Meet Emma Shaw – Fashion Design Consultant & Founder of ‘The Well Worn’
Q Tell us about your career?
Emma: My first job after graduating was working in knitwear – in a factory based in Manchester. This was great for me, really hands-on and gave me an understanding of the whole process and not just the design side. I still love the bustle of factories now and the whole making process. It was at my next job that I really broadened my scope by working with different brands and retailers. That’s the interesting thing about the supplier side – you need to be very adaptable at changing your handwriting to design for different customers.
My next move was in retail and I was ladieswear design manger at George at Asda for 6-years. This again was fast paced environment, reacting to sales, chasing in newness and working on large volumes. The split of the department meant we were always working on 6 different capsules dropping at different times and with products on different lead times you were constantly juggling deadlines.
By the time I left Fat Face I was Design Director across all departments, which was an amazing role and gave me experience of working within the board as well as with the design function. This really broadened my knowledge of the strategic and commercial side of the business. During that time I also created some new initiatives, which meant working with GFW, Folk, Liberty and Camp Bestival.
My role now as a consultant means I get to work with different retailers, brands and start-ups and I’m really enjoying getting out and about and meeting new people. I’ve also had time to reflect on main loves in life – vintage, dresses and UK factory’s and this has promoted me to found a new brand ‘The Well Worn’.
Q What drew you to working in fashion?
Emma: Through fashion I think you can really express your personality and it’s a great way of having fun. My interest started with creating fabrics, prints and just making things – floral trousers were one of my first creations!! Looking for new inspiration and predicting what trends might come into clothing is something else that I love.
Q Where do you find your inspiration?
Emma: Honestly it can come from anywhere, art, interiors, travel – but its probably vintage pieces that give me the biggest thrill.
Q A day in the life of Emma…
Emma: This is really varied which I love. Most days start with either a jog or dog walk, checking my emails and getting the kids off to school. Then I can be out researching and sourcing at vintage markets, designing and up-cycling in the studio or visiting clients or factories. I try to make sure I finish at a reasonable time and unwind with a glass of vino!
Q What’s the best career advice you’ve ever received?
Emma: Work hard, keep it simple, have confidence in yourself, and make mistakes.
Q Who would be your dream client to design a piece for?
Emma: With my current crush on ‘Ordinary People’ it would have to be Daisy Edgar-Jones.
Q What would we normally find you doing at the weekend?
Emma: As we’re heading into the summer: I love a music festival so try and go to at least a couple over the summer, hanging outdoors (pref on the beach!) with my kids and dog, and drinking bubbles with friends.
More from Emma’s launch brand ‘The Well Worn’ next time.
Tap the link to find out more about the services Emma provides:https://esdesignstudio.co.uk/