My favourite model … my daughter Joëlle! Just like the women’s enterprises I help in South Africa to keep their craft going, she’s carrying on the Smart women’s tradition by being the fourth generation to go into fashion.
My grandmother was an accomplished embroiderer and her work is featured in embroidery manuals. I still have a piece of her gold work hanging in my home. My mother trained as a dressmaker at what is now called the London School of Fashion. Her beautiful apprentice samples are stored safely in archives and a constant source of inspiration to me. I luckily picked up both of their skills. From a child I was constantly creating: embroidery, tapestry, tatting, macramé-ing, earning extra pocket money from the age of 11. Now the 4th generation has picked up the threads … and is thriving in wonderful London town, as did the 3 generations before her. She’s currently studying for a degree in Fashion Marketing at the University of East London.
I am so proud of her.
Bag designed and made by Joëlle, from her CHIP collection, summer 2017