We’re a bunch of stationery geeks here at House of Coco so of course we fell in love the minute we spotted her brand. Here, she tells us more…
When did you launch the brand and what was the reason behind it?
I launched the brand earlier this year, because i thought “it’s now or never” and I knew I would always regret it if i didn’t. It was something I wanted to do since University, so I thought now was a better time than any.
Whats your background?
I have a degree in Textile and Surface design, and have been interning since then, in fashion, bridal and other fun things. I’ve always loved art and design and find doing something aesthetic is natural to me and where I thrive. I also worked in sales for a year, before i decided to set up my own brand, and the skills i learned there has helped a lot.
How many people are involved in the company and what are their roles?
Just me, and sometimes my cat. I am a one woman show, I do all my designing, marketing and advertising as well as the boring bits, but am hoping to expand eventually.
If you could start over with the business, would you do anything differently?
I think i am still at the stage where i am learning so much and making changes all the time, so for now I am riding out the trial and error process, but i’m sure there will be things i regret, but I like to think it is all part of the learning process and you sometimes have to make mistakes to get to where you want to be.
What is the hardest challenge you have faced since you started the company?
Definitely just being alone all the time. Generally I work well alone, but it can be hard if you have a bad day, then a bad week, and have no one else to bounce off of. But its down to good time management and problem solving.
2017 is here, where do you plan on taking the brand?
For now its all about developing my style, getting to know my clients and try and develop my brand to meet peoples needs. I do two different things here in the studio (print design and stationery design) so it can be hard juggling both, but Its also great working with clients and finding new ways to design to other peoples visions and bringing to life a wedding stationery set of someone else’s dreams, for example.
To date, what has been the highlight since launching?
It’s just great knowing that people like what you do. Since launching I’ve got a generous instagram following of 3K+ which is great because its the only support you get when you work alone, and its so amazing hearing about what my target audience like to see and what style they enjoy. A big part of what I do and what I love doing is about putting a smile on someones face just with something aesthetic, so I really enjoy the client base and creating designs people like to see.
Which city do you feel most at home in, London, Paris or New York?
I actually really love all three, but for me London will always be special, just having lived in or around it my whole life and knowing the people and the place so well and so fondly. It is a very special place, with lots of love and life.
Three beauty products you can’t leave the house without?
I’m pretty rubbish in the beauty department. Working alone means I can get way with not wearing any makeup, and i’m a pretty natural, low maintenance person anyway. Aussie hair oil is great though, as I have very frizzy unmanageable hair. But thats probably my limit in beauty products.
Best thing about London to you?
I love all the neighbourhoods and all the different communities. I lived in the Dulwich area for a year, and you fall in love so quickly with the area and the people and the community and once you are a part of a community in London I think you realise how special it is. I also love the architecture and how green it is. I think its such a beautiful city and there is something beautiful to see everywhere you look. As an aesthetic person, its very inspiring.
If you had to, what piece of clothing from your wardrobe would you wear everyday?
Thats easy, Leggings. I already wear them every day. Working from home and often such long hours I’m always wearing comfy clothes, its key to a successful working day!
Favourite love song?
I’m lousy with taking notice of lyrics, but Agnes Obel is a common inspiration in the studio. Definitely give her a listen if you want something lovely and calming and beautiful to listen to.
Best place for a coffee?
I’m a coffee in bed kinda girl. Coffee shops are great and all, but home comforts are great, and nothing beats a Sunday morning coffee in bed
Most memorable piece of advice given to you?
I once interviewed an ethical designer who I really admired when i was at University when writing my dissertation on ethical fashion and the cotton industry. She was really kind and open with the answers she gave me, then at the end she said she was happy to speak to me and that I should always do the same for others. The more people can help each other, the stronger we can all be, and isolating yourself and not helping others can only hold you back, and I admired that so much and this is a philosophy i try to live to both in my work life and personal life.
I’m not sure if its guilty or not, but Gilmore Girls is my weakness and if i’ve had a hard week i’ll always end it with my favourite girls. They always make me feel better!
If you could spent 24 hours in anywhere in the world, where would it be?
I love snow but rarely get to see it around London, so I think I would go somewhere snowy and magical.
In future, how do you plan on expanding the company?
I hope to have a strong print licensing company, but I would also very much like to establish my own brand style and start selling my own designs on my own products. This is something I have started doing a little with the help of websites such as Society 6, but in the future I hope to have my own shop with my own products, once I have established a style and client base that I am proud of.
Find out more…
And always get in touch for any questions at all: Hello@LaurenThomasDesigns.com