The first shop I noticed when I arrived on the streets of Brussels was Stijl. I had heard about this place and it certainly didn’t disappoint, stocking all favourite designers like Raf, Haider, and Ann; and not their most commercial garments, that have lost their excitement from the runway, like we seem to do here in London. It’s exciting flipping through the racks and makes you totally fall in love with design.
In London we could learn a thing or two from Sonja Noël; the razor sharp buyer with an eye for creative talent, that opened Brussels first fashion mecca, Stijl, 20 years ago. Last year Sonja opened a new set of doors, Haleluja. It’s impeccably designed space features hand picked designers from all over the world, creating sustainable garments, from ethically sourced cottons and silks to recycling.
Sonja told me that as an entrepreneur you have to be bold and take risks, starting a new business takes years and years to build up and she’s ready for a new challenge. Halaluja is doing something truly revolutionary to fashion: proving that ethically sourced eco-friendly pieces are also desirable, contemporary and high fashion. After all, “sustainable clothes have to be desirable products, otherwise there’s no point in selling them.”