To help celebrate their 5th birthday, we are posting about URSA London today, sharing this exclusive interview with founder Lucy Favell. Now incase you haven’t encountered URSA London (where have you been?!?) here’s a quick intro to this luxury online boutique, and to Lucy herself…
A personal love of discovering new designers inspired Lucy to create URSA, providing a platform of support for the new wave of emerging talent from the UK and Europe. URSA is now globally renowned for being the online destination to discover unique, fresh and exciting luxury fashion & jewellery (which is why we LOVE it), and over the past 5 years they have showcased some new designers who have now become huge fashion names. Another reason why we think URSA is so fabulous is that they support and promote sustainable manufacturing methods with over half of their featured designers manufacturing in the UK or Europe using traditional techniques. We are fascinated by the story behind URSA London and so we put some questions to Lucy Favell.
Lucy Favell, URSA London’s founder
Blink: I love the background behind your name. How did you come to that decision?
Lucy Favell: I’ve always been obsessed with the stars and constellations. I loved the strength of the name Ursa. It’s powerful, enlightening and inspirational, all at the same time. Also the fact that it is synonymous with the Great Bear, home to some of the brightest new stars in the hemisphere. URSA is home to some of the brightest new stars of fashion. It was the perfect fit!
Blink: What is your proudest URSA moment?
Lucy Favell: I am proud of everything that the team have achieved over the past 5 years. One thing that fills me with pride is the growing fan-base we have across the world, and all of the amazing feedback we get from both customers and designers.
Blink: Could you name some designers that you backed at the outset of their careers who have now become big names?
Lucy Favell: I am not afraid to take risks with my buying, and i am proud to see designers URSA supported first enjoying great success. Labels such as Soulland, E Tautz, Charlie May, J JS Lee, Imogen Belfield are all on the ascendant which is such a joy to see.
E Tautz SS16
Blink: What has been your biggest surprise at URSA over the past 5 years?
Lucy Favell: My biggest surprise in launching a UK online store is since the onset we attracted a global customer, in fact most of our customers are in the USA and Asia. We are excited to be getting more UK customers now as consumer confidence returns.
Blink: You are celebrating your 5th birthday today. Are you where you planned to be as a business by year 5?
Lucy Favell: I would be lying if i said 100% yes, however what we have achieved since launch is incredible considering we are still a wholly independent business. Running a start-up retail/tech business, everything is constantly evolving, and you have to keep evolving with it. I am incredibly ambitious and have exciting plans for URSA with more exclusive collaborations and new label launches in the months and years ahead.
Blink: What saying best sums up your approach at URSA?
Lucy Favell: always look ahead to the future.
Blink: How are you planning to celebrate your 5th birthday?
Lucy Favell: Our 5th birthday is such a milestone for us and to celebrate over the next 12 months we are launching a series of exclusive pieces created by our incredible designers. Starting this December with a unique diamond pendant created by Imogen Belfield.
Blink: What does sustainable fashion mean to you?
Lucy Favell: URSA is the antithesis of fast mass-produced fashion from the high street. All of our designers work in a sustainable way, for every garment or piece we are able to trace where it was produced down to the fabric or materials. Over half of our labels manufacture in the UK, which we really support and want this to eventually become the norm in luxury fashion. Our discerning customers do not mind paying more for luxury fashion if it has been made to exceptional standards and will last. I love seeing pieces bought from URSA five years ago still being worn and still looking brand new.
Blink: What styles do you find yourself repeatedly drawn to, season after season?
Lucy Favell: All of our designers have a distinctive signature, this is what makes them special, so I aim to capture this each season, mixing it with some fresh styles. The key for me is not to follow trends as this ensures that all of our styles will be investment pieces to be treasured for years to come.
V Jewellery Baguette and Hollow lobe earrings from URSA London
Blink: What makes Ursa so different to all of the other online luxe fashion retailers?
Lucy Favell: Our curation of designers is what makes us so different, and as we are often first with new notable designers, customers are guaranteed to find something sartorially fresh and unique.
Blink: What from Ursa’s current offer would you most like to find wrapped up under your Christmas tree?
Lucy Favell: I love diamonds, so i am coveting our exclusive Imogen Belfield Diamond Star pendant to commemorate our 5th birthday! I am dropping plenty of hints!
Blink: Who is the designer that you are currently most excited about?
Lucy Favell: I am excited by all of the labels on URSA, all of our designers are consistent in creating pioneering collections each season, which keeps us one step ahead. We have many new labels about to launch in the months ahead, I am very excited about that!
URSA London, the luxury online boutique
Thank you so much for the time you gave to us Lucy and happy birthday URSA! For more of our interviews with brilliant creatives, just click here. For more great posts about retail news, then look here.