Drapers looks ahead to summer, and speaks to Alexandra Miro, founder and designer of the eponymous swim and resortwear brand.
Alexandra Miro launched her London-based swimwear brand in 2017, inspired by her desire to find the perfect one piece swimming costume. Using Miro’s background in lingerie design and retailing, the brand creates structured sculpting and feminine swimming costumes. Swimwear retails between £70 for a bikini bottom to £198 for a swimsuit, and is sold by stockists including Harvey Nichols and Selfridges in the UK. The brand declines to reveal wholesale prices.
Drapers speaks to Miro about focusing on fit and the importance of social media.
What is your background? What were you doing before you set up the business?
Before I set up Alexandra Miro I worked in various areas within the fashion sector. My most recent venture before AM was running an online luxury lingerie business. We sold many prestigious brands, such as La Perla and Stella McCartney.
When and why did you set up your business?
Alexandra Miro was launched 18 months ago. Initially, I wanted to create a swimwear brand that was high fashion yet flattering on the female form. My background in lingerie meant that I was fastidious in my attention to fit and form.
How would you describe the brand?
As a brand, we are very much about making women feel empowered and comfortable. Recently our vision has further evolved and we have created a resortwear line that sits alongside the swimwear to offer our customer a complete holiday look. The resortwear has very much set the tone for the direction of the brand: glamorous and high fashion yet still timeless and elegant.
Who is your target shopper?
Somebody who is not afraid to make a style statement. I would like to think she is an intelligent, independent, free-spirited woman who values design and individuality.
Where do you find your inspiration for your designs?
Art, architecture and fashion are all obvious points of reference. However, I am very much influenced by places and people. Many of the designs are quite retro yet interpreted in a modern, contemporary way.
How important is social media to the business?
Social media is vitally important to any creative industry. Instagram in particular is a very visual medium and it is a cheap and effective way to get your brand message out there. I like to inject my own personality into the account and I think this further helps customers identify with the brand.
What were some unexpected challenges you have faced since you started out?
Our business has grown very rapidly. We started as very much an ecommerce business, but now wholesale has become vitally important to grow the brand. Swimwear and resortwear are very saturated markets, so it’s important to keep a strong brand identity and a clear point of difference.
What have been some of the highlights of running your own brand?
Getting the brand stocked in Selfridges was my personal highlight. It is really what propelled the brand.
Where do you see the brand in five years time?
I hope we can expand into new territories – Asia is a really booming market. Obviously retail stores are something I would love to open.
How do you keep yourself motivated and creative?
I don’t find it hard to be creative – all around I find things that inspire.
Is there anyone in the industry that particularly inspires you?
I am inspired by Sarah Shotton, creative director of Agent Provocateur. I find her vision always fresh and sexy.
What is one piece of advice you would give your younger self?
Listen to advice yet be true to your vision.
Favourite clothing brand
Favourite place to shop
Last fashion purchase
Last book you read
An American Marriage by Tayari Jones
Last film you watched
On the shop floor at Versace
A professional nose – I love fragrance
What would we find you doing at the weekend?
Off on an Italian adventure