BY FAR Founders
Founded by twin sisters, Sabrina and Valentina, and their best friend and sister-in-law Denitsa, By FAR is a Bulgarian brand that is making waves on a global scale for all the right reasons. The family business was established in 2016 and has since become a brand that is on every fashion girl’s wish list, as Hollywood celebrities and social media style influencers of the likes of Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Alicia Vikander, Jessica Kahawaty, Dana Hourani and Ola Farahat to name just a few, have been seen walking the streets in By FAR’s unique and practical styles.
It doesn’t come as any surprise that the sought-after label, that gives a nod to the 90s with its minimalist approach to shoe and handbag design, is in demand all over the world. By FAR offers up consciously sourced Italian materials, classic styles that merge vintage styles with modern sensibilities, and high-end quality at affordable prices.
This is the luxury accessories label that our wardrobes have been longing for and with the sky being the limit to what By FAR has to offer, we caught up with one of the three founders, Valentina, to find out more.
BY FAR is essentially a family business, between yourself, your sister Sabina and sister-in-law Denitsa, how did the idea to form your brand come about?
There was always a strong heritage of shoe craftsmanship in Bulgaria and when we visited by chance a small family-run factory, we really felt like it was destiny! We are still partnering with them but have expanded a lot. The idea behind the brand was to make cool shoes that are comfortable and make women feel like they conquer the world.
It must be wonderful to work with those you love, what are each of your roles in the business?
Denitsa is in charge of design, I (Valentina) look after the brand image and Sabina is the CEO.
Sabina Gyosheva, Valentina Bezuhanova, Denitsa Bumbarova
At a time when fashion is so diverse and there are so many trends, what are the factors that you consider when creating your shoe and bag designs?
BY FAR is really about timeless pieces that you will love and cherish. We often get inspired by movies and TV shows from the 90s and early 2000s. You would often find the whole team binge watching Friends and Sex & the City obsessing over their cool outfits. We look at our imagery/campaigns the same way, our current imagery is very much inspired by the vacation vibe of La Piscine. As soon as we saw it, we wanted to take everyone on this journey. In that sense, our mood boards are combinations of films and objects that create the specific feeling we're trying to portray.
Your minimalist and very much sought-after label has been seen on the likes of Hollywood A-listers including Priyanka Chopra as well as renowned social media influencers. Who was the BY FAR woman you had in mind when you first started creating the brand?
The BY FAR woman is confident and travels the world, so she needs accessories that will match and compliment a lot of outfits. But at the same time, she likes to have fun, feel sexy, go out with her girls and dance all night long, and have long romantic walks.
How would you say social media has impacted the growth of BY FAR?
We think Instagram was a game changer for the fashion industry. Small brands like ours could have global reach with the platform. It really feels like a community of friends. We are constantly talking with our clients and girls that inspire us and support the brand.
As 3 women with an increasingly successful brand and all the pressures that come with it, how do you find yourself overcoming obstacles you might face in such a competitive fashion industry?
Nothing feels more natural than designing for women as we know what we need, want and love! BY FAR is like our baby and of course, it takes a lot of efforts to grow it, but it’s also very rewarding. Seeing our bags and shoes on girls around the world and really feeling their love for BY FAR, it’s truly exciting for us!
Female entrepreneurs are always so inspiring because many are wives, mothers, and more, and still manage to run their own enterprises - who have been the women in your lives that have inspired you?
Throughout our journey we had been blessed to be mentored by so many strong women, but in the heart of it all are our mothers. They're always there to support us, especially at times when even we doubted ourselves.
It’s an admirable and reassuring fact that BY FAR uses ethical practices and dead stock leathers to create collections - tell us more about that and what made you want to take that route for your manufacturing process?
We see being ethical and sustainable as integral part of our business, and really of any business. The industry can’t any longer continue with the old ways of thinking in the short team. We believe in collaborating and supporting all our partners. It’s a journey that we have started together, but it’s also very inspirational and it really sparks a lot creative ideas.
What tips on ethical fashion can you share with women who are looking to take a more sustainable approach to fashion and shopping?
The truth is that fast fashion prices are not "inclusive", they're exploitative. If you don't have the budget, buy vintage or exchange pieces with your friends and family. The truth is making things properly is very expensive, but its 100% worth it! So, we urge everyone to please save for things you really love and will wear forever, and support brands that are doing it right.
Using dead stock leather also means that you might have limited quantities for particular styles, meaning that it might not always be possible to meet the demands of consumers. Do you see that as a strength or a weakness?
It’s really sources of inspiration and a journey to find the right leathers and materials. It’s like treasure hunting and sometimes we discover something special that will influence the whole collection. That’s really exciting for us, especially that it’s limited and really exclusive.
What are the quintessential BY FAR pair of shoes you think every woman should own?
We believe that every woman should own a pair of Sofia boots this season. They're handcrafted using soft thin goatling leather which sits on a comfy block heel. They're the perfect ankle boots that suits every kind of jeans.
Lastly, what can we expect from BY FAR in the near future? What’s next?
We have a lot of ideas and some special projects in our minds. And honestly, sky is the limit.