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LadyM Meets: A day in a life of a shoe designer

British shoe designer Sarah Watkinson-Yull designs court shoes with a twist.  After studying fashion and business management in London, latterly at Westminster Business School; Sarah started Yull Shoes her own shoe brand.

I’ve known Sarah since the start of LadyM Presents, so I thought it would be apt to start off a new series of the LadyM Meets interview series revisiting an old friend of LMP.  Especially as she designed my wedding shoes, more of those beauties later!

LadyM Meets: A day in a life of a shoe designer

As well as court shoes, Yull have branched out into Chelsea boots, mens footwear and even nail varnish to match your shoe colour!   You can see the collections right here at Yull. Now let’s crack on with the interview.

British shoe designer Sarah Watkinson-Yull

What encouraged you to get into this industry and what was your route into it?

I loved fashion as a teenager and wanted to work in the industry. I had wanted to get into dress design but fell into shoes through various jobs and work placements.

Yull Shoes

What is a typical working day for you?

My office is 5 minutes from my flat so usually in around 8.30 after walking little Jack our little office buddy. I get the admin out of the way before my colleagues arrive and we usually get down to planning the jobs for the day and tasks at around 10am. Then it’s PR pushing to magazines, calls to boutiques, factory visits, social media, looking after customers and usually chasing up deliveries!

British shoe designer Sarah Watkinson-Yull

Where are you based, how much of an inspiration is your city and what are your favourite cities around the world?

Based on the river in Battersea, London. London is a huge inspiration to the design of the shoes and the brand itself. It’s my favourite city in the world. Everywhere I go I am always so happy to be back.

Yull Shoes

Yull shoes are a feature of London life

Have you seen your industry change in the last few years?  Have you had to adapt?

Yes, independent shops are closing down and more and more people are buying online. We have adapted by investing time and efforts into social media and online advertising. However it also means that the world is a much smaller place and that we can sell all around the globe. We target sales across all continents and aren’t afraid to do so.

What’s the most rewarding part of your work?  What is your greatest accomplishment so far?

Getting to wear lovely shoes but also when other people are passionate about the brand and have actually heard of it. Means we must be doing something right!

British shoe designer Sarah Watkinson-Yull

What is next for you?  What are your goals for 2016? 

Launching of our new A/W collection for retail. It is our biggest collection yet and was definitely a step up for Yull. We have the very wearable Cumbria boots which were many many alterations in the making. They are our first ever long boots! My favourite though is the Chester high heeled booties, I’ve been wanting a pair for over a year now!

Yull Shoes

Yull Shoes photo shoot

Now for the quick fire round:

How would you describe yourself in three words?

Stubborn, driven and mad

Who would play you in a movie about your life?

Anna Faris probably

Who is your ultimate style icon?

Alexa Chung mixed with Kate Middleton

Making a Yull shoe

Bonus Question – if you didn’t do the job you do now – what would be your dream job and where?

Probably a lawyer, just as many hours but much better paid!

You can follow Sarah and Yull shoes on Instagram to see what else goes on in her life as a shoe designer.

Here’s the sneak peak you may have seen of my Yull wedding shoes on Instagram:

Yull bespoke shoes

We have plenty more to come in our LadyM Meets interview series; check out who you might have missed in our previous interviews right here and make sure you keep up to date with what I’m doing on Instagram.

LadyM Presents Instagram

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