Clare Vivier noticed a need for functional yet fashionable laptop cases. She's now at the helm of Clare V., one of the world's most coveted accessories brands...
Ask Clare Vivier about her top three business tips for those wanting to start an accessories line and she cuts straight to the chase: “Be patient. It doesn’t happen overnight, but with the right direction and singular vision, great things can happen.” If anyone should know, it’s Vivier. Last year, the former journalist opened a Clare V. store in San Francisco, her 7th US store. Whether it’s her sweatshirts emblazoned with witty slogans or her chic handbags which are loaded with personality, Vivier designs the kind of pieces we want in our closet. For the record, her favourite colour combination is “bleu, blanc and rouge, always.” When we visit Vivier in her LA home, she’s candid about the reality of juggling motherhood with a business that’s growing rapidly. “Finding the balance between motherhood and work is challenging. Time management is a real struggle for working parents. I’m fortunate to have a husband who really steps up and pitches in when we need him to and that’s helped to keep our family moving forward,” she says. We couldn’t wait to find out more about what goes on behind the scenes in the world of this talented accessory designer Photography: Jenna Louise Potter
How would you describe yourself in three words?
Determined, ambitious and creative.
What has motherhood taught you so far?
Patience and thinking beyond and outside of oneself. My son truly teaches me something every day.
What advice would you give to your younger self?
To not take myself, or anything, as seriously as I did. It all matters, but perspective is everything and I think that’s something you master with age.
Growing up, did you always love fashion?
I did. I learned to sew at a young age, and I always had a creative eye that enabled me to put things together in a truly unique way. It was always something that intrigued me and I was passionate about for as long as I could remember.
What’s the best style advice you’ve ever been given?
Always have something to change into. There are many days where I’ll change at least something I’m wearing halfway through the day, whether it’s a shirt or shoes, and knowing I have that added option is a comfort.
What did your own mother teach you about life and motherhood?
To be fair and just. My parents both taught me a great deal about justice and I’m continually doing my best to impart these lessons onto my son.
How would you describe your interior style?
Our house is a bit eclectic and reflects a lot about our personalities and our travels. It has pieces that we’ve collected over the years and each tells a story, which is what I love most.
Did your career change after you became a mother?
I took some time off after I became a mother to focus more time on my son, Oscar. I wouldn’t change that time for the world, but I’m also so grateful that I took the time for myself to revisit my passion and develop the line, even though he was still quite young. I think my working has benefited the both of us.
What's the best career advice you’ve ever been given?
I still listen to the advice to not be distracted by the competition and to keep your head down — and your blinders on. It has been incredibly beneficial as I’ve grown the business to really just stay true to what I believe and what we’re doing because it’s that singular vision that’s gotten us to where we are. To shop the Clare V. range, go to www.clarev.com