Isabel Manns is a British contemporary womenswear label that offers you reversible clothing that is sustainably made in London. Offering a range of daywear and evening wear, the brand is the epitome of day-to-evening dressing, with customers getting "two outfits for the price of one" as most garments are reversible
1. When and where did you first begin?
After moving back to London, from New York in 2018, I started designing custom dresses for private clients, as I knew that I wanted to set up my own label in the near future. A few months later I decided to take the plunge and start my label officially.
2. Where does your design inspiration come from?
Anything inspires me in my surroundings, and so a recent place I visit or painting I saw usually influences each collection I design. However, I would say my inspiration always draws back somehow to the English garden, particularly my family’s garden in Herefordshire.
3. Describe your brand in 3 words.
Reversible, versatile and timeless
4. What is the most difficult aspect of running your own label?
I enjoy working out the finances for each collection and pricing the clothing as I find it interesting but sometimes all you want to do as a “designer” is do the parts that you like the most which are usually designing the clothing and (for me) the prints. However, when it is your own business you have to deal with all aspects of the business, from design, fabric sourcing, the finances, and general day-to-day activities, which means the days, are very long!
5. Which part of the creative process do you enjoy most, and least?
I love designing the prints because, for me, that’s where the whole process starts. I also really like seeing the entire process of working out the construction of the clothing, trying to minimize the fabric waste and generally seeing my ideas come to life.
The least I enjoy doing is keeping up to date with the day-to-day finances and creating the initial budget!
6. Do you have a mentor?
Yes, I have a few mentors that are both in New York and London.
7. How long did your latest collection take to create?
The Autumn/Winter 2020 collection, which was just shown at London Fashion Week, was the quickest we have created before because we tried out new fabric mills and so we ended up only having around two months to create the whole collection in the end! I usually start designing the next collection as soon as the previous one has launched though.
8. What are your future plans?
I would love to sell my clothing in the United States because I still see New York as a home to me so it would be great to see my clothes on that side of the ocean!
9. Which pieces do you think everyone should have in their wardrobe?
A reversible classic styled dress or top from my Spring/Summer 2020 collection as they will last you a lifetime and go with anything in your wardrobe! I also think a well-fitted black and white cotton t-shirt and simple cashmere jumper are timeless and easy wearing pieces.
10. What attracted you to The Clothing Lounge
You stock such a great mix of independent brands and have something for everyone.