March 7, 2023
In celebration of International Women’s Day, Treehouse have partnered with Camilla Elphick to champion successful female entrepreneurs.
Meet Camilla Elphick -
Since graduating from Cordwainers, British shoe designer Camilla Elphick has established a reputation for her iconic, feminine styles that have become firm favourites with royalty, fashion editors, celebrities and brand ambassadors.
This week, we chatted to Camilla on how she came to build a successful fashion business, as well as delivering a series of style tips and forecasted looks for 2024 and beyond.
What is the most challenging part of growing your own business? How did you overcome them?
The most challenging part for me is change, but it is also a very exciting aspect of growing your own business. I have found recently it's all about embracing change to move forward – for me this has been growing the team, having new and different responsibilities, letting go and reminding myself to think of the bigger picture.
Tell us about your female-led team this International Women’s Day?
Our female team is a force — which I know and we've been told! The female team is led by Karen, Denise, Georgina, Min, Sadie, Kat and Tash. We work well together, but I think the defining feature is that we are all self-starters and have particular assets. I know it's International Women’s Day, but I also like that our team includes men and that we are all different ages.
How did shoe design come about?
I have had a passion for design and shoes since a young age. My late father once said that a person's shoes were one of the first things he noticed when they met - he had a collection of smart shoes! Whereas my mother always struggled to find shoes that fit her in size 42, so I used to spend most Saturday's shoe shopping or at art galleries.
How do you dress for your shoe choice? What tips can you share?
I dress with the occasion in mind – for example, I’ll wear our FREYA loafers to a meeting but depending on how formal the meeting is, I’ll mix up the outfit. My tips are to try and colour block outfits, as I think sometimes they stand out more. For me, it's about drawing the eye to the shoe; showing off your best features and adding something unexpected if possible.
What are the colours of 2023/2024?
According to the trend guide: WGSN, the colours for 2023/2024 are digital lavender and apricot crush, both of which we have in the collections. For our new collection this summer, we have also included bardot pink glossy leather and glitter.
Can you pair a flat / a midi / a heel to a style?
Yes. You can style all three pairs with denim. Now you will just need to find the perfect pair of jeans for you! At the moment, I’m loving the trend-led slightly longer and looser jeans in classic blues, like the pair I’m wearing from RAILS.
I would pair a flat, such as EVA with a t-shirt and blazer for every day. A midi, like LUCIA or our ZOE ankle boots with a cool shirt or sweater, and for the evening add a sparkly halter-neck top – love the range from female-founded brand HARMUR. For the heel, I’d go for TARA, our metallic platform for maximum impact and height!
What are the best tips for growing your own company?
Keep going – it is not easy! Make sure all the numbers add up. Realise that there are constant setbacks, so don’t be precious and move on quickly. Connect with people who are ahead of you. Make sure you have a supportive and positive network of people to uplift you.
To learn more about Camilla visit: https://camillaelphick.com/pages/about-us
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