- Your name: Alison Chow
- Website: Coco Ribbon
- Facebook : Coco Ribbon
- Your occupation: Creative Director
- Place of residence: Sydney
Describe your label
Coco Ribbon is a fashion and lifestyle brand of bohemian-luxe fashion and chic gifts with heart which exists to indulge and inspire those who believe life is too short for ordinary. Think luxe fabrics, bespoke opulent prints, embellishments, sequin jackets and maxi dresses.
Who does your label appeal to?
Women who are not afraid to stand out from the crowd – who love luxe fabrics and flamboyant prints. She is feminine, confident and believes life is too short for ordinary. And she wants unique pieces that will become treasured favourites.
Why do you think your work is loved by your customers?
The colours, the prints, the fabrics, the embellishments and the feminine silhouettes. The clothes are beautiful, feel luxe on the body and usually have an element of uniqueness or surprise to them – like a flash of unexpected orange as a sash on a blue print dress
Who would you most like to see in your designs?
I can’t think of anyone more beautiful that I would like to see wearing my label right now than Rosie Huntington-Whiteley.
What is the price range of your garments / products?
$195 – $995
How many collections do you produce per year?
Where is the label manufactured?
UK, India, Scotland for cashmere. It depends what garment it is.
Where is the label stocked?
Do you have plans to expand stockists beyond Australia?
Yes we have been stocked in Harvey Nichols in the UK previously as well as Neiman Marcus and Scoop in the US among other international boutiques and plan to reintroduce the label to these retailers again next year.
How did the label get started?
As a luxe fashion and lifestyle boutique in Notting Hill in 2002. Originally we were the first store in London to bring over Aussie designers under one roof including Sass and Bide, Willow, Zimmermann among others.
In 2007 we launched our own label of fashion, soft accessories, lingerie and cosmetics. My partner and I went our separate ways in 2009 and I have relaunched the online and fashion business as the sole Creative Director based out of Sydney.
How big is the design team?
Right now it is me and my Production Manager with design and pattern cutting experience. I art direct the prints using local graphic designers in Sydney.
How did you get started in design?
I have had no formal design training although I recently completed a fashion illustration course at Whitehouse Institute of Design so Icould put my ideas and designs onto paper.
It was running my own boutique in London for the last eight years that gave me the confidence to know what women want when it comes to clothes and i have always been drawn to a specific aesthetic when it comes to colour, prints and design.
How would you find staff?
If you create a brand that people know and love then often you attract great people who want to work for you. We would always employ people who approached us who were passionate about our brand and had done their research on Coco Ribbon.
We would advertise on our website and look at those who sent us their CV and a personal passionate covering email stating exactly the role they were seeking. For higher level positions such as a CFO we would use the best industry headhunters.
How do you find inspiration for your work?
Inspiration can be found everywhere but i find i’m most inspired when i’m relaxed and usually travelling. New York, Paris and Marrakech are three of my favourite places for finding inspiration.
I also find inspiration in nature – from butterflies and birds to colourful coral and creatures under the sea nothing is more spectacular than what mother nature creates.
What have you found most rewarding about having your own label?
Having a vision of a dress or garment and then seeing it to fruition is most rewarding. Then seeing others enjoy what you have created with them looking amazing in your designs is a fantastic feeling.
What do you wish you knew at the start of your label?
Where to begin? There is so much I’ve learned yet I feel like there is still an infinite amount to know. For every designer/creative director it would be different but for me I would say to trust your instincts always and dare to do things differently.
Don’t just do what others have done before you – think outside of the box.
The next step for your label is…..
Watch this space…