It’s great discovering new designers, and on my recent trip to London I happened to cross paths with the very amazing Connie Nam, founder of jewellery label Astrid & Miyu. Connie and I have a connection in terms of our previous careers int he financial world and taking a leap of faith into fashion. In this designer Q&A, I find out all about how Connie started the label, her inspiration and her role models.
Where it began
Lorna: Tell me about your background, how did you come to be a designer? What inspired you to start your own label?
Connie: I started my career in investment banking, but I always had an inclination towards design and art as a child, and fashion during my teens. So I went on to work for LVMH, a luxury conglomerate. I had always wanted to start my own business, so I took a plunge 4 years ago by starting Astrid & Miyu. Personally, it was always difficult to find a cool and accessible jewellery brand, so I wanted to created a brand with jewellery pieces I knew people would appreciate.
Lorna: For your current SS16 collection, what are your stand-out pieces?
Connie: We have new ear cuffs and hand chains as part of our existing Fitzgerald Collection, inspired by The Great Gatsby. I think these would be great summer pieces – whether for festivals, beach holidays, or even weddings!
Lorna: Tell me about your thought process, from the idea to how it becomes a piece of your collection?
Connie: It really varies and depends on which collection! I try to listen to our customers quite a lot – what they ask for, what they already like. For instance, for SS15, our ear cuffs were super popular, so we decided to design some more ear cuffs. Or sometimes, I find old pieces from my mom’s jewellery drawer and they would inspire in creating the next collection.
Lorna: What has been your favourite career moment so far?
Inspiration and good times at Astrid & Miyu
Connie: My favourite moments are whenever I feel like my employees are better than me in any way! (So all the time)
Lorna: If you could dress anyone, who would it be (past or present)?
Connie: Kate Moss.
Lorna: Who are your role models?
Connie: I admire Tory Burch and Victoria Beckham as business women. They’re both created their fashion empires in a short span of time, and are constantly juggling work and family. I also admire star bloggers such as Song of Style or Chiara Ferragani, who are self made, and are extremely hard working.
Lorna: What will be the focus of your next collection?
Connie: ‘Minimal’ and ‘personal’ are our keywords for AW16.
To see the full collection check out www.astridandmiyu.com