A portrait of Fabienne Chapot

Want to learn more about female entrepreneurship and the journey of building the Fabienne Chapot brand? This interview, with founder and CEO Fabienne Chapot, is about taking risk, creativity in business and persistence.

"I have my own clothing and accessories brand, but you will not find me behind the sewing machine. I am mainly concerned with the business side of the company. People see designers as the creative heart of a brand. That is true, of course, but you need much more to get a company off the ground. Creativity is not only about the aesthetic, it is more than a beautiful dress. It's about brand experience, finding balance, marketing strategy, breaking new ground, and everything around it. I've always wanted to do my own thing. During my first job at an advertising agency, that urge only intensified. It was all too slow for me."

"During my vacations in Asia I came across so many beautiful clothes and things. Everything in the Netherlands was still grey and brown at the time, I missed the cheerfulness, that was really a gut feeling. Colours made me happy and they still do. I get my inspiration from everything I see. When I see someone with a jacket with a nice embroidery or pattern, I immediately get inspiration for a new bag. I believe that people love everything that contains love and attention, a nice boutique, and not a big chain."

"After a few months at the advertising agency, I quit my job. I borrowed 40,000 euros from my mother and together we went to Bali. We flew back home with a suitcase full of colourful samples. I started with the sale of bags and wallets, later shoes were added and only much later a clothing line."

"Now we are a team of forty people, but back then I did everything myself: from packing to taking pictures. It's continuously shifting, you can't sit back for a second, but I didn't want to. In my early days there was something in the air."

"I have overcome so many bumps to get where I am now. When I hear “no”, I make sure it becomes a “yes”, whether it is about a new item or a new supplier. For me that is just as important as using your creativity. In that sense, I believe that every successful entrepreneur is creative."

- Fabienne Chapot, Founder & CEO

Watch the video or click here to read the full story.

PS: The article is available in Dutch only.