An interview with Amanda Wakeley

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1. How did you start out in the Fashion Industry? Tell us what inspired you to become a designer?
I started modelling in New York first but then I set up my small atelier in South-West London. My inspiration to become a designer came from my mother who was very glamourous and I remember being fascinated by her wardrobe.. then I started to intuitively create and craft… it’s a family joke that no-one knows where this came from as there was no-one else artistic in the family.

2. The Wakeley Collections are often inspired by customs, cultures and experiences from around the world, using masculine and feminine qualities that create a rich, contemporary look – what has been your favourite collection?
It’s hard to pick a favourite… each collection has it’s own story whilst evolving and reacting to what came before. As a designer you are constantly striving to make the next collection even better which is what drives us all in the design team.

3. What have been the most inspiring moments for you in business – the memories that stand out amongst all the milestones and challenges?
Creating my own business “Amanda Wakeley” and to be positioned as a luxury lifestyle brand comprising not only bridal and eveningwear but also tailoring, luxury sportswear, sumptuous cashmeres and an expanding line of lifestyle offerings such as accessories, jewellery, sunglasses and candles. I feel very fortunate to have a loyal following of women who trust and rely on me to help them look and feel their best.
One of the challenges at the moment is that there is so much noise in the world and so many mediums to reach people… people have information overload so it is working out how to reach your customer in a way that is still relevant to the brand and yet being heard.

4. You talk often about empowering women through fashion – tell us what key pieces do you have in your wardrobe that empower you?
I’m a woman designing for women and I hope that my clothes make them feel empowered, confident and beautiful, whatever the item! I aspire to give all my customers that amazing feeling that you are the best version of yourself… whether on the school run in a luxurious cashmere jogger and matching bomber, at a business meeting in a sculpted tailoring suit or at a fabulous red-carpet event in a satin bias cut gown.

5. You’ve co-chaired the committee for “Fashion Targets Breast Cancer” for over 20 years – how did you become involved in the committee?
I was approached by Caryn Franklin in 1996 to co-chair Fashion Targets Breast Cancer. The fundraising efforts of FTBC has helped to build and maintain Britain’s first dedicated breast cancer research centre.

6. What advice would you give someone starting their own fashion line – what would be the most important piece of business knowledge you would impart?
My advice for up and coming designers is to understand the industry, know your craft and get as much experience as possible.

7. As an entrepreneur, co-chair for “Fashion Targets Breast Cancer” and avid dog-walker, how do you find balance?
I love living and working in London as it has a wonderful cosmopolitan energy and creativity but I love escaping to the country at the weekend with my Labrador Lola. When I’m not in the studio I love to travel… it opens the mind and allows you to put things into perspective… it’s always inspiring.

To find out more about Amanda Wakely Follow the link below.Screen Shot 2018-11-07 at 11.33.46

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