Designer Spotlight : Stephanie Allen

Stephanie Allin is widely recognised as one of the best British bridal fashion designers and here at House of Coco we are huge fans.

Here, we go behind the brand to find out more about her plans for the future, what style means to her and more…

When did you launch the brand and what was the reason behind it?
I launched in 1992 having moved back to my home town of Mumbles with my young family from London and I wanted to create a company which could operate from outside central London. Bridal design fitted the bill most effectively.

Whats your background?
I studied Fashion at Ravensbourne School of Art and became interested in Theatre , Drama and the traditional dress making skills used in Costume design and then in London I developed my design skills in the competitive high street women’s fashion market.

How many people are involved in the company and what are their roles?
22 Staff at the moment split between our head office in Mumbles where production takes place and our flagship retail store in Chiltern Street Marylebone.

If you could start over with the business, would you do anything differently?
Not really – it has been fun, challenging and rewarding.

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What is the hardest challenge you have faced since you started the company?
 Opening the London Store was a huge challenge but it was also the best thing we’ve done.

Tell us one fact about you that people wouldn’t know?
I have Dual Nationality being British and Swiss which I get from having married my husband who had both. I am registered in “the Book” in a tiny village in St Gallen in Northern Switzerland – so different from the British way of doing things.

2015 is here, where do you plan on taking the brand?
We plan to develop the Wholesale side of the company into new overseas markets,  continue to support our current Stockists and host some exciting events in our own shops in Mumbles and London

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To date, what has been the highlight since launching?
One of the most exciting developments has been the impact of the Firehouse Hotel on the character of our store in Chiltern Street which changed from a quiet backwater destination shopping street to the coolest location in London.  Getting priority bookings at the Firehouse because we are close neighbours and celebrity watching is a lot of fun.

Which city do you feel most at home in, London, Paris or New York?
We love all 3. London is so buzzy and fascinating, our best overseas Stockist are located in Rue St Honore in Paris –  I love doing Designer events there and we enjoy the razzmatazz of NYC for the Bridal Market every year.

Three beauty products you can’t leave the house without?
Hand Cream, Lipstick, Hair Spray

Style means….?

Best thing about London to you?
“My Shop!”

Statement shoe or statement bag?

If you had to, what piece of clothing from your wardrobe would you wear everyday?
Black cropped jeans + Christian Dior shoes

Favourite love song?
Van Morrison – Have I told you lately that I love you

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Best place for a coffee?
On the beach at Mumbles

Most memorable piece of advice given to you?
Never accept 2nd best

Guilty pleasure?
Expensive candles

If you could spent 24 hours in anywhere in the world, where would it be?
San Francisco

In future, how do you plan on expanding the company?
We plan to develop the Wholesale side of the company into new overseas markets

Where can people find out more?

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