26 April 2016

Roberta Einer: the Emerging Designer to Watch

Roberta Einer

10 months ago, Roberta Einer was still in school. She studied at Westminster, my school (London College of Fashion's) sister school. Today however, flipped from ten months ago, Roberta is at the front of the class, instead of in it, sharing with us her crazy journey and lessons learned. Talk about a prodigy.
If I didn't walk out of that talk feeling like the pressure was on for the next 10 months.. then something would be wrong. One couldn't help but leave in awe.

"She's just like us though?" said one of my fashion friends. Yes. She is just like us. Because unlike the other industry professionals that had come to talk to us with their life lessons, she looked, talked, and dressed like us 20 somethings.
Which was pretty fucking rad if you ask me.

Roberta Einer

Working days at school and embroidering in the likes of Alexandre McQueen and Balmain into the night: Roberta had the passion and fuel needed to launch her brand. But it wasn't always her intention, as she explained to us today, she never actually anticipated creating her own brand.

After she graduated, instead of going on holiday like her friends, she worked. She milked every opportunity that came her way, that led her from strength to strength: from insta-fame, to her feature in American Vogue, to a deal with Asian fashion mogul I.T. Hong Kong, and incredibly a partnership with Saks Fifth Avenue ("Can you be in new York by tomorrow night" she was told!).

With couture embellishments to drool over, and price points rivaling that of Gucci, being launched into luxury-dom in a matter of 10 months is merely a fantasy for most.

Roberta Einer
Gucci SS16, a competitor of Roberta.
Roberta Einer SS16

But it wasn't without merit; when I asked her how she got the confidence to play on this global playing field, with lawyers, numbers, and no PR agency to support her, so young and fresh: she laughed and responded that she had never cried so much, than in those first few months.
Roberta Einer

I would too: mass conglomerates chasing after you, trying to buy your brand.
When she applied to the BFC for their New Gen support scheme, they advised her to lower her price point and get an MA.

But Roberta saw her training, materials, and brand as luxury. Rightly so. Therefore she stuck by her guns and listened to herself... and look at her now.

Roberta Einer

"Don't listen to people, but question yourself" she said. "You need to be self critical". Was one of my favourite pieces of advice today.

As well as the way she measures her success by the autonomy of her brand:
"When you can go on holiday and close your computer for a week: that's how you rate your success".

When we asked what her next step was; 'online retail', such as Net-a-Porter, she suggested would be nice: but right now she is just focusing on delivering.
"It's my baby" she said, as I have heard time and time again from many others like her in this classroom.

I hope to one day be as young yet powerful, decided yet successful, and as grounded and driven, as Roberta Einer.
..and perhaps have my own little luxury brand baby to love and care for..

Keep your eyes on her. She's the one to watch.