Attire Accessories -Jul/Aug 2018 (Issue 71)

130 ATTIRE Contact Katie Loxton +44 (0)1295 263 430 year as we continue our West Coast roll out. What are your current best-selling designs? For Joma Jewellery, it has always been our “a little” carded bracelets.These were one of our original product lines, and we have a sentiment for every occasion: birthdays, travel, holidays mantras and weddings.They make the ultimate gift at a great price point, perfectly finished with a sweet saying. At Katie Loxton, it’s definitely our perfect pouch. Again, one of our hero original pieces, these perfectly sized pouches are finished with a sweet sentiment stamped in gold.They make the perfect clutch bag, make-up bag or organiser and are one of our most versatile designs. Selling at £16.99, they are a strong price point, which enables so many of our customers to buy them in multiple colours. When was the website launched, and how does it support the business? Our retail websites were launched last year. Unusually, we built the business with a main focus on wholesale first alongside building our in-store presence and brand awareness before a retail site was launched. For us, this was vital to developing a nationwide awareness. Because of this, our retail launch has been incredibly successful. We have found there is a different and new customer base that loves to shop with us direct, and it’s been great to open this side of our customer base more. We like to really give people the full experience via our online store. What have been the key milestones in the business? One of the initial milestones was taking on our team of sales agents about seven years ago. Up until this point, I was driving the length of the country selling our jewellery. Taking on the new team has enabled me to focus on product design and development and really build the creative side of the company. Some of the big moves to large suppliers also helped us to establish the fantastic quality across our products. Launching our Katie Loxton brand was a huge milestone and one we are still incredibly proud of. We really wanted to build a lifestyle brand with the same ethos as Joma Jewellery, and moving into a whole new product range was a huge moment for us. We are very lucky that is has been such a success. Launching our first standalone concept store in 2016 was an incredibly proud moment too. Being able to create a wonderful haven in which to discover our products was incredibly exciting. To be able to showcase all our products how we imagine them and to give the customers a wonderful shopping experience is still something I’m incredible proud of. We are also very excited to be opening our second store in Chichester later this year! How do you view the current market, and what trends – both in business and product – do you see emerging over the coming months? The current market is changing a lot, and we are having to move with it very quickly. I feel that customers are looking for something extra special these days and want something that has it all. We are lucky to have positioned ourselves in a very distinctive place in the market between the high street and high-end brands. This allows us to offer something that is accessible and inspiring. For us, sentiment is at the heart of all our products and continues to be the hero of our designs. Do you have any thoughts on how Brexit will affect your business? We have certainly felt the initial impact with the decreased value of the pound, which has squeezed margins and put limitations on what we can design within certain price brackets. If we do leave the Customs Union with a bad deal or no free- trade agreement, then the extra paperwork and duties to export into Europe will hinder the business we do there. Hopefully this will not happen and there will be no significant changes allowing us to concentrate on growing in the European markets. What are your future plans for the business? We are really excited to continue our US expansion, particularly across the West Coast with a full roll out this year. We are continuing to grow our key accounts in the UK to offer an expansion of products and to build more in-store branding. We are looking at opening more standalone franchise stores across the UK and hopefully the US and are excited to open our London flagship store soon! We are continuing to grow across Europe and Australia and are excited to build in these markets. For the Katie Loxton brand, we are aiming to push all of our product offerings into new categories and are excited to develop our wedding, home and fashion categories with lots of exciting new collections in store for the future. Is there anything else you’d like to add? We would just like to say a huge thank you to everyone who loves our brands. We work incredibly hard to create distinctive beautiful products, and it still amazes me every day how lucky we are to have such a wonderful following. We are so excited to showcase our autumn/winter collection later this year and make sure that we have the perfect gift for everyone! A