Hey guys, so last week I decided to open my Instagram up to questions. Due to the positive response, I decided to then dedicate a blog post to answering all your questions! So here goes!
1. How old are you and where are you from?
I am 23. God, I am getting so old! I am from Sheffield, South Yorkshire. My broad accent gives me away fast!
2. Have you always wanted to make equestrian wear?
To be completely honest no. I haven’t. I have always been extremely business minded and interested in style and of course horse riding. Since leaving school my goal has been towards taking over my family’s business (which I work for as well as running LDE).
But the entire reason my brand came together was through my own consumer experience. I have never been a big fan of equestrian clothing, I always found it too boring and expensive. So, to cut a long story short, I took it upon myself to reinvent equestrian style to something more modern but sophisticated.
I also wanted the customer experience of shopping at a designer brand, with the same look and feel but without the hefty cost.
3. How did you get into riding?
Through persistent nagging to my parents! My family isn’t horsey, in fact not even slightly rural or outdoorsy, so it was a slight struggle. My mum told me that from being a toddler, I was obsessed by horses. Whilst most little girls had babies in prams, I had stuffed horses. I would also watch the horse racing on tv with my cup of tea, dunking my bourbons and wearing nothing else than my wellies. Sorry TMI! I didn’t start riding until I was 8.
4. What is your favourite product?
Of course, I love all my products, I don’t produce anything that I don’t love. However, my favourite product is our Technical Leggings. They are so damn comfy. I live in them and wear them everywhere. My friends do too, so when we go anywhere it looks like a corporate team day out!
Do you have your own horses?
I have two beautiful horses. Pig, Ex Racer 15.3hh Bay TB Mare who I have owned for 6 years and have evented. Luna, 16.1hh Bay Warmblood Mare who I have only owned for a few months. Pig is now retired due to injury and Luna I hope to have some fun on and hopefully event! If I ever get time…
5. Your favourite clothing brand before?
Like I said, I never chose to wear equestrian clothing before I started LDE. I hated breeches and would never wear them. If I did like any brands, I couldn’t afford to buy the clothing! Or more like, I couldn’t justify spending that kind of money.
6. What is your biggest inspiration?
My biggest inspiration is my Dad and how he started his own business himself and built it up to the success it is today. N’aw.
7. Will you be making competition wear?
8. What is the best part of owning your own business?
I love when I see people wearing my designs for me it is my big payoff. Whenever I am approached by a previous customer at a trade event, I love to see them light up when talking about my clothes. ‘Your leggings are the comfiest things I own, my husband complains that he is sick of seeing me wear them’ ‘I put your jacket on last week at the yard with my jeans and headed to dinner with my friends, I got so many compliments!’. I also love working for myself, I get to be creative and live the lifestyle that I want. I wake up everyday with a sense of purpose and excitement. I am living my dream.
9. Any advice for somebody that wanted to follow in your footsteps?
Before you think about starting up a business, be sure you know what you are getting yourself in to. It is not for the faint hearted. Your time and money are no longer your own for a very long time. Any project will take you double the amount of time and money that you anticipate, unfortunately to need to ensure you have both to dedicate to your business. Also, I strongly suggest that you try to get some experience working within another business before starting your own. Look into business courses too, there is a lot to learn and it never ends.
10. Where do you get inspiration from for your designs?
I listen a lot to riders or just about anybody who participates in a sport or works out. I like to understand what they need, what they ideally would love their sportswear to do. I constantly look at how can I make the riding experience better for my customer through my clothing. Design wise I get a lot of inspiration from the catwalk and music. I love to put my headphones in, shut off everything and grab a pencil. I aim to make my designs sporty but extremely classy. I hate fast fashion, I believe in timeless style.