Darling Editor Marja-Leena Toseland talked to Lucy Choi, the woman behind the affordable luxury shoe brand, Lucy Choi London
As niece to celebrated couture shoe designer Jimmy Choo OBE and sister to Sandra Choi, Creative Director of Jimmy Choo, shoes are very much in Lucy’s blood. Lucy was fortunate to grow up close to her uncle and spent hours in his workshop where she learned first-hand how to design and create the perfect shoe. However, Lucy didn’t want to take the obvious route of joining the family business. Instead she headed to the corporate world to build a successful career in finance and sales. She decided to follow her heart and dream. In 2012 Lucy Choi London was launched, a forward-thinking brand for the next generation of savvy shoppers.
You are clearly an incredibly talented designer and very creative. What kept you away from your ‘calling’ until 2012?
I always knew early on in life I wanted to work in the fashion world, having been around my uncle and feeling inspired by the art of shoe making. I could have chosen an easier path and joined the family business but decided that it was important to have an understanding of the business world under my belt first so launched my career working in the city. After 10 years as MD at a luxury footwear brand, I felt it was time to develop my brand. I took a big risk, using all my savings and even selling my flat to launch my company. It was a risk that truly paid off and we are now in the process of an investment campaign to take us to the next level.
Being a mother to two, with your oldest child born around the time when you started your business. How have you managed to build a successful brand at the same time as bringing up a young family?
I am grateful for having a business and a family, but like every working mother it is never easy trying to juggle everything. I work as many hours as I did before I had children, but on less sleep! I never do anything by halves and believe in going for things and never looking back. However, of late I’m sure I can identify with every working mother who has had to balance homeschooling with their career, it has certainly taken that challenge to the next level, but we can all only do our best. My ’to-do’ list is as long as my arm.
What is the essence of Lucy Choi shoes?
My brand offers affordable yet luxury designer footwear for every occasion and all ages without compromising on what I call the three 3Cs: Comfort, Craftsmanship and Character. I love to experiment with different materials and colours so that my shoes have a unique twist. You can be a yummy mummy, working lady or rock chic and step out in my shoes!