We are delighted to share with you our interview “Questions and Answers with Daisy KNATCHBULL”, founder of The DECK London.
Carla MARTIN: Please introduce yourself for those who do not know you yet. Kindly tell us about your background and your business? How you decided to create your business? And what was your path to the role you have now?
Daisy KNATCHBULL: I have always had an interest in fashion, and from a young age worked within different roles in the industry, whether that was fashion journalism, styling or PR. I worked for the Fashion Director of the Sunday Times Style before moving to Huntsman for just over 3 years and becoming their Communications Director. I was lucky enough to be the first women to wear top hat and tails at Royal Ascot in 2016 whilst working for Huntsman and it was the reaction of the women and the press that made me realise there was a serious demand for women that wasn’t necessarily being met in the same way it was for men. It has never been a better time to be a women and things needed to change and so The Deck began – a business for women that understands the needs and wants of today’s females and empowers them through one of the greatest forms of expressionism – the way one dresses.
Sitting between the contemporary and the classic, the Deck provides today’s women with an unparalleled experience of craftsmanship, quality and fit whilst embracing modern femininity. The Deck’s ethos lies in the belief that no two women are the same and the made-to-measure offering embraces that. Providing uniquely tailored pieces with hundreds of cloth, lining, button, and monogramming choices, to satisfy any whim, for any women. Our made-to-measure offering starts at £2000 and includes two fittings (conducted in store) to create one’s unique suit or separates. Although based in London and offering an in-store experience, The Deck will be carrying out trunk shows to the US towards the end of this year to visit the many clients overseas.
CM: What does a typical working day look like for you?
DK: We have a lovely atelier amongst the hustle and bustle of the Kings’ Road below the wonderful Baar and Bass at 336 Kings Road. Our shop opens at 10am and closes at 7pm and can be open on weekends or later should a client wish. We also have the ability to see clients in their homes and offices. A typical day involves fitting with clients, meetings with press, editors, potential clients, potential partners. We have been so busy for which I am so grateful and I have a fantastic team that supports me on the journey of building the business and ensuring we reach as many amazing people as possible. My day always begins and ends with meditation which I think is an essential addition to my life and being able to build and run the business in the way I do.
CM: Tell us what is your success mindset?
DK: Don’t let fear of failure hold you back, always listen to your consumers’ needs and shape the business alongside that, and always try to get a good work/life balance.
CM: What was your biggest challenge on the personal side also business side?
DK: Starting your own business, particularly without a co-founder can be an incredibly lonely experience and a side that isn’t talked about enough. It can definitely come as a surprise when you realise its not always as glamorous as its cracked up to be. I think also ensuring your business doesn’t completely control your life and still managing to keep up with your friends and family and make enough time for them is a challenge but an important thing to stay on top of!
CM: I would like to know what is the best advice in business you have been given? May I ask who gave it to you?
DK: Hiring your team is one of the most important decisions you will ever make so do it right and always delegate where you are weak.
CM: For a young entrepreneur, what advice would you give?
DK: You can’t please everyone! I think this is such an important thing to realise not just for friends and family but suppliers, colleagues and clients! Also starting your own business will always come with its challenges. The highs are really high and the lows, very low. But it’s all apart of the process and thats what makes it so exciting.
CM: With everything you have achieved, what you would say your greatest achievement is?
DK: Leaving the security of a great job and salary to pursue my dream is the hardest but best decision I ever made.
CM: From your entire professional experience, what was your most exciting project up to now?
DK: Building this business of course! It is the most fantastic feeling when you are so passionate about something and then have the privilege of being able to actually do it and make it happen.
CM: What is your business current focus?
DK: To get as many wonderful women as possible in my suits and feeling stronger, more confident and happier for it! Lots of exciting things to come though so keep an eye out.
CM: What charity do you support?
DK: There are a few causes close to my heart – particularly those surrounding mental health, cancer in children and young people and gynaecological cancers in women. CLIC Sargent, James’s Place and Lady Garden are my go to.
CM: Who inspires you today?
DK: Lots of amazing people from Tory Burch to Ralph Lauren, Jo Malone, Mo Gawdat, Lauren Hutton and many more!
CM: Do you have a secret talent?
DK: I have an amazing memory for retaining random information (and a sort of short term photographic memory) for things such as the states of America in alphabetical order, the Kings and Queens of England in order of reign, every capital of the world (at one point), and many other random facts.
CM: You found your passion, in your opinion how does everyone find their own passion?
DK: I think it’s important to always have a dream. Wether thats small or big – something you can chase and to know that if you truly believe in something and want to make it happen, anything is possible. Dont be scared to leave your comfort zone and ask yourself everyday ‘what would you attempt to do if you couldn’t fail’. It changes your whole perspective on things. Fear stops us form doing so much.
CM: If you had the power to change just one thing in the world what would it be?
DK: Resolve all mental health issues – something that affects 1 in 3 people globally.
CM: Thank you so much Daisy for your time and kindness to answer my questions.