Freshly opened streetwear boutique Isakin, tucked away on a Montmartre street shared with the APC surplus store, is the brainchild of two superfly ex-record label execs, Alex and Thomas. Counting the likes of French rapstar Oxmo Puccino among their friends, the skateboarding, hip-hop-loving duo have drawn on their marketing and art direction expertise - as well as their solid network - to create this small gem of a shop, stocking a range of young labels mostly from France - many even from the 18th arrondissement itself. On the racks are cork-lined caps from up-and-coming brand CHMPGN - its name a vowel-less hommage to the fizzy wine region in which it was founded; threads from Paris label Poyz and Pirlz, set up by a collective of hip hop DJs; cheeky tees and caps from local label EyexCon (many of which are emblazoned with the word crapule, meaning scoundrel); and sweatshirts from neighbouring designers Paris Nord. Cult items have already emerged: Disney-style Sacre Coeur logo t-shirts, Belleville Hills sweatshirts and the shop's own creation of tops with "Barbès parle Arabe" (meaning Barbès - the area around the corner from the boutique - speaks Arab). The shop exclusively stocks menswear but Alex explains that, following the success of many items with customers' girlfriends, they are now putting an accent on how girls can style these male garments to look sharp, too.
Isakin, 9 rue André del Sarte, Paris 75018
all photos © Kim Laidlaw