Finding the perfect tuxedo is a plight we’ve all grappled with. For Racil Chalhoub, this lifelong search came to a head in 2015, inspiring her to take matters into her own hands and – as she describes it – follow her dreams.

Transitioning from fashion buying into the arena of design, Racil is backed with years of industry knowledge for what women really want. The result? Sleek eveningwear and tailoring cut from Savile Row fabrics and imbued with Parisian insouciance.

For the Fall/Winter 2018 collection (presented in Bar Hemingway, The Ritz and styled by Because Magazine’s Caroline Issa), colour-blocked iterations of ‘Le Smoking’ and obsidian-inspired separates were out in full force. While the cleansing and grounding gemstone set the pace for the season (need we remind you of the myriad healing powers of crystals?), boldly beautiful designs threw us back to the decadence of Studio 54 and the golden age of Hollywood – with choice pieces dedicated to the leading ladies of the time.

Following what was the brand’s first official presentation on the Paris Fashion Week calendar, we spoke to Racil to get her backstory on the collection. 

How did you come by obsidian as your initial inspiration?
I'm a strong believer in crystals and their healing properties – I have them scattered all over my house and office, and will never leave home or travel without them. I also love giving them away, as they make for really meaningful presents. 

The name of the collection actually came about at the end of the design process. We were looking at the colour palette and things that inspire us, and ‘Obsidian’ was thrown around. The stone is a creative, powerful and protective force with truth-enhancing and balancing properties; it’s meant to form a shield against the negativity of today’s chaotic world. It is usually black with purple nuances, so it felt in-line with the theme of the collection and the hues of our floral print. During the presentation, we gave obsidian stones away as gifts.

Further to the obsidian reference, iconic women from history – from Marlene Dietrich to Audrey Hepburn – are also name-checked by certain pieces in the collection...
I watched a lot of old movies during the holidays – and that’s where the inspiration came from. Those women are just so stunning! I love how strong and feminine they are. Their beauty is natural and so full of character; they’re simultaneously authentic and imperfect, which is my definition of ‘perfection'. Dressing in a way that makes you feel beautiful is far more important than just following trends.

What makes the perfect suit?
A good suit is everything! It makes a woman feel confident and therefore empowered – yet it also feels like a shield somehow. The best styles are incredibly versatile and can take you from day to night, which is what we want in this day and age. The choice of fabric and fit are essential to making the perfect suit, and I love attention to detail in the buttons or internal trimmings. That adds a luxurious touch.

I'm all about contrast, and mixing and matching. A classic ‘Le Smoking’ is timeless, effortless and always elegant. By mixing it with more contemporary pieces like a casual T-shirt and trainers, you completely modernise it and bring it up to speed. 

As you wait with bated breath to shop Racil's
 Fall/Winter offering, snap up the Spring/Summer collection below: