Wedding Trader gets into conversation with Daniel Lee, the new name at Veromia who puts ‘special’ into every occasion
When did you join Veromia Group?
I started with the Group in 2018.
Some background please – where did you study design?
I attended Central St Martins and graduated with a BA in Fashion Design.
So what was your first job in fashion?
I became design assistant with Frank Usher.
Take us through your career path from there. Which houses have you worked with and in what capacity?
I was with Frank Usher in the Dusk division as design assistant, and then moved on to design manager for both Frank Usher and Dusk, and then head of design for Dusk. I moved on to Morreko where I was merchandise director, and then joined John Charles where I was head designer until 2017.
Which area of fashion most appeals to you today and why?
All facets of occasionwear, which allows me to express myself creatively across all the areas within that particular sector.
And what appealed to you most about joining Veromia?
The range of lines the Group offers allows me to exercise my desire to create across the whole spectrum of occasionwear. I was also delighted to work with Vivien Felstein who has the confidence and vison to allow me, as design director, maximum scope to express myself and work in an environment which values and nurtures talent and creativity.
So which brands in the portfolio will you be focusing on?
Three – Irresistible, Dress Code and Veromia Occasions.
Do you see introducing many changes to the individual brand personalities?
We are on a journey to give Veromia and each line in the portfolio a modern, fresh and confident image that clearly reflects all the different aspects of the occasionwear market.
What inspires you?
Making a woman feel beautiful on that very special day or occasion .
Talk us through the process, right from the start. Do you have a vision for each collection? What comes first, the design or the fabric?
The vision starts with the personality of each label and the woman it serves. I find beautiful fabric to enhance that personality and create shapes and looks which will help define each collection and provide a woman with a choice that works for her and that special occasion she is dressing for.
Do you have fabrics that are exclusive to the label?
Yes we do have a range of fabrics exclusive to Veromia.
Where do you source fabrics and trimmings?
We search and source from the best houses across Europe and Asia.
How many pieces will you have in each of the ranges?
There will be around 25 to 30 in each label – choice is vital today.
How important is plus-size options in your on-going vision?
We make beautiful clothes for all sizes and our Dress Up collection caters specifically to the woman with curves.
Has the market changed a lot since you first started designing?
Oh yes… and it continues to change all the time as tastes and shopping habits move in new directions.
What are the main changes?
More for less; more accessible, wearable fashion that is less constrained by a particular expectation perhaps driven by age or convention.
What can retailers expect to see at Harrogate in September – what surprises do you have waiting?
You will see a more confident, stronger identity across our occasionwear offering. I am very excited about our palette and new silhouettes and detailing.
Any special promotions planned at the Harrogate show?
We are confident that our designs will speak for themselves and people will recognise the quality, style and development of our various lines.
Prices – how much do they influence the consumer buying decision?
Like most things, clothing is price sensitive – people will spend for that special occasion but they still want good value and something which adds to their wardrobe and choices.
Three pieces of advice to retailers? Keep the buying pattern dynamic, continually evolve and reflect the current times and trends rather than relying on more of the same.
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