Our mission is to prepare you for spontaneity with more styling and fewer pieces so you can have fun, travel light, and always feel prepared for life’s wonderful possibilities. We provide trend-resistant, easy-care, made-to-order clothing designed to collect and love forever!
Tell us about yourself?
At the age of 14, I met my first fashion designer and knew I wanted to be just like her. She was well known back in the 80s for her rip-stop nylon flight suits, and I loved wearing them to school. Soon, my friends all wanted one, so I began my first adventure as an entrepreneur – I would buy designer clothing wholesale and sell them to my friends at school. My markup was less than retail because I had no overhead. It was a win-win, and I was quickly learning how to run a small fashion business. When I made enough money to pay for a school ski trip, I was hooked.
Once I was old enough, I worked in my designer’s boutique on Younge Street after school and on weekends. When I graduated from high school, I registered (with my designer) for Jobs Ontario (a program designed to mentor and train young people in various careers). I worked as her assistant at her factory on King Street during the day and took fashion design courses at night school at Seneca and Toronto Metropolitan University (Ryerson.) By the age of 21, I had saved enough money to travel the world for eight months. This was when I discovered that the world needed travel refined fashion.
When I started my travels, my backpack was back-breaking and my partner, fed up with helping carry it, found me a shopping cart to put my huge backpack in – the two-wheeler kind that little old ladies use when going to the grocery store. It had squeaky wheels, and everyone knew when I was walking down the train station platform…lol.
I soon befriended two lovely ladies from Sweden who travelled with just a beach bag and looked fabulous everywhere they went. I studied their style – which was very European with a less-is-more aesthetic. Unlike me, a fashionista who needed to feel prepared with so much clothing. Their secret was multi-way clothing that was both functional and stylish, easy-care, and wrinkle-free. They could easily hand wash in the evening, and their clothes were dry by morning. This was during the flash dance era when you could just cut out a hole in your sweatshirt and turn it into a high-fashion frock. I loved the whole concept!
When I came back to Canada, I decided to start my own collection, but I needed more experience. I also knew the fashion business is one of the most difficult industries in the world to survive in, I would need to have connections and experience. I worked at a company that imported fashion and had the chance to travel to several countries to overlook production, then for a well-known fashion brand as their head designer. Once ready, I began my own collection with Bob, my production manager, who had been working with me since I first started in the business. We started out with a wholesale brand, selling to retailers across Canada. Once the offshore market opened up, we couldn’t compete with prices, so I opened a retail store on Avenue Road and specialized in destination weddings. Using my expertise in multi-way styles, I began making bridesmaids’ dresses and effortlessly elegant beach wedding gowns. I was the go-to shop for destination weddings in the late 90s and early 2000s. Customers began asking for more of the multi-way pieces, so I designed a collection called, Six Easy Pieces for Travel. From this collection, I won best Mompreneur on slice T.V. I began to promote this collection at retail shows across Canada and in the U.S. until the pandemic. I then pivoted to e-commerce, doing virtual trunk shows. I will continue growing the business through my website and community of women who love effortless elegance and travelling light.
If you could go back in time a year or two, what piece of advice would you give yourself?
Don’t fear a pandemic. It was the best thing that happened to my business and forced me to focus 100 per cent on e-commerce and its potential.
What problem does your business solve?
We are a slow fashion brand and only make-to-order, so we minimize waste. We make packing light easy for women who love to travel, and we make clothes to collect over time rather than throw away, which means less waste.
What is the inspiration behind your business?
Learning that it is much more fun to travel light and always feel prepared. My customers are avid travellers and women who prefer a less is more aesthetic when it comes to fashion.
What is your magic sauce?
My customers are my inspiration, and their feedback is essential to my brand. Through social media, they love to help choose colours, fabrics, and designs. Customers send me suggestions on where they travel and what they would love to see as part of the collection. This helps eliminate risk when introducing new products.
What is the plan for the next 5 years? What do you want to achieve?
My vision is to grow the business in sales yet still have fun. After surviving a few recessions, I know that “less overhead” is always “more profitable”, so I will continue staying small and enjoying what I do best, which is designing functional fashion for ladies who love spontaneity.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?
My biggest challenge is to control myself and not fall into the trap of opening another retail location or investing in too much inventory which then requires more overhead. Instead, I specialize in small batch production with low inventory and less waste.
Everything we make is pre-ordered and shipped once ready.
I have learned from experience, having built both a wholesale and retail fashion businesses that if you have good designs, you will always do well …until a recession. To overcome my biggest challenge, which is the economy, I have recession proofed my business by reducing stress and excess so I can run my business like my brand message “Have Fun, Travel Light”
How can people get involved?