Glamour Maestro:  Camilla Ridley, The Fashion Dynamo's adventures

Glamour Maestro: Camilla Ridley, The Fashion Dynamo's adventures

Meet Camilla Ridley behind Ridley London!
What’s special about what you do at Ridley?
We believe everyone’s unique, and an outfit that works brilliantly for one person can look terrible on another, but could equally work in a different fabric and with the right tweaks. At Ridley, we design and make our womenswear to order, so you can literally have any style customised to fit in any fabric. This means you will never see anyone in quite the same thing as you, and whether it’s a dress or a jumpsuit for a special occasion, a holiday, or something for everyday like a skirt, top or pair of trousers, we’ll make sure it's absolutely right so you’ll step out looking and feeling your very best. And by selling directly to the customer, we can reduce overheads, keeping our prices competitive, and still use the most incredible quality fabrics and traditional tailoring techniques which make an enormous difference to the way a garment looks, feels and lasts. We try our best to be as sustainable as possible, everything is responsibly sourced and by making to order there’re vastly reduced wastage and carbon footprint compared to the conventional mass produced fashion model so it’s win win. 
Tell us about your approach to design and what’s special about the latest collection?
Ridley collections are designed for the modern woman and her busy life. While the latest fashions undoubtedly have an influence, we try and design wardrobe classics that are incredibly useful, versatile and will always look and feel great. Whether it’s a special dress, or something simpler these are real investment pieces made from the most beautiful natural fabrics, and because they’re individually made to flatter and last, they’ll be worn more often. It’s that slow fashion philosophy of buying less but buying better. We get a lot of customer feedback of how easy and flattering Ridley garments are and how many compliments wearers receive. And we get a lot of repeat business, which really speaks volumes. Our latest collection is designed with winter parties and celebrations in mind. There are lots of beautiful and very easy, flattering dresses, in rich silk velvets and some incredible vibrant metallic silks. Some of the new velvet midi dresses are cleverly tailored to elongate and enhance our best features. There are also some sexy new jumpsuits in metallic silks and velvets, new ra-ra dresses at mini length  and our beautifully tailored velvet trouser suits are really chic. 
Tell me about how you started your business / Ridley London and the important lessons you have learned?
Officially the Ridley London label has been going since 2016, however I have developed and built a number of different womenswear and fashion businesses since I left university thirty years ago. I started out using my skills as a textile designer, creating and manufacturing textile driven women's accessories, particularly velvet scarves, from a small stall in Camden Market in 1992. I loved travel and took some samples with me on a holiday to Australia and plucked up the courage to pick up the phone to a few department stores. I was incredibly surprised when they placed an order for 2000 pieces, which I got manufactured by the local women of the tiny village of Fish Creek (where my boyfriend at the time was from). I was on my way and a couple of years later was supplying department stores all over the world including Harrods, Barneys in the US and Isatan in Japan. When the trend for accessories changed I branched out into made to measure women’s occasion wear and opened my first Camilla Ridley shop on the Fulham Road. Over the years I have designed  and made shoes in Florence, handbags, dresses, coats, even childrenswear and bed linen, all with a distinctive high quality textile DNA. Most importantly, I have been really lucky to have met some incredible women through the business and have had some amazing employees, all of whom have helped my business immeasurably.
Ridley has been worn by a number of fashion influencers including: HRH The Princess of Wales, Fashion Editors including Anna Murphy and Lisa Armstrong, Kat Farmer, Lisa Snowden, Amanda Holden and Kate Garraway.
Back to blog