Chit Chat Tuesday: Meet Jennifer Duthie designer of Skribbies Children’s Footwear.

blog cct jennifer duthie skribbiesGood morning good morning! What do we think of the saying ‘April showers bring May flowers?’ I am hoping that this is the case and that we won’t be forecasted with too many more ‘showers!’

I hope that you have all had a fabulous week! It has all been happening in the Circus London PR office! There have been a numerous amount of cartwheels and handstands going on as we embark on some new exciting journeys! Watch this space!!

Joining me this week on CCT is young entrepreneur Jen from children’s footwear brand Skribbies! I had the pleasure of meeting Jen a couple of weeks ago when she came in to the Circus office to borrow some of our SS14 samples for an exciting Skribbies campaign shoot! The images which were shot by Tom Leighton have now been released and can be seen below!

We think that the photos look FAB and were so happy to see that Scotch Shrunk and Soft Gallery had been used!

Thank you thank you!!

Anyway enough from me! Let’s get to it…

Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background…

I am a young(ish) 28 year old entrepreneur who single with no kids (well apart from a dog and two cats who are all rescues from the streets of India). Before starting Skribbies and while I was developing the product/brand I launched a few online ventures focusing on the Indian consumer market. Prior to that, I worked in online advertising and in banking for Lehman Brothers which I did unfortunately lose on 15th September 2008. I have no professional or educational history in fashion or footwear just a great idea that I knew kids would love.

 

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How did Skribbies come about?

I was reminiscing about when I was a kid and how much I enjoyed fabric painting on t-shirts. It struck me that it would be a cool idea to be able to draw on your shoes but also be able to wipe it off and start again. I thought the idea would already exist but decided to do some research anyway. This is when I realised I had stumbled across a simple but brilliant idea! This is when the real hard work started as I then had to design and develop an actual product.

You’re right – I used to always make mistakes when I was drawing and wishes I could start afresh! Why the name Skribbies?

It is a fun play on the word scribble. We wanted something that was fun and childlike so Skribbies was an obvious choice.

Was fashion a direction you always thought you would go in?

No not at all! It was something I never imagined I would get into. I studied business and actually worked in online advertising and then banking.

For me, Skribbies was just a great idea which happened to be a fashion product. I am lucky that I have friends and family in the industry so they have been able to advise me on the areas my knowledge was lacking. I have also ensured I surrounded myself with mentors in the industry.

It’s funny how things turn out sometimes! Tell us about the brand…

Skribbies is a brand with customisation at the core. We are passionate about retro-play and getting kids spending more time being creative and expressing themselves rather than being glued to electronic devices. The Skribbies brand stands for being fun, cheeky and creative.

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I think that’s something which is so important for kids! As you said – enough of being glued to these electronic devices 24/7! Where do you draw inspiration from?

The idea for Skribbies came from me remembering the joy I had as a kid! I loved being able to be creative! Also from my time as a play volunteer at Bimingham Children’s hospital where I studied for my degree.

I draw inspiration from lots of places. I see things at trade fairs, read about cool things or take best practices from the brands I love or work with in the kids’ industry.
cct skribbies kids sat down
What exciting projects have you been working on?

At the moment the #popathof Popup shop in House of Fraser Oxford Street is taking up most of my time. Skribbies has been selected to do a popup and we’re putting a lot of time and effort into making our 2 week concession in store an amazing and memorable time. We’ve re-shot our collection and are planning cool activities like a photo booth and giveaways with every Skribbies in-store purchase. We’re working with some really cool brands on this as well.

We were so pleased at Circus London PR that you came to us to use our samples for the shoot! We think that the photos look fab! Thank you so much! How did these projects/opportunities arise?

The #PopatHof Popup shop was a competition through the Great Retail Revival. I had to send in a video pitch and was selected to go in to pitch to a panel of judges. Skribbies was one of 10 brands selected to popup in store.
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That’s amazing – congratulations! If you could have any celeb wearing your brand who would you choose?

I would really love to get Suri Cruise or one of the Beckham kids wearing Skribbies as they are kids that are synonymous with fashion and would give the brand some amazing recognition.

I’m with you on that one! Little Suri and the Beckham’s are such fashionistas! What have we got to look forward to with Skribbies?

Loads!! We have so many exciting plans in the pipeline. In May we are part of the #PopatHof Popup shop in House of Fraser, Oxford Street, London. Alongside 9 other brands we will be hosting a concession store on the ground floor.

We are also working hard to get Skribbies into more major UK retailers so the brand is more visible.

Alongside this we are growing the international side of our business designing a range for a French retailer and creating agreements with distributors in Europe and North America. The most exciting thing for us is our new product plans. We are looking to do both new styles of footwear as well as expanding the customisation theme onto other kids products.

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Wow you have so much going on at the moment! What are your fashion essentials?At the moment is it all about comfy shoes as I am travelling a lot at the moment or attending events where I am on my feet for prolonged hours.

I am lusting after a Michael Kors handbag which I hope to treat myself to when we reach our next business mile stone.

My favourite fashion item I own is a beautiful necklace I bought a year ago in India. Every time I wear it I get tonnes of compliments.

We are trainer crazy in the office so I agree with you on comfy shoes! They are an essential in my eyes which then leads me on to my next question – If you could be a pair of trainers apart from Skribbies which pair would you be?

I would probably be a pair on Hummel sneakers. They are a European brand who have reinvented themselves and managed to successfully move their brand from being dated to being very hip and cool.

Their sneakers are also high top style which is the style we launched Skribbies with so of course I have an affinity to be in favour of them!
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Where can individuals buy your brand from?

They can buy on our website www.skribbies.com or between 12th-26th of May on http://www.houseoffraser.co.uk or in the Oxford Street House of Fraser store.

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Thank you so much Jen for joining me on CCT today! It was great to find out more about yourself and all of the exciting projects you have going on for Skribbies! Hopefully I will be able to pop down to HOF to see you!Join me next week for lots more chinwagging and gossip! Until next time – Big hugs and kisses Kate xox

Images courtsey of www.photosbytomtom.com

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