Interview Cristiana Rivellino Santella
Portrait Thibaut Grevet
Acquaintances from back in the days of high school, it was just a few years later during a college economics class that Yoann and Romain would form a tight friendship. While casually chatting, “we decided to start printing t-shirts. It started out as nothing serious but it quickly turned into something real, something more ambitious. At the age of 22 and as time passes, the challenge becomes more and more exciting.” This is how Romain Sabatier, one of the two partners, describes their journey so far.
“The first t-shirt we printed was done in Lyon and while it was completely different than our product today, for us, it was a symbolic milestone!” Adds Yoann. “We really wanted to underline sportswear because we are living in a period where people are very active; in the big cities we live in, our lives revolve around public transportation, bikes and buses; we are increasingly in need of comfortable clothing that is not only functional but beautiful as well. We realized that we didn’t need to compromise sportswear, that it could combine all of these features while being basic and interesting all at the same time. Take sneakers for example, they were born out of necessity and yet they have a ton of different uses. Same thing goes for sweatshirts, times are changing and sportswear is no longer considered leisurewear. We strive for wearability and creating clothing that is suitable for any situation, which is why it was a conscious decision to avoid loud graphics or patterns: simplicity is the basis of our philosophy.
Their brand name not only revels irony but it also reflects the determination of Yoann and Romain. They were looking for something easy-going, something that would make you smile. And so, without any over thinking or precise motive, they decided upon sansnom, meaning “no-name”. Both claim to be inspired by the idea of comfort, well-being, functionality and details. “We are both captivated with Japan and the brands that are coming out of there. What is most fascinating about Japanese design is the way they mix technical fabrics, the innovation surrounding traditional tailoring and above all, the way they lovingly curate details. Aside from Japan, we are also fans of European and American streetwear culture.
A day in the life of Yoann and Romain begins early like many of their peers. Nothing out of the ordinary: work, friends, movies and sports divided by intervals of meetings, research and visiting clients. Perhaps this is what keeps them so grounded and in touch with reality. Two undoubtedly fortunate people who dream of one day seeing their flagships around the world, when asked what is their greatest satisfaction: “being able to work and travel with my best friend, the team we have created, and the passion we have for our work.”