FROM BEGINNING TO BRAND W/ ANNA CORONEO
Do you feel a bit stunted in your full time job? Do the Monday blues get you down?Have you got a passion that you're yearning to pursue? Or are you simply just bored? As menial as it may seem, boredom can really eat away at you— at your sense of worth and your enthusiasm to get up in the morning. Personally, when I found myself constantly looking at the clock, daydreaming about the weekend, and, eventually, crying in the bathroom at the very thought of coming in the next day, I knew I needed a change. And well, hey, now I'm a full-time blogger.
However, taking that plunge wasn't easy and I was naturally riddled with copious what ifs and the like. My parents being parents weren't overly keen on me quitting my stable, decent-enough paying job and so instead I turned to the internet for some guidance but sadly, there wasn't a huge amount of inspiration to be easily found. I hope to change that with this interview series.
Over the past year, I've had the absolute pleasure to meet many inspirational, hard-working and dedicated entrepreneurs and I want to use my platform to showcase some of these people and their work in the hopes that if any of you are looking to chase your passion, you have some insiders knowledge and experience.
Kicking it off with... Anna Coroneo!
Anna distinguishes herself as an artist, as well as a designer, and often uses her artwork as inspiration for prints to use across various avenues of design, including fashion, interiors, stationary and accessories. She is based between New York and London and as you'll read below, is consistently inspired by her surroundings, which she infuses into her designs. Known for her use of bold colours and vivacity in her artwork, her work often references botanical and marine life.
I got the absolute pleasure of meeting Anna at her flagship store in Marylebone toward the end of last year and it was a real highlight. She radiates a real warmth, has a permanent big smile on her face and oozes personality. Not only that, but it's with those qualities that you can tell how passionate she is about her work which really shines through. Anna continues to design and create some truly beautiful pieces which are showcased and sold in exclusive department and online stores such as Harvey Nichols, Net-a-Porter and Neiman Marcus. Make sure you go and check out the Anna Coroneo website to peruse all of the collections - personally I'm a real sucker for the silk scarves; they're swoon worthy.
1. What was your first ever business idea and did it come to fruition?
From a young age, it has always been my dream to be a designer and to have my own business. I first started selling my designs at my University's Spring Fair and also at the Sunday markets at Bondi Beach, before selling to boutiques, department stores and opening my flagship boutique.
2. Do you have any unexpected sources of inspiration?
I grew up in Australia and have always enjoyed being outdoors amongst the natural world. My obsession with botanicals and marine life is endless. I am also inspired by the cities I live in now - London and New York - I like to walk a lot and absorb what I see in the streets. Inspiration can really come from anywhere. I love to travel and am inspired by different cultures, I also love to explore history and enjoy spending time in museums and galleries.
3. What has been your most satisfying moment in your career thus far?
I always get really excited when I see a stranger wearing one of my designs in the street!!
4. What would you tell your teenage self if you could go back in time?
Always trust your intuition and never let anyone rain on your parade!
5. Excluding yours, what business, organisation or entrepreneur do you admire the most?
I admire the brand of Emilio Pucci - the company and designs have stood the test of time.
6. What did you learn from the worst boss you ever had?
Patience. I am an optimistic person and I try to find the silver lining in every cloud. Luckily, I can laugh about some of the horrible experiences now.
7. When you're having a stressful day, what's your ultimate comfort food?
A vanilla cupcake, with pink icing from Primrose Bakery and a cup of French breakfast tea by Mariage Freres. I also love red wine, so after a stressful day I'll have a glass of red and talk about it all with my husband.
8. Is there anything you wish you had known before you pursued your passion?
I'm learning and adapting every day as the business evolves. I wish I had known more about the costs involved with legal matters such as trademarks and IP. I find that I am constantly juggling art and commerce.
9. When things become overwhelming, what do you do to unwind?
I love going for a walk through Regent's Park with my husband or jumping in the car and heading out of the city. I also love booking holidays!
10. Name one song that makes you feel super pumped and motivated.
I really enjoy listening to music - some of my favourite songs are: This Must Be The Place - Talking Heads, Beast of Burden - Rolling Stones, Gong Li - Chilli Peppers, Learning to Fly - Tom Petty and Sinnerman - Nina Simone.
11. Are there any missed opportunities that you wish you had leveraged?
I like to think that everything happens for a reason and that when one door closes, another opens.
12. If you could give one piece of advice to someone chasing their passion, what would it be?
Never give up. Ever. I think it's also better to be a slow burn than a one hit wonder. I think it's important to be patient and to focus on delivering quality and authentic uniqueness.
13. How would your perfect day end?
Going to sleep, with the excitement of looking forward to what's ahead the next day!
14. Have you had to make any sacrifices in your personal life in order to become a successful entrepreneur?
Living far away from my family is definitely something that has been harder as time has gone by. I'm very close to my family and it's hard being in London/NY and my family being in Sydney as the time zones are all over the place and the flight is very long.
15. If you could be remembered for one thing, what would it be?
Timeless designs that bring joy forever!
A massive, massive thank you to Anna for wanting to be involved in this series! Stay tuned for next months entrepreneur - hint: you might assume he has a Temper.