As the retail landscape continues to change and consumers are increasingly aware of their social and ethical buying power, one brand has created a solution to an increasing issue within the industry in an experiential, honest way. We met founder of Lone Design Club, Rebecca Morter to find out more about LDC’s process and the brand’s latest space on 65 Great Portland Street, which is open until 15th October and co-insides with the Frieze London art fair.
How did Lone Design Club start?
I worked with designers such as Paul Costello and Simone Rocha then launched my own brand for a while after graduating from London College Of Fashion which found me working with celebrities such as Lady Gaga, Jessie J & Charlie XCX and showcasing during London Fashion Week. I became increasingly aware of the costs and risks involved in being a designer. I’d pursued wholesale but the orders were thin and it was hard to build a viable business within a crowded market. After a while people were asking where they could see my pieces in stores and not just on the internet, so I grouped together with a PR and some other designers to host a Pop Up Shop. The pop up not only increased orders but allowed real interaction and feedback from customers that you can’t get online. The customer is king as they decide what they want and ultimately what they’re going to buy.
Lone Design Club now hosts 10 pop ups a year in London as well as Milan with a focus on sustainable brands and start-ups. What drew you to have such a solid sustainable focus?
We believe at Lone Design Club that sustainability should be a given within new businesses and start-ups. For us it’s about having the awareness of your process, actions and outputs. No one can be 100% perfect, but constantly minimising your output and making socially responsible decisions and educating your customers is key. We showcase designers that use a range of materials and techniques and for their pieces, always seeking the most sustainable way forward as their brands develop. Showcasing cool and contemporary fashion, with a conscience.
You’re a rotating pop up space, with each location hosting a different topic, theme or event type. Tell us more about LDC’s retailing concept?
When I was starting out there was a lot of change in the retail and fashion sectors as well as a change in customer wants and needs. LDC provided customers a sense of space, not just transactional but educational and experiential through our events programme and opportunity to meet the people behind the brands
Tell us about LDC’s latest pop up ‘Your Body, Your Canvas’?
Each LDC pop up co-insides with a theme or surrounding event such as London Fashion week or Chelsea Flower Show, providing a focused demographic and a peak in footfall. With Frieze Art Fair, we’ve curated a selection of brands inspired by and creating art in fashion forms. The LDC in-store experiences feature nail artists and tattooists to explore and celebrate self-expression using the body as a canvas. We’d like people to consider buying clothes the way they buy art. To appreciate, enjoy and then pass on, all tying into our concept of pop up with a purpose.
What’s up next for Lone Design Club?
Our team continues to grow, we’ve gone from 3 to 10 now, so recruitment is a key focus to ensure not only our brand growth but our dynamic team values are carried across our projects. We’re in Shanghai for a Pop Up later in October, then back to London in December for our Anti Black Friday Event. Next year will see more growth in the UK as well as top tier and second tier cities across the world all encouraging customers to celebrate slow fashion, buy less and choose better.