We are excited to introduce our new brand Lily & Me! A family owned print led lifestyle brand offering beautiful and feminine clothing and accessories. In light of this exciting news Outdoor and Country caught up with Gaby, one of Lily & Me’s print designers to find out all you need to know about the latest addition to our Outdoor and Country family.
Q. How did the Lily & Me story begin?
Our business was launched in early 2007 by Amelia and her partner Hari who both came manufacturing backgrounds and had spent a number of years producing clothing for other brands. As a print lover, Amelia knew from the outset that this would be the brands USP!
Initially trading as Amari Designs, our concept was to provide beautiful prints, easy care fabrics and flattering shapes for women aged 30 – 50. In the early days, Design and Marketing was managed by Amelia with help from sister, Polly. Their parents John and Jane managed distribution – literally trading out of their garage in Cornwall! As the brand grew we purchased a warehouse in Launceston, Cornwall and employed more staff.
In 2012 we opened our design office in Gloucestershire and introduced a sister label, taking the name Lily & Me. Lily is Amelia and Hari’s daughter so it was a meaningful name to us all. New branding through swing tags, labels and point of sale cemented our product philosophy and the Lily & Me identity as we know it today!
Last year we underwent rapid growth, relocating both the warehouse and offices to Gloucestershire and employing a team of 18 full time staff in addition to several part time employees. We are proud to say that we own our own factory in Nepal where 90% of our products are manufactured. With full control over working conditions and employment practices this factory employs approximately 350 staff.
Q: What does a typical day look like for you?
Every day comes with its differences which I love! Morning always starts with a cup of coffee and email checking. Working with our factory in Nepal, the difference in time zone makes checking emails a priority each morning. On a typical day the design team gets together to discuss our latest inspirations – getting lost in the library of Pinterest or rummaging through our archives of vintage buys! We have a group critique of the latest designs for the collection and discuss potential new directions. Analysis and keeping on top of customer feedback is so invaluable to us!
Q: Where do you draw inspiration from?
Our tagline ‘British by Design, Beautiful by Nature’ drives our inspiration each season. Our unique prints and styles are designed in house and are inspired by the beauty of the surrounding countryside. All of our fabrics are bespoke and we are meticulous in our design process. We put love into everything we do!
Q: What makes the brand special?
Our beautiful bespoke prints and individuality in product that you just won’t find elsewhere! Being a family business we have a shared goal and common values and family values are at the heart of all we do! We have championed independents for many years and love to support the high street!
We love our Lily style and are extremely proud of our collections.
Q: What can we expect to see from Lily & Me next?
Split into two vibrant colour stories we have designed our product to take customers right through the season. January brings a much needed lift with some bright new inspiration! Beautiful coloured stripe tees that will see you throughout the year. Pretty yet commercial prints to make any day a little bit brighter!
February introduces new prints and solid colours, including our ever popular linen blend range. In March we will be offering even more fantastic summer prints that you can be sure not to find elsewhere! Our modern and feminine border print range is a real show stopper! With accessories and handbags which will bring together you look perfect year after year!
Our next plans for expansion are with our girlswear, due to debut in shops later this year. The mini label will be known as ‘Lily & Grace’ – again a family connection as Grace is Lily’s cousin and the two girls will be proud brand ambassadors! The collection will run alongside our womenswear, combining unique prints with our signature styles.