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Summer Edition 2019

  • Text
  • Vinander
  • Village
  • Bloggers
  • Blog
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  • Schools
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  • Fashion
  • Woodall
  • Rixo
  • Clare
  • Webb
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  • Midi
  • Income
  • Barneby
  • Luxury
  • Jewellery
  • Vintage

World-wide WEBB

World-wide WEBB Designer, Hello! columnist, podcaster and novelist Tabitha Webb describes herself as a serial entrepreneur. Her eponymous luxury label is known for a playful use of colour and a celebrity following. Amanda Morison takes a walk on the bright side A certain California boho-style influences Tabitha Webb’s colourful prints. The designer lived in the US until she was 10 and during school holidays from boarding school. She has a beach-blonde look and loves the tie-dye and silks vibe from the Sixties, which marries so well with eclectic British style: “I love that Brits take risks and are trend setters. I just wish we dressed up a little more – we all wear jeans far too much. I’m the most excited person ever about Black and White Tie, but my own signature look is jeans with a silk shirt and trainers”. Saying that, there are few places a smart blouse and jeans won’t take you today, especially if you follow Webb’s maxim to go everywhere with a pair of heels not to mention her advice to be less minimalist when it comes to a holiday wardrobe. “I’m a very ‘what if?’ packer and it would be very rare for a surprise holiday outing that I couldn’t equip myself for”. The Telegraph calls Tabitha Webb a superglue brand that fixes ‘broken outfits’. Her legion of celebrity followers – think Fearne Cotton, Holly Willoughby and the Duchess of Cambridge – has been an important part of the brand’s growth. Webb admits a celebrity network helps to drive traffic, awareness and sales: “In such a saturated market this is so important.” You can wear a beautifully cut, vibrant Tabitha Webb blouse or impact-making supersoft cashmere sweater and immediately get noticed, whether you’re on the school run, at work, or at a party. Webb is particularly proud of having put the pussybow firmly into contemporary fashion. “It is our signature shape and I hope is seen as synonymous with the brand”. Along the way Webb has made endless friendships. Personalitywise she’s effervescent and the opposite of a fashionista with a frown. Collaborations often form from these friendships; for example she’s created a limited edition collection out this summer with wallpaper and fabric design house Barneby Gates (cofounder Vanessa Wallpaper collaboration with Barneby Gates, Celebrity fan Holly Willoughby Barneby also features in this issue of Noticed). Webb is quite happy to get by with a little help from her friends: “What

PROFILE Best friend Jenny Falconer and Fran Bacon we do is really tough. It’s unlucrative and unrewarding in so many ways, but the fun is having a creative vision and seeing it come to life”. There was no eureka moment that saw Webb launch her business. She describes herself as a serial entrepreneur with a million ideas a day. “I started in advertising and couldn’t find the big slouchy handbag of my dreams. I designed one in a striking metallic and it went very big very quickly, with stylists and celebrities. My career has rocketed from place to place ever since.” Design-wise, Webb loved Jonathan Saunders and treasures a ‘really beautiful woven dress done in “I will always work in print and colour and try and get everyone out of khaki and navy” incredible peacock green and purple’. But even Saunders’ talent couldn’t keep his label going. “Fashion is a really tough business in today’s changing times – look at Saunders and at recent casualty L.K.Bennett.” Webb employs a different business model to keep overheads low and is working with various collaborators from Uniqlo, Avon and QVC. “It’s survival. Everything has a shelf life and you’ve got to keep moving”. I ask Webb about the future and get an excited “Oooh!” in return. Her novel No Regrets will be published by Harper Collins in 2020, and she’s behind a podcast called Tabitha Talks during which she speaks to influencers. She’s also doing a series of special Podcasts just for designer outlet Bicester Village. A homewares range launches with QVC in the UK and the States, with a table top line in the Far East. At the same time as going global, Webb has a personal mission to bring a little colour to life closer to home. “I will always work in print and colour and try and get everyone out of khaki and navy – we all end up looking so uniform in our parkas. Colour lifts your mood. It’s so British to be in dark colours as we wander through the miserable weather. I say we should sprinkle some colour and sparkle among the misery!”. SUMMER 19 ★ schoolnotices.co.uk 31

Magazines

Inside Scoop 2019
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