Really chuffed at the moment as we have, thanks to a talented stylist Elaine Deed, had one of our hand pleated gold silk pleated evening dresses featured in the luxury magazine “Epicurean Life”. Unfortunately I cannot embed the image here but if you are really interested then you can click here and then go to Page 51 of the current issue (January to March 2011)

We have always maintained a philosophy of working with journalists and stylists to help them as much as we can to do their job. Whilst it is great to get the publicity the focus has always been to offer support to people who are often working at a very fast pace in a highly pressured environment. As a result we have gathered many friends along the way who have been or are at the top of their game. It is now more likely that these friends will be on the family Christmas card list than just the press list. Not only that, but the result of this friendly approach has led to Charles and Patricia Lester’s designs being featured in numerous high glossy publications worldwide.

Elaine Deed is a well respected Stylist and writer who works or has worked for numerous top publications including Hello Magazine, YOU Magazine, Sunday Times Style, Brides, Epicurean Life, Wedding Day & Brides, Tatler, Cosmopolitan, W Magazine, The Evening Standard, Drapers Record & Men’s Wear and so on – all in all an impressive list. Last November she styled the photographs for Coronation Street’s 50th Anniversary shoot for Hello and Julie Goodyear (Bett Lynch) was pictured wearing one of our dresses. (Sorry no pictures online so I can’t share them with you!)

I love this bit of her biography >>

“I have worked in the fashion media business for many years (I have pins older than some young stylists). So I have a vast range of experience in fashion, styling and working with people (not to mention a few divas). Oh and also working with kids and animals (and, if you want to know, elephants are the easiest).

As a stylist I could find myself surreally ironing dresses half way up a mountain one day and, the next, dressing Jerry Hall in a giant clamshell as Botticelli’s Venus. I have travelled all over the world with my prop kit, watching the sun rise in Hawaii – and sometimes not rising because of heavy cloud in other exotic destinations. I’ve been thigh deep in snow in Lapland and drenched by a monsoon in Miami. But, hey, I would never complain because what better way to make a living?”

Over the years we have met some extraordinary people with fantastic energy, enthusiasm and passion for what they do. We have met a few divas too – although they tend not to stick around in our address books for too long – at least that is if they don’t realise that we are human too. The best are down to earth, practical, immensely good humoured and fantastically hard working. They are always a joy to work with. Elaine herself has always been great and we will always do what we can to support her. Our clothes are always well cared for and treasured and more importantly her enthusiasm is always great encouragement for us to do what we can.

For some business owners they will not put the effort in either building these relationships nor going to the trouble of providing what the press people need. it is a shame as they are missing out. It is not unusual for us to tip the place upside down, drop all orders (where practical) to design, create, find whatever is required. People know that we will willingly go to great lengths to get them just what they need – if we can and are consequently not afraid to ask for the seemingly impossible. Is it worth it? Does it make business sense to do so? Absolutely. A reputation for being a kind person goes a very long way. For the family business it has resulted in hundreds of pages of features in the top publications in the world. (You can follow this link to view just a few samples) To buy that kind of exposure would have cost us hundreds of thousands of pounds in publicity. More importantly it has introduced us to some incredibly wonderful people who have extraordinary talents – very much more life-enriching than putting an ad in the paper.

For now though, I am grateful to Elaine and talented people like her. I would like to meet more. Not necessarily those who only work with high flying publications but real people who have a passion for beautiful creations. I want to connect with those who love the creativity, artistry and the craftsmanship of fine things and can write about them too. I have set up an affiliate scheme on our online shop so that those with a talent with words can benefit from writing about the designs and creations featured. It has already led me to some extraordinary individuals and I am looking forward to seeing how they unleash their own creativity very soon. I expect the journey to be an ongoing one full of inspirations and surprises – which will no doubt keep me on my toes and probably entertained.

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