Adored by A-Listers since 2002, Coco Ribbon is a multi-award winning fashion brand, the wellspring of Alison Chow.
Counting style icons and doyennes of the fashion world Poppy Delevingne, Sienna Miller, Jo Malone and Elle Macpherson as clients, Coco Ribbon started its life as a high-end lifestyle boutique in Notting Hill, London which Alison and her then business partner, Sophie Oliver, launched in 2002. The brand enjoyed exponential growth over a short period, quickly opening a store on Sloane Square opposite Chloé, retailing with Harvey Nichols and Neiman Marcus and featuring in British Vogue, amongst other prestigious glossies. The Coco Ribbon boutique was an investor’s dream. Then, the GFC hit and the ladies went their separate ways.
Now living in Sydney with her husband and three children, Alison has transitioned from retailer to designer, relaunching the brand five years ago, and creating exquisite, unique collections under the Coco Ribbon brand.
I caught up with Alison during the launch of Coco Ribbon’s Spring/Summer 2016 collection in Hong Kong last week. We chatted away while she set up the showroom: negotiating with tradesmen, steaming clothes, merchandising to perfection, and patiently posing for photos in 99% humidity. There’s no doubt that this lady can multi-task! Aside from her bachelor’s degrees in Commerce and Marketing, this talent is likely key to Alison’s success in running an international fashion brand AND rearing three small human beings.
I can barely get my butt out of bed in the morning, let alone juggle Alison’s load. Feeling a little dumbstruck, I wondered “how on earth does she do it?!” Graciously, Alison offered a little insight:
For those aspiring fashion designers, Alison’s advice is,
Known for its luxe-boho style and signature embellishments and prints, Alison’s time in Hong Kong, London, and New York, as well as her Chinese heritage, continue to influence her garment design and the label’s aesthetic. The result is expertly cut and effortlessly elegant pieces and potential go to Super-Hero outfits. You know the ones you reach for when you haven’t been to the gym for months, you worked until to 2am the night before and you’re feeling hollow, gross and flat? They fit you in all the right places, flatter your complexion, enhance your body shape and give you that little confidence boost? Super Hero outfits are not easy to come by, but I think Alison’s attention to detail and eye for flattering designs and elegant fabrics means that Coco Ribbon’s collection has “Super Hero” written all over it.
Speaking of work – for those, like me, who have to abide by the sartorial parameters (read: uniforms) imposed on a profession or industry, these outfits can be easily tweaked to ensure office apropos: power it up with tailored trousers, a silk blouse, statement jacket and court shoes, then lose the jacket (or add leather shorts) and incorporate a feather or sequin top and strappy heels to transition to rooftop drinks, dinner with friends or a hot date.
The quality and intricacy of the fabrics and designs struck me as soon as I arrived at the showroom. I couldn’t stop taking photos of the silks, prints, leather, feathers, and embellishments! Please indulge me as I share…
Please note that this publication is not an advertorial – no money or products were exchanged.