It’s been a little over a year and a half since we last caught up with Amanda Williamson, owner of “Ennyluap” (pronounced in-a-lope) and since then, the Atlanta based designer has manage to not only meet her goals but even surpass a few. Showcasing her collection at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week and being announced as one of the five fashion lines to win Belk’s annual Southern Designer Showcase proves there’s no slowing down for this #GirlBoss.
First, can you share with our readers how it feels to have your amazing line in Belk?
I am happy that I can finally share my timelessly bold designs on a major label. I believe Belk’s customers are in for a sure treat. The style and quality of Ennyluap sets us apart from the rest.
What is it about your items that is going to attract people to Ennyluap versus everyone else they will see hanging on the racks?
I am featuring beautiful prints along with fun stripes, that are sure to catch anyone’s attention in a positive way. Our classic “extreme highwaist “ pants will be on display in an eye popping hot pink. Everything down to the design of our hangtags was precisely chosen, to make sure the full aesthetic that is Ennyluap will be on display. High quality at affordable prices.
For our readers who may not have heard of you yet please share with them how your started Ennyluap?
I began making majorette uniforms for my university band (North Carolina Central University). At the same time, I started developing some of my ready to wear looks just to see how they would turn out. I would go to a creative re-use store in Durham, called the Scrap Exchange, and pick up scraps of fabric from my living allowance my mom would give every month. When I graduated, I was given the opportunity to place some of my designs in a Raleigh boutique called The Art of Style, owned by Kendra Leonard. The designs sold really well and I began to pursue Ennyluap as a true company. I moved back home to Atlanta, and have been making strides with the company ever since.
Who inspires you as a designer?
My mother is my main inspiration. She has an eye for the classic things in life, but she has always been contemporary in her thought processes. My mother has always been a stickler for quality and that has truly been passed on to me.
As a designer, what trend are you in love with and what trend you are ready to see go away?
Ennyluap is a timeless company, so I don’t really follow trends with my designs. However I am in love with neoprene, but I am tired of the super spandex (Lycra) body-con dresses.
Does your roots in the Raleigh-Durham area have any impact on how you design your pieces?
My time spent in North Carolina has definitely had an impact on my design aesthetic. I truly found my sense of classic style while attending NCCU. Raleigh-Durham also had a quality to it that has influenced my designs.
What can we be on the lookout for in the next couple of months for Ennyluap?
Of course the collection being in Belk stores and Belk.com starting in March. For NC, the Belk stores will be Crabtree Valley Mall, South Park Mall and Hanes Mall.
How about over the next year?
Over the next year I plan to maintain my relationship with Belk, and expand to other national retailers. I want to ensure Ennyluap is available in all states.
What tips do you have for rising designers who want to follow your steps to build a successful brand? Stay true to your style, but always remember to keep the customer in mind. If you want to design for the masses, you have to have styles that are reasonable for everyday life.
Any plans for a men’s line of clothing?
I actually produce custom suits for men, I have been doing that since I established Ennyluap in 2012. A full collection will come, I recently launched the children’s line Ennyluap Kids (you can view it at www.ennyluap.com).