Q AND A
What is THE-ACEY and why is it important to you?
THE-ACEY is the online destination for ‘Style with Purpose’, offering women the option to buy better without compromising on ethics or aesthetics. I founded THE-ACEY based on a need to elevate and celebrate clothing brands doing business better—whether it’s reducing their social or environmental impact. I want to break the stereotype of what ‘sustainable style’ means and make it the norm that clothing be produced in a more conscious way.
How do your personal values shape your business?
I’ve always worn things out, even when I was shopping ‘fast-fashion’. My mum used to say, ‘You’re good at wearing your clothes’, as I’d put a garment straight on and wear it for years after. So I guess the notion of timeless over trends and less but better has always been instilled in me. This is very much reflected in THE-ACEY. I’m also genuinely fascinated by people’s stories, so I can relate this to THE-ACEY as we endeavour to learn the purpose behind each brand.
How would you describe your relationship with fashion/clothing?
I have always wanted to work within fashion. When I was young I used to tell my mum that I would work at Vogue and go up the escalator in a pencil skirt every day. Now I’ve come to realise the reality of the industry and it doesn’t involve a pencil skirt (that often). I chose a somewhat alternative route into the industry and didn’t go to university. Instead, I chose to intern then later work for the likes of TOMS and Temperley, always in different departments. It wasn’t a deliberate or tactical journey, but it gave me a broad overview of the industry as a whole. I gained experience across retail, wholesale, marketing and PR.
“In my optimistic mind I see the future of fashion being a place where there’s no such thing as ‘ethical fashion’, simply fashion.”
The Slow Fashion movement means…
Thinking about the purpose of a product. When, where and how many times will I wear this? Is it made to last?
What excites you most about the fashion industry in London?
I was actually living in Amsterdam when I had the idea to set up THE-ACEY. I absolutely loved living there; it’s a city full of independent stores and brands. I just felt, however, that I had to be in London to establish THE-ACEY. London has such a great hub of young creatives all aiming to do business better, as well as also having some of the world’s biggest and most influential brands. I feel like London has an international spotlight on it, especially in terms of the fashion industry.
How have your attitudes toward fashion changed as you've aged?
My attitude towards fashion has ‘slowed down’ immensely and my standards have gone up. I now care about the quality and origin of the clothing I wear. I used to consume clothing at the rate of knots—my buying criteria used to be cheap, accessible and on trend! Now I add garments that will complement my existing wardrobe and see me through many occasions.
What is your personal uniform?
I cycle to work so have found myself dressing around my bike, which means considering functionality. In terms of style I tend to dress in a rather monochrome manner, which you can probably sense by looking at THE-ACEY. I would say it is a good representation of my personal style. Day-to-day you’ll find me wearing Veja sneakers, Svilu organic cotton culottes, a bamboo polo neck or Diarte jumper.
"I founded THE-ACEY based on a need to elevate and celebrate clothing brands doing business better—whether it’s reducing their social or environmental impact."
Is there a garment that has had a special place in your life or is linked to a treasured moment?
There is actually a pair of glitter TOMS shoes… My first ever pair that I got while I was interning for them in Los Angeles at age 18. They remind me of such good carefree times, as well as how much I learned about start-up business. My mum, sister and I also share a lot of clothing; I like wearing something that has a story behind it already.
Who / what do you look to for style cues and why?
I am obsessed with the style of real women I meet. In fact, some of them we have profiled on our journal—Chi and Natali from The Pressery, and Rosa from Cereal Magazine being some of them. I find it inspiring to meet people who are seemingly comfortable in their own skin and clothes! I also look to people like Garance Doré who have an authentic, classic style.
Who has impacted your life the most and how so?
It sounds cliché, but I’d say my family have influenced me most. My mum has the ability to make everyone around her feel comfortable and happy. My dad has such determination to teach his kids how to do things, while also letting us learn from our own mistakes! My old boss from TOMS also put so much trust in me. I didn’t realise at the time, but he let me run and build the organisation from the ground up while I was still learning and developing as a 20 year old!
When you look to the future of fashion retail, what do you see?
In my optimistic mind I see the future of fashion being a place where there’s no such thing as ‘ethical fashion’, simply fashion.
Thanks to THE-ACEY