INTERVIEW: The Designers Behind the Brand – SABO SKIRT
By Rebecca Simpson
From the humble beginnings of running their business out of an empty bathroom, Sabo Skirt has now become a globally recognised brand. They last year hosted two star-studded parties for Coachella and the VMAs in LA and have begun spotting their clothes on celebs including Gigi Hadid, Vanessa Hudgens and Charlotte Crosby.
They recently launched their new sister label, Sabo Luxe at New York Fashion Week in September among an amazing group of talented Australian designers in the inaugural Fashion Palette show, and have been working to expand the existing Sabo Skirt brand through the introduction of new sub-brands including sleep and formal wear.
Things won’t be slowing down this year. They recently took out a place in Forbes first ever 30 Under 30 Asia list in February, named among some of the top young innovators, entrepreneurs and leaders in the retail and ecommerce category, launched a new Sport Luxe range, and have been invited to show at NYFW in September for the second time.
Tell us about the birth of Sabo Skirt. Sabo Skirt started as a creative outlet and blog while we were studying at university. We both shared a great love for clothes and wanted to share our style with others. We used to take photos of each other and then post to the blog. We had no idea that it would take off like it did. Everyone wanted to buy what we were wearing, and so the site was born.
What roles do you both play within Sabo Skirt label? To start off with, we both shared duties equally. Within the first year, we discovered that we both had strengths in different areas of the business. Thessy is now Creative Director, focussing on managing the design team and Instagram content, while Yiota is Managing Director with a focus on business strategies, procedures and marketing.
Your Sabo Luxe range is showing at New York Fashion Week in September, how’s it all coming along and what insight can you give us about the collection? We’ve been lucky enough to have been invited back to showcase the Sabo Luxe label for the second year in a row. Last year’s showcase was a real milestone for us as a brand. We couldn’t be more excited to be showing again. We can’t wait to show the world this collection. You can expect to see a slightly more floaty collection with more feminine touches and basic silhouettes.
I can’t imagine two days are ever the same for you two, but what do most days consist of at SABO SKIRT HQ? You’re right, no day is ever the same for us. Most days we spend perfecting designs and liaising with our manufacturer. We take the design process very seriously. We don’t let ourselves be rushed by deadlines. We take out time so they are the best they can be.
We are often on location shooting our new collections. We have worked with some amazing talent recently. We shot with Hanalei Reponty for our latest drop of Sabo Luxe, Natalie Roser for our new Sport Luxe collection, and Maya Stepper and Meredith Mickelson for Sabo Skirt.
We’re also constantly working on our website to give our customers the most up-to-date and seamless experience, as well as refining our internal processes to really maximise our efficiency as a business.
Seeing your pieces on fashion forward woman such as Gigi Hadid and a personal favourite of mine, Vanessa Hudgen’s must be such a fulfilling moment. Tell us about the first time you spotted one of your pieces on a celebrity. We’ve had some great highlights so far, one of which was when Ariana Grande started following us on Instagram. But, spotting our pieces on some of our favourite celebs was mind-blowing! We draw so much inspiration from these amazing women every day, they are our style icons, so to spot them wearing our pieces was a pinch yourself moment.
Something I personally admire within your collections is the versatility of the pieces you select. Is that a design feature you look for in apparel? Since the beginning, it’s always been important to us to design styles that we personally love and want to wear ourselves. We both have our own clear personal styles but, they are always evolving which means our collections do too. Being in the fast fashion industry it can be a challenge to keep things fresh but it we think of it as a good challenge. It keeps us on our toes and pushes us to produce better pieces every time.
As you will know, our Who Loves That readers have a strong passion for Interior Design. What are your personal interior styles? We LOVE interior design. We’ve just finished a redesign of our office. The space you work in directly affects your productivity and creativity which is why we like to work in a beautiful space that is both inspirational and aspirational. We work long hours so it helps us to stay motivated.
Our interior design style until now has been largely inspired by the Sabo Skirt aesthetic. More recently we’ve been drawing inspiration from Sabo Luxe. We love muted tones and minimalism, balanced with a slight rustic feel. Luxurious textures are a big feature – we love worn woods, leather and a little bit of fur for a softer touch here and there.
We work alongside an incredible interior designer, Tara Dennis from TD Creative. She understands our style so well and has reflected this across not only our office but our weekender too, and we are working on a big secret project together that will be revealed later this year.
Finally, a massive Congratulations is in order for being placed on Forbe’s 30 under 30 Asia list. What else do you hope to achieve within the year both business and personal? We are currently working on some amazing new capsule collections that will really take our business to the next level. These are to be released by the end of this year and include our very first wholesale collection.
We also mentioned earlier a big project that we are working on. This is a really exciting one for us! We can’t say too much yet but we wanted something to make a big splash for our brand both domestically and internationally. All we will say is that it is big and it travels!