Natasha talks to Sarah Curran, founder and chief executive of the award winning website my-wardrobe.com.
Sarah, who is founder and chief executive of fashion retail website my-wardrobe.com admits that it’s taken a lot of "blood, sweat and tears". She won't tolerate "bitchiness" at her company and says a "lovely" working environment helps. "Diva attitudes aren't healthy!" By Natasha Claydon
What did you do this morning?
I was up at 6am to get my son Jake ready for school. He is seven. I’m not a morning person so I had a coffee before I got myself ready for work. I’m a skinny latte person. Have been for years! I’m known for my coffee runs with the team. I always check the day’s sales from the day before on my iPhone and then I used my hour long train journey down to London to catch up on emails and the day’s news on Twitter and other online sites.
Who inspires you?
I’m inspired every day by so many people around me. I’m very privileged to have such an incredibly creative, passionate team, many of which are the original members of the founding team from six years ago. But the drive to start my own business came from my father. He owned his own business and I grew up having a father who had his own business. I saw just how hard he worked. It instilled in me that if I was going to contribute to my family’s quality of life then it meant that I would have to do things for myself.
(I’m thrilled! Am just like Sarah – although on reflection, not quite as successful. Like Sarah, my incredible father has inspired my entrepreneurial spirit and I am forever grateful to him.)
How do you decide what to feature on my-wardrobe.com?
- It’s very much about the customer. From the buys to when we merchandise pieces on the site. Women and men need a 24 hour wardrobe now because their lifestyles are so busy. And so we put our customer at the heart of everything we do. We really have to think about how that item will fit into their wardrobe. We create a unique edit of each designer collection whether it’s ready-to-wear, shoes, bags, jewellery or accessories, which will perfectly fit into the wardrobe of our customer.
How would you describe your earlier career?
- It wasn’t until I was 30 when I knew what I wanted to do career-wise. It was only then that I knew I wanted to launch my own business and be able to contribute to my family. I had worked at L’Oreal and as a Sub-Editor at News International, which gave me an understanding of retail and internet publishing and I believed in my own instinct when it came to fashion.
What has been your defining moment?
I will always remember the moment that my-wardrobe was awarded Best Customer Experience at the WGSN Global Fashion Awards in New York. We were short-listed against some of the leading international retailers and to win was such a huge achievement for us as a 5 year old business.
What makes this all worthwhile for you?
I’m very privileged to love what I do and every day is different. To see how far the business has come is so rewarding for myself and the team and since starting our global expansion twelve months ago, I often have to pinch myself when I walk into our Australian, Scandinavian or Middle East offices. We now have a team of 106, an office in London and a warehouse in Nottingham.
What's a favourite item of clothing in your wardrobe?
It would have to be my Smythson travel wallet. I travel a lot for work and my beautiful orange travel wallet doubles up as chic clutch as well as a wallet to fit all of my travel documents. ’Im keeping it!’ Sarah assures me when I ask her if she will ever retire it.
(Note to self: will attempt to get my hands on my very own Sarah Curran style orange Smythson wallet!)
Do you have a hidden talent?
I cook a fabulous lobster pasta!
To get some of Sarah’s everyday luxury visit my-wardrobe.com
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Sarah in France with her son Jake
What are your top 3 secrets to clothes shopping online?
Sign up to newsletters and Twitter or Facebook groups – you’ll be the first to hear about your favourite designers arriving, receive sale previews, news and previews on exclusive collections.
Use sites where you can have a personal relationship with their style advisors – who can give you personal recommendations on what will fit you best.
Look for loyalty and VIP programmes - you can often earn gift vouchers as you shop, which you can spend on future purchases.