Interview with Alice Warner, founder of Beaujais.



Tara: Has lingerie design always been your dream?

Alice: Perhaps a bit of an unusually specific career to want to go into, but yes. I love how technical and challenging it is.


Tara: What inspired you to begin designing?

Alice: I just always wanted to do something creative, and loved sewing and working with fabrics, so I think it went from there.


Tara: Has anyone influenced your desire to design or any particular pieces?

Alice: I try to always make the design process a collaborative one, both with the team at Beaujais and our customers. It’s often a lot more fun that way, and helps to ensure the designs are on the right track.


Tara: Stretch satin silk features importantly in your beautiful lingerie. Why do you feel this is so special to work with?

Alice: I think silk feels so luxuriously smooth against the skin, that it instantly feels special and enhances the confidence of the wearer. Using stretch silk satin helps to give a great fit that smoothly follows the contours of the body.



Tara: How does French Eyelash Leavers Lace differ from other lace?

Alice: On a technical level it differs in terms of the machinery used – French Leavers lace is created on ancient looms, creating a really precious lace. I love the depth and intricacy of this lace in comparison with other laces, as well as the heritage behind it.


Tara: What inspired you to create lingerie for larger cup sizes?

Alice: I could never find lingerie in my size that not only was supportive, but that looked good – it was always a case of either/or. So many people I knew also seemed to have this problem that to specialise in large cup sizes seemed the right way forward, and so Beaujais was created.


Tara: How do you feel that Beaujais differs from other larger cup lingerie in lingerie industry?

Alice: I’d like to think we’re that bit sexier and that the quality of our materials set us apart. As a small independent brand, every piece is handmade in the UK, so there is this aspect to it too.


Tara: You have created such wonderful lingerie collections, do you have any particular favourites?

Alice: There’s a sheer lace set in our upcoming ss13 collection that stands out I think as a particular favourite – it looks so delicate yet dramatic simultaneously. Also our Sweet Nothings range – it continues to be really popular.


Tara: Do you have any lingerie advice for brides to be?

Alice: Don’t leave your lingerie buying as an afterthought – plan your lingerie to work with your dress to give you confidence and support on the big day. Invest in pieces that make you look at your best for your wedding night, but also consider what you might need for the honeymoon.


Tara: Do you have any good tips for a partner when buying lingerie for a loved one?

Alice: Think about the styles she tends to wear and what she would feel sexy and comfortable in, rather than just what you would like her to wear. Having said that, don’t be afraid to try something a bit different, and if you get stuck on sizing, raid her lingerie drawer to check size labels.



Tara: Your collections are truly “Made in England”.  Do you think that is becoming more and more important to people purchasing lingerie today?

Alice: I hope so. Each of our pieces is made with love and care by our small team of ladies and I’d like to think people are becoming more aware and interested in the labour behind the label.


Tara: All of your collections are Handmade-apart from the obvious amazing attention to detail that this allows. What do you see as other benefits of lingerie made by hand?

Alice: I love how much care and attention is put into every piece, and knowing exactly how and where and in what way it was made. So much hidden work goes into our pieces and sometimes techniques can only really be utilised in small-scale production – some processes just cannot be replicated in mass manufacture.


Tara: Do you feel the use of traditional lingerie manufacturing techniques are important when creating your beautiful collections?

Alice: For me really the key thing is utilising the fantastic heritage of lingerie manufacture that we have in this country. I love that we are able to make our pieces in the UK and help in a small way to keep this going, when it did look as if these skills were in danger of dying out.



Tara: Do you feel that music has any influence on your work?

Alice: Not directly, but I think you are always influenced by what is going on around you and current trends, whether in fashion, music or other areas.



Tara: When or where do you feel at your most creative?

Alice: At 3am, glass of wine in hand.. not too sure why but it always seems to be the case.. !


Tara: Where do you see Beaujais in 5 years time?

Alice: I’d like to see us established as the go-to brand for women who want larger cup lingerie that is that bit more special and luxurious.


Tara: If you could be transported anywhere in the world, where would this [be?]

Alice: Back to Australia, I just love it there, but it’s a little far away..



Tara: The colours that you use in your creations are so beautiful, did you  have a love of art growing up and do you like to wear beautiful colours yourself?

Alice: Thank you! I do love to wander round art galleries if I have a bit of time to myself, but wouldn’t claim to know that much about art, I just like what I like, and I suppose more often than not colour is the key to that. I think colour can really affect mood, or reflect it, so I usually choose colours to wear based on how I’m feeling.



Tara: Do you look up to anyone important in the world of lingerie design?

Alice: There were several lingerie designers who really helped in giving me advice and encouragement when setting up Beaujais, and I’m really grateful to them, they continue to inspire.



Tara: Do you have any fashion tips for us for next season?

Alice: Considering that it is spring/summer, there are some surprisingly dark, gothic overtones to fashion next season. These translate really well into lingerie though, and with the limited colour palette, many of these will become ‘instant classics’, to update your wardrobe with.