by Remi Betesh
From fashion director at Tatler to Elle Macpherson's personal stylist, and now a children's wear expert.. is there anything she can't do?
IF YOU HAD NOT GONE DONE THE FASHION ROUTE, WHAT WOULD YOUR DREAM JOB BE IN ANOTHER LIFE?
In another life, probably an Actor! That would have been a dream existence. I think I always had a bit of the acting bug in me and even once a Fashion Editor, enrolled for an evening course at Central School of Speech and Drama - for curiosity and interest’s sake rather than as a serious career move. It was such a thrill studying this craft and much harder than I thought it would be. Hollywood will always have some serious appeal but it’s for a very chosen few. But I did get a serious buzz from performing, and character analysis and the exploration of the pysche really interests me. Regular visits to the National Theatre fulfil that dramatic pull for the moment. Maybe I can do Extra work when I retire…
CAN YOU TELL US A LITTLE BIT ABOUT HOW LITTLE CIRCLE WAS CREATED?
Anna with her gorgeous three daughters
My business partner and I came from entirely different backgrounds (Lisa was in finance) and for over a decade we would sit, glass of bubbly in hand discussing what an incredible team we would make with our shared work ethic, contrasting skill sets and combined visions to create something of our own. It finally happened after we’d both had our second children and after an intense amount of research we confirmed a real opportunity in Children’s Fashion. Heavyweights like Gucci, Charlotte Olympia, Dolce, were all expanding into mini-me design and there was a buzz surrounding this ever expanding industry. We spent months meeting every contact possible, fleshing out our concept and sourcing exquisite, under the radar brands before employing a Graphic Designer from Mr Porter to help create our brand and slick website. We launched and things quickly took off - our international impact was pretty much immediate. We have customers from Japan to Croatia.
WHO IS THE ULTIMATE LITTLE CIRCLE CUSTOMER AND WHAT SETS LITTLE CIRCLE APART FROM OTHER CHILDREN'S CLOTHING BRANDS?
Definitely someone who has a keen sense of style, wants to dress their children as elegantly as they do themselves, and cares about buying better- we are all about unique design and superior quality. When we do our seasonal buy and source new designers, we make sure the pieces we curate feel really special and cannot be compared to what is available on the high street. At the same time, we are affordable luxury- our price points aren’t extreme. Particularly with my Fashion background, there is a reference to what is going on in Womenswear and incredibly chic mini-me styles are key. Our mantra is to be the Matches of the Childrenswear Industry- contemporary fashion on a modern website, finely curated for the time poor, fashion savvy parent.
IF THERE WAS ONE PERSON YOU COULD STYLE, WHO WOULD IT BE?
I think Kate Middleton does formal really well - safe but well. McQueen tailoring will always be hard to beat and she has narrow parameters within which to express her sense of style. But I would love to work with her on her everyday style. Her body is a dream to dress and there are so many new brands, especially emerging British designers, who we could work with to bring a more contemporary, iconic look with a nod to current trends.
WHO WOULD YOUR DREAM GUESTS BE AT YOUR DINNER PARTY, DEAD OR ALIVE?
Laurence Olivier (I’ve always loved him- surely the most charismatic actor to have graced our screens?), Richard Ayoade (his delivery is perfection and I am basically in friend’s lust with him), and I think Princess Margaret in her youth would have made a pretty exceptional dinner party guest…..and this sounds incredibly corny, but seriously- my husband. He is my partner in crime and there would be no point meeting all of these fabulous people if he wasn’t there to appreciate it with me.
WHEN YOU AREN'T WORKING, WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE SPOT TO HANG OUT AND RELAX IN LONDON?
As a family we visit Kenwood a lot - I grew up in Hampstead and its white stucco facade is one of my earliest visual memories. We used to go the Summer concerts there when I was a tiny girl - we’d take an evening picnic, sit on the hill overlooking the lake, listening to music. And the evening would end with a huge firework display, followed by me falling asleep in my mothers lap and being carried home. It didn’t get much better than that. Kenwood grounds are so varied- there is grandeur, expanse sitting next to meadows and wild woods. It offers the peace and wilderness we crave living an urban existence - it’s hard to believe you are in the heart of London.
DO YOU HAVE A FAVOURITE HOLIDAY DESTINATION AND WHY?
I have always and will always feel an affinity with Italy. I don’t know whether it’s my History of Art background or watching Room with a View when an impressionable teen, but the romance and overpowering poetic history of the place just fills me with complete joy. It has passion running through its fields, streets, architecture. And if you told me I had to eat pasta for eternity I’d be happy….
WHEN TRAVELING, WHAT WOULD BE THE KEY PIECES FOUND IN ANNA'S LUGGAGE?
I’m never without swimswear from my friend Sian Swimwear- having had three children, a super chic one piece is everything. I live in my Saint Laurent heart sunglasses and love to wear turbans and knotted headbands on the beach. It’s all about the statement, easy to wear dresses and brands like Ulla Johnson, Rejina Pyo, Zimmerman and Kalita normally fit the bill. Flats by Jimmy Choo and Brother Vellies. Lancaster suntan lotion and one of the many novels that pile up by my bed waiting to be read. And finally, as my friends will attest, I am never ever without Elnett. EVER.
DO YOU HAVE YOUR OWN SIGNATURE FRAGRANCE AND WHY?
Sadly not! I honestly don’t think I have ever found ‘the one’ and am a bit of a perfume hussy. I blame all those years at Tatler where I was gifted so many different bottles and became accustomed to rotating different scents. My husband will forever associate me with Jo Malone’s Lime Basil and Mandrin that I wore when we first met. For a heavier, evening scent I like Halfeti by Penhaligans and also Chanel’s Les Exclusifs Eau de Cologne.
WHEN IT COMES TO YOUR STYLE, WHERE DO YOU FIND YOUR INSPIRATION?
Instagram is an obvious platform - it has opened up the fashion industry and I’ve found so many new and exciting designers via social media. Styling Elle Macpherson has also had an impact on my own personal style- different proportions to dress (!) but she’s very considered in her approach to purchasing and suitability - its all about the investment piece. French Vogue will always be my magazine of choice and I tend to look to its glossy pages for high end inspiration.
SO, WHAT'S NEXT FOR ANNA BROMILOW?
It’s been an incredibly busy couple of years with the expansion of LITTLECIRCLE and also having our third child - a very long, relaxing summer ahead in Ibiza and Italy spending heaps of time with my children is in sight! There are some exciting professional developments taking place at the end of the year..so I need to be rested and ready to go.