I love a really well cut, well fitting shirt. I don’t own nearly enough of them but I fell in love with Vaughan’s at first sight. With the cut of a man’s shirt but made for women, I instantly bought two and could do with a few more. In classic as well as bold colours, Vaughan only makes shirts and only makes them in silk. Sold online and delivered anywhere in the world for a flat fee, Lindsay’s shirts are underpinned by the idea of comfortable chic paired with laid-back luxury.
So without further a-do, please meet Lindsay Narain, founder and creative director of womenswear label Vaughan. Originally from the US, she has done a stint in Hong Kong and now lives in Singapore with her husband, son and dog.
Over to you Lindsay:
Vaughan is still very much in the start up phase, which means I handle almost every aspect of the business myself. It can be overwhelming, but that’s actually one of the things I like best.
6.30 am I haven’t used an alarm clock in three years. It used to be my body clock that woke me up, now it’s my eight month old son. I usually try to negotiate an extra 15 minutes of snuggling but I’m no match for a hungry Milkman.
7.00 am My morning latte is absolutely non-negotiable. The Husband is long gone so the Milkman and I have breakfast together. I’ll usually turn on the news to find out what’s going on in the world. Some days it’s world news, other times we watch Bloomberg.
8.00 am I work from home, definitely a tricky prospect (can you spot the toy box in the corner of the picture below?!). By 8.00am, I’m at my desk checking and responding to email from customers, retailers or suppliers.
My first order of business is usually to write a post for my blog. I find it’s a good way to switch on my creative brain. Writing my blog is one of my favorite parts of the day. It’s challenging to come up with new topics but I love that it’s an outlet for me to have a conversation with my customers. I usually share styling ideas, inspiration or news about the brand.
10.00am A perk of running my own business is that I can take advantage of off-peak hours at the gym. I meet my trainer 3 days a week for strength training and cardio. I’m pretty competitive so I usually call or email my husband after to humble-brag. Eeks.
I like to use my time in transit for social media. I LOVE Instagram, both for checking out my favorite personalities and also for posting behind-the-scenes shots from Vaughan.
12.00pm I eat lunch at home almost every day. Usually I have a salad with either grilled salmon or chicken. I am very much against eating at my desk so I tend to have lunch with the Milkman or use the time to read blogs or magazines.
I find inspiration in lots of different places. Sometimes it’s obvious, like seeing a crisp white shirt with a major party skirt. Other times, it’s a makeup pallet, a box of freshly sharpened colored pencils or even a piece of art that will spark my imagination.
12.30pm My mornings tend to be pretty busy so I save my afternoons for designing, special projects or meetings. I find that once I spend the morning clearing my desk of admin I’m much better able to focus on big projects.
Naturally, my most favorite thing to do is design a new collection. I’ll start by sketching out a couple of silhouettes. I focus on classic menswear inspired styling but I spend a lot of time thinking about subtle details that make the shirts very wearable for women. For example, I agonized over the placement of the buttons on the Hepburn shirt and the sheer paneling on the Bettie shirt. It is important to me that Vaughan shirts can work for many different occasions. Customers have told me that they’ve worn my shirts everywhere from weddings to horseback riding and to bed. To me, that is the ultimate compliment.
I love selecting the colors for each collection. First and foremost, I consider colors that are flattering. Shirt collars are designed to frame the face so I think it’s really important that they compliment a woman’s skin tone. This part of the job is also a bit analytical. I consider the colors that will be popular for the coming season and try to develop colors that will work with that pallet. Each shade is a custom creation for my collection so the possibilities are endless… a thrilling and daunting thought.
3.00 pm It’s time for my second (or third) latte. If I’m feeling peckish, I’ll nibble on Galler’s sugar free dark chocolate, raspberries or almonds.
3.15 pm I generally need to do a second round of admin about now. I’ll respond to email and ship any orders that have come in through my website.
3.45 pm Samples from my workshop will generally have come by now. I’ll often have a fit model over to try on the sample and I will try it myself.
I’m looking not only at the fit, but also how the shirt drapes and the comfort. It’s both an objective and subjective process that requires my tape measure, lots of photos and notes and a good deal of patience.
5.10 pm Before I wrap up for the day, I tidy my desk. I have no idea how I developed this habit because I am usually messy but it makes for a pleasant return to my desk in the morning.
5.15 pm I have a fairly rigid evening routine that I’m sure a lot of moms can relate to. The Milkman eats dinner, bathes, changes into PJs, reads a story, drinks his final bottle, says his prayers and goes to bed.
6.30 pm Time for a walk with my dog, Lady. She’s a Whippet mix from the Hong Kong Dog Rescue with a massive personality. Here she is in a rare professional moment:
8.30 pm I crack open a nice bottle of Bordeaux (antioxidants, right?). If it were up to me I’d have grilled chicken and veggies for dinner every night, but the Husband requires more variety so I try to get creative. We sit down to dinner and the evening is ours.