Our next interview in the High Street Fashion Week series is Kisslikedaisy, a feminine yet edgy brand created by Katy Louise Dyer. After leaving university with a 2:1 Bachelor of Science degree in June 2011, Katy went looking for her dream job. Realising that fashion was the career path she wanted to take she sent out over one hundred applications for paid and unpaid work. Unfortunately Katy was rejected by at least 90 per cent of the employers, generally because she did not have enough experience. Katy eventually struck gold and secured an internship with Luna and Curious, a ceramics and jewellery boutique in East London, and this is where the idea for her own business came about. “I saw how the boutique made money from selling their own work and others which made me think why don’t I do the same, I know how to use a sewing machine”, she adds.
Kisslikedaisy, an acronym of Katy’s initials, is an online fashion boutique selling handmade accessories for women such as hair accessories, bags, hats and jewellery. Katy is completely self-taught and has managed to create her own fashion job in just a year whilst juggling two jobs. “I thought of the idea in August 2011 and have worked on it every day for just over a year. I’ve had to learn and do everything myself, from making the products, securing the trademark to designing and managing the website. It’s been incredibly hard work; however I now have the fashion business I always dreamt of”, says Katy. All pieces are designed and handmade solely by Katy with her aim being to inspire young women to explore their style and creativity, but at affordable high streets prices. Her store currently boasts over 50 products.
Currently Katy is in the process of looking for another higher paid steady job as it is impossible to fund the business without another means of income. However, since adding kisslikedaisy to her CV Katy has found she has had more interest from employers than ever before, which really shows how hard work can pay off. Daisy was launched in December 2012 and is currently a lifestyle brand but Katy is ready to grow the business and conquer the fashion world!
What inspired you to start up the brand?
Working as an intern at Luna &Curious made fashion business seem more realistic so I took note of how the shop runs itself and then translated this into my own business ideas
How would you describe your accessories?
My accessories are a mixture of beautifully feminine designs to edgy, on trend contemporary day to day pieces
Who would you like to see wearing your brand?
Azealia banks, Emeli Sande, The Saturdays
Which designers inspire you?
Tour de Force, Little Shilpa, Bitching n Junkfood
If you could collaborate with any designer, who would you chose?
Tatty Devine, because I admire their quirky, pop art style.
What do you enjoy most about creating your own lines?
You’re completely in charge, no one can say that you’re no doing it right and even if they did it wouldn’t matter because you have control of what goes online and what doesn’t.
What would you say to someone thinking of setting up their own business?
I would say if you have the idea then go for it. Do not be afraid of your own ideas and common sense. Be confident and work at it every day, even if it’s for just 15 minutes. Also, do not think you need lots of money. I set up Daisy without any help from the bank.
How did you get involved with HSFW?
I was contacted via Twitter and thought it would be an amazing networking opportunity so I replied back within minutes.
How is preparation going?
Preparation is going well. I am making some exclusives so I look forward to showcasing them. I am being very strict and trying to make at least two things daily, if I do not already have it pre made.
What are you looking forward to most about attending?
Seeing other brands so I can follow their journeys and networking with wholesalers and the public in order to get some brand exposure.
I love the fact that all of the pieces are handmade by Katy rather than mass produced. Having got into the habit of wearing my hair in a bun I will definitely be adding the bun bows to my increasing list of must haves!