I love Jo’s chic & easy style, she’s a pioneer for women and radiates so much energy & positivity – a big inspiration to me. Her huge success with Hey Jo has set the bar high for other designers to follow. We met for a chat at one of my favourite boutiques in Chelsea – Donna Ida (which btw stocks all Hey Jo’s colours) to talk body mantras, Hendrix & of course, Hey Jo…
So I’m guessing you are a big Hendrix fan?!
Hah yes! Whilst driving to my branding consultancy meeting for a logo, Hey Joe by Hendrix came on the radio… it’s a song which always makes me feel really good whenever I hear it. This completely resonated as Hey Jo is all about making you feel great, as well as looking good obviously!
Whats inspiring you this Autumn?
I’ve seen some great art in Paris. Met some great women doing inspirational things with their own businesses.
Top of your workout playlist ?
Bip Ling’s fun new track Bip Burger released this week – she’s brilliant!Work Bitch by Britney Spears, Outkast always makes me want to move my body and a couple of the funky new tracks from Janet Jackson’s album, Unbreakable, are excellent. I’m into dancing right now, so I love songs which make me want to move and groove!
How would you describe your style?
Grown up hip hop with a little sophisticated accessorising. I love footwear which promotes freedom of movement and will invest in stylish takes on the everyday, like great sneakers, we’re spoilt for choice right now, I’m like a kid in a sweetshop!
Do things which make you feel good, wear what makes YOU feel good.
I love to cook (for family & friends) and love to eat, I always have. I eat mostly fresh food cooked from scratch and a little raw each day. I’m not too hung up, I know what makes me feel lousy and so will try to keep clear of those things, 80:20 mostly. I love the odd glass of red wine.
Where did the inspiration come from to make such a classic wardrobe essential for Women?
The inspiration came from designing something for myself. I’m more interested in women’s lives in general, and leggings seemed a practical piece to start with, I was living in mine but unhappy with what was on offer. I wanted something stylish and flattering in fashionable colours other than black.
The Hey Jo collection is classic and keeps us coming back for more.. What are best styles for body shapes?
Cassini is our best selling style. It is a flattering cut with the seams coming to the from to the leg. As well as an elasticated waist it features a drawcord, low to mid rise. We find this style really does flatter most body types. We regularly hear that people are complimented when they wear them which is fantastic feedback (I wanted to create something flattering to most women). Classic is a simpler tight without the ankle zips with higher rise and longer leg length. These might flatter someone who is less happy with their middle area as it provides a snug support for the stomach.
The Classic lengthening leggings by Hey Jo
How do you relax after a busy week ?
I like to see friends who make me laugh. To achieve at least one relaxing moment with my husband and children. I love yoga which makes me breathe deeply, this is important and relaxing at the same time, killing two birds with one stone. A perfect weekend would include love, laughter and nurture…
A piece of advice would you give to aspiring designers wanting to start their own brand?
Don’t under estimate the hard work behind setting up a brand (with it own distinct identity) not just a collection, which is what it needs to be these days. I think sometimes people feel perhaps they will ‘just do this’ without realising the dedication needed behind success and with success comes more hard work!
You have a huge cult following, what do you feel has set Hey Jo apart from other luxury sportswear brands ?
I think to set yourself apart from any other brand you have to stay true to your vision and mission, you have people coming at you from all angles with ‘advice’ and ‘suggestions’ but ultimately you have to stay true to yourself. We are as much about practical style as we are about activewear, a luxury lifestyle staple with technical properties.
For our US & Aus readers can we pick a pair of Hey Jo’s up over there?
Yes we sell in the US and Australia…. our stockists are growing every month which is great, both in the premium denim fashion boutiques and high end activewear market, which was always my vision for Hey Jo.
PARIS/CAPE TOWN/ROME/SAN FRANCISCO … AAAGH TOO MANY!
RED WINE & CRISPS
Thank you Jo, we have so much love for you & your brand xx