For the past decade we have had many more successful women that created prosperous businesses. As we all know there was always a controversy about women working and how successful they are allowed to be.
However a few women have broken that awful bubble. Victoria Beckham used her connections and created her own line that is extremely successful. ‘Her dreams came true in 2011 when she won the Designer Brand of the Year at the British Fashion Award,’ Marie Claire stated.
Cath Kidson created a multination business where she brought a piece of England in everyone’s cupboard. Cath Kidson created her own fashion label that is one of the most recognisable brands in terms of pattern and style. Furthermore seeing that there many women shining, it was even more difficult to find someone that succeeded within the English fashion sports industry. There are many female athletes but how about women that give us knowledge of the fashion sports industry?
After thorough research, Fashion Recipe wants to present a very special woman that managed to create what most people find impossible. Sadie McLeod. Sadie is not only an incredible mother but also a business owner. Having worked for Conde Nast she then decided to start her own venture. Sadie is now the proud owner of Hip&Healthy, one of the most popular websites for sportswear and activewear.
Hip&Healthy is targeted for women that have time and money to work out and look good. There is a big range of clothing starting from yoga mats to leggings. Having interviewed her made Fashion Recipe even more inspired to transmit that message to the audience. Sadie’s job at Hip and Healthy is basically everything. She overseas all aspects of the business as she does all the buy in and retail.
Despite the trust she has in her employees Sadie always looks at the new upcoming brands to her website and decides whether they are suitable for what she is looking for. As Sadie states ‘the final decision will always be mine.’ She doesn’t miss to overlook on the editorial side as well. Sadie clearly concludes that as a business owner of an online retail business, she will make all the decisions and it all makes sense. If you are a proud business owner and have an attachment and love for what you do you will always want to play part in the decision making process as no one else would do it as well.
Sadie always had her own vision and that translated to her website. She believes that they are two reasons that contributed to the simple but yet sophisticated layout of her website.
‘My background was in publishing. I was working for Conde Nast. I was constantly working and reading beautiful stylish magazines. I had the inspirations for my website from all the beautiful magazines and designs on Conde Nast. Secondly I have an amazing web developer, who is amazing and I wouldn’t be able to do it without her. I always knew the style I wanted however I could never create it so that is what she actually creates it and puts my thoughts into real visions.’
Hip & Healthy features brands that are very different from the usual ones you would find on the market. They are extremely high-end, fashionable and perfect to work out in. Simply put they are not for the average woman. Sadie accepts to sell brands after she has decided that they deliver on both function and style. Her process is surprisingly interesting because she will wear each piece until she feels comfortable enough. It all sounds very exciting as she constantly receives samples from brands. One of the most important aspects that Sadie fully takes into account is that having only a beautiful brand doesn’t do the job anymore. We live in a world that is so health oriented and functionality plays a crucial role. As Sadie says ‘ It needs to live up to these particular markets.’
Seeing how many aspects Sadie has to juggle in her life in order to keep the business running Fashion Recipe was extremely interested to know how her typical day is like.
‘I have a small son so I don’t get to work until half an hour later. All my team gets before me, so I end up at work at about 10 am hopefully already done a work out before hand.’
When Sadie gets the time to sit down the first thing she does is check her email. It is very important to do so in order to always keep track of what is happening. She finds it extremely important to have a daily meeting with the staff in order to figure out what is to come and if any issue has arose. Customer queries are very important for an online business because you want to be satisfying your client. Sadie then does a bit of writing for the website and reaches out with already partnered companies. She often eats at her desk and has meetings all day long after that. As she has an 18- month old son she goes back to her son after that and enjoys the time she has with her family.
Working for Hip & Healthy would be a cool opportunity as the dress code is extremely relaxed. If they are not in meetings the staff come with their yoga pants and favorite sneakers that they would be testing. Sadie never wears make up to the office because as it is a women environment it is very relaxed and definitely not pretentious.
‘Usually interns always ask how to dress and in the first week they always dress quite cool and sophisticated. In the second week they just get the vibe that we live in leggings so they end up doing the same thing. It is important to wear the stuff we sell and to live in it.’
As a successful businesswoman Sadie is most proud of for having her son 18 months ago. She truly believes that being a mother is an extremely hard job. However it seems that being a mother and a business owner is the most difficult task.
‘Managing to keep the business afloat is very difficult to do when you also have a family to manage, and I must say I am just passing by.’
The second thing she is more proud of for achieving is working with Liberty.
‘In terms of work I am extremely proud that we have been working with liberty. I mean as a founder you are always striving for more and to achieve more. You always look for that next target, I always feel like I haven’t reached my potential yet.’
Sadie’s advice for success is like the Nike’s motto; Just do it. She doesn’t mean it in a cheesy manner. She insists that there is no need to make your product absolutely perfect because people get caught up with creating something perfect before it has reached the market. One aspect that matters is that you keep on improving your product depending on what the market is asking for. The initial stages of a business are always a soft test. Sadie’s advice for success also lies within the connections you make with people. She believes that it is crucial to meet with customers and brands for coffee rather than solely speak on the phone.
‘People in London don’t understand that and always say that they are too busy however the benefit is incredible. You build proper strong relationships. Especially as women we can properly bond together. Building relationships online.’
Sadie Reid has given a lot of advice for women out there that want to start their own business. ‘There are now 1.5 self-employed women in the world and 17% of the world is made up of women that are business owners’ Prowess states online. More women like Sadie Reid will keep on increasing these statistics due to the empowerment they give to others.