Angie Adams, founder, of Question Everything explains the inspiration behind her popular designs
ABSOLUTELY MAMA: What inspired you to start a childrenswear brand?
ANGIE ADAMS: I’ve always loved clothes and fashion and back in the 80s, living in Manila, I’d buy fabric and go to the local tailor and have clothes made for myself.
I was a big Madonna fan and I loved her style so I would design and have my own clothes made in her style at the time. Things I couldn’t get in the shops.
When I had kids, I would have dresses made for them on trips back to Manila and when in London, I’d receive so many compliments on them and subsequently friends and family encouraged me to start my own children’s clothing business. Believe it or not, I have used my past experiences playing in a rock band [Angie played drums in a punk band, and has toured with Iggy Pop and the Foo Fighters] and working as a homeopath as an influence on the design of my clothing.
AM: How would you describe your personal style from day-to-day?
AA: Mornings are a bit of a dash. I normally wear jeans, a jumper and cowboy boots unless I’m heading out to meetings in which case I’ll wear a dress.
I love dresses and collect them. One of my favourite designers is Coco Fennel. She makes beautiful and quirky dresses inspired by the 50s, 60s and 70s. I love vintage dresses and cowboy boots. I’m always on the lookout for good found all over the world. I also love stars and tartan. Another brand I’ve been following and collecting since the 90s is a Japanese brand called Hysteric Glamour. They make great rock-n-roll T shirts. On my wish list is a pair of Miu Miu boots which are cowboy cut with cats on them. They sound a bit mad but they are very cool.
AM: What are your style inspirations for the brand?
AA: Childrenswear should definitely be fun! That’s what being a child is all about. I think it’s also important that the dresses are versatile and comfortable. I always try to include fun prints I know kids will like in my collections as well as classic prints. I love classic looks and obviously I always like to throw a bit of a subtle rock and roll feel into Question Everything’s collections. I feel that the looks can be interpreted and styled according to each child’s personality. I don’t want to dictate but rather leave it open to play with.
AM: What do your children like wearing?
AA: My kids are a bit older now so they have their own style and I don’t have as much input. My son likes Palace and my girls like Urban Outfitters and Top Shop. They also like mixing it up with a bit of vintage – and Dr. Martens are popular all round. When they were younger I was always looking around for beautiful dresses – smocked dresses too of course. I generally like classic looks but with a modern twist.
AM: What’s been the biggest challenge so far? Do you manage to find time for yourself between business and family commitments?
AA: The daily running of a company involves a lot of admin. It’s quite time-consuming so my assistant and I share the work between us to make sure there’s always time for the more fun creative side of the business which is what inspires me to keep working hard. There are never enough hours in the day when I’m feeling exhausted I like going for a massage. I also love yoga, which has been a big part of my life on and off, time allowing. It makes me feel peaceful and centred.
Additionally, good friends are priceless. A long chat with a friend and hearing an outside perspective on something always helps me when I’m feeling overwhelmed
AM: Do you think the world is coming around to working mums and the idea of flexible working?
Yes I think it’s more commonplace for mums to work these days and there are so many amazing female entrepreneurs that are mothers. It’s very inspiring to see but I do feel that although it’s more common it does not take the pressure o of still being a brilliant mum – perhaps sometimes it puts more pressure on.
It’s all about balance and never forgetting your priorities, in my opinion.
AM What’s the most fun thing about your job?
AA: I love designing the collections and have so much fun doing this. I also like to travel, so travelling to the Far East for production and to shows in the U.S and Europe is great!
Building the brand has been hard work – and continues to be so – but it’s rewarding. Every achievement makes me happy and makes it all worthwhile. It also gives me a big kick to see children I don’t know out and about in a Question Everything dress. That’s a great feeling.
AM: What’s next for the brand?
AA: So many plans! I never have enough time to fulfill all the ideas I have. I’d like to expand on our boyswear line and I have a Question Everything homeware project in the pipeline, as well as a possible small womenswear collection. We also have some really interesting collaborations in discussion so watch this space.