overloaded with clichés. It’s also the story of a social concept-store, where sharing is essential. We met up and had a chat with these two fashion and novelty enthusiasts.
Hello! See You, a shop created by two friends, saw the light in 2011. How did you come up with the idea?
Two good old lads from Versailles! We met in secondary school, and over time, as we got to know each other, we came up with the same idea: to create a business… in Versailles if possible! There has never been much on offer here concerning clothes. We wanted to create something new, like you see in Paris or abroad, and get this town, all too often caricaturised with clichés, moving.
What does the name of your shop, “See You”, mean?
The official version is what we want to say to anyone who understands the shop’s concept and is curious; the person who, one day, wanted to push open our front door and learn why we decided to choose this or that brand. We can’t tell you the unofficial version!
You created the shop in Versailles only four years ago. What were the beginnings like?
We lacked experience, which rendered the task a little harder than anticipated… We needed to quickly correct some errors we’d made and learn to get to know our clientele better. For example, we had a mixed selection for three years; today, we deal exclusively with menswear. It’s a lot simpler for us, we enjoy it a lot more and that means there’s twice as much on offer for men! The shop had a very warm welcome as well, and we quickly built up a faithful and eager clientele.
You want your shop to be a lively place, a place for expression. Why is this social aspect important to you?
That’s true! We quickly wanted to establish that social side. A “concept store” doesn’t just boil down to a simple selection of clothes or accessories. We like discovering new brands, new concepts, and we enjoy sharing them with our friends and our clients even more. At the moment, we’re exhibiting Eloi de La Monneraye’s photos in the shop, kind of like what Olow does, we try to promote the artists of our area. He did a beautiful series on Normandy for us, it enabled us to share and rekindle our common origins.
Like Olow, you’re very interested in music and art. What song or genre represents your shop best?
Ah well! Seeing as we’re in the shop five to six days a week, 9 hours a day, we do tend to listen to quite a lot of stuff! It all depends on our moods; the music is quite eclectic because we tend to differ quite a lot on that matter. From rap to French music, we go through it all. We like to listen to quite a few music blogs as well; right now we’ve got Banana Radio on all the time at the shop. If we had to choose one song today it would have to be a live recording of Tame Impala. It’s impossible to remain insensitive to a band we’ve been following since 2008, when they signed to Modular!
You’re a multi-brand shop; how do you choose the clothes and accessories you want to sell?
Above all, we look for brands that have a history, brands that have their very own style. We like knowing the beginning of a brand and its guiding line. Another important aspect: the manufacturing, if possible in France, or at least in Europe. Our clients have been paying more and more attention to that detail. And finally, the chemistry we have with the creator(s); we often favour that connection, or the human aspect, if you prefer.
You launched your e-shop last year. What did that change about the way you work?
It’s in the continuity of the shop so no big changes really, apart from the fact there’s a lot more work now. We had to learn how to manage it, organise photo shoots, the dispatches and everything else… We’re satisfied with the results.
Do you have any exciting projects in the coming months?
Ever since we stopped our Women’s department, we’ve had a lot of requests from disappointed ladies who want us to open a See You exclusively for women. We’re not there yet, and we have quite a few more projects in mind, but it’s a little early to start talking about them!
Find See You Store 21 Rue des Réservoirs, 78000 Versailles, France.