Smash + Tess are in the business of making women forget all those cotton patterned flannels and ratty sweatpants we all wear and would be mortified to be seen in. They want women to hop online to their Vancouver based luxury dreamwear online boutique. The vintage-inspired brand owned by the ambitious mother/daughter/best friend trio, Ashley and Teresa Freeborn, and Mercedes LaPorte, offers up a sophisticated ensemble of chiffon, crêpe, and modal. Inviting women to indulge in well deserved personal time where they can feel relaxed, beautiful, and confident even in the comfort of their homes.
Since launching their online boutique this April, Smash + Tess continue to grow. “Vancouver has been very supportive” says Ashley, and with the success of pop-ups, “we’ve been very fortunate and have found a great network of people.” And keeping in theme with sleep/loungewear, Mercedes recently piloted their first pajama party. “It was really fun. It gives an excuse for the women who need a reason to get together, and enjoy a glass of wine in the comfort of feminine dreamwear,” as they aptly call it.
Today, Ashley and Mercedes shares with us the mission and heart of Smash + Tess, the process of their launch success, and where they hope to see it years to come. This trio are a tight-knit team of women who support each other every step of the way, all while maintaining a kind and authentic disposition. Get your credit cards ready and head on over to their online boutique for your next Kimonette purchase–you can thank us later.
Tell us how you went about starting Smash + Tess. What made you decide to open up a dreamwear online boutique?
It all started two years ago while myself, Ashley was studying at Conde Nast School of Fashion and Design in London, UK. My mum, Teresa and I have always had a passion for pajamas, but we often struggled with finding sleepwear that were not only elegant, but were also playful and flirty. While searching for a source for an eCommerce, I pitched my concept to one of my senior lecturer’s who loved the idea. After much research, brainstorming, and gathering a team, Smash + Tess was born.
What are the biggest rewards and challenges from running your own company?
One of the biggest goals is to share with women. We want each woman to feel welcomed. Especially the busy woman. We want them to know that it’s okay to make time to enjoy their ‘me’ time. For them to feel fabulous even at home. It’s been rewarding for us to see that girl power vibe in the community. Every post, comment, share, and email makes what we do worth it. We have seen women of all ages who are wearing our dreamwear.
What is the mission of Smash + Tess?
To create dreamwear that allow women to relax and imagine a well deserved personal time in the comfort of your home.
Can you tell us a bit about the process of launching. After you had the idea, what was the first step to make it a reality?
It took a couple years in the making. We had a pop-up to celebrate the launch, which was really successful. We also recognized the importance of collaborations and social media interactions. It’s all about getting out in the community.
What tips can you offer in picking the perfect dreamwear outfit?
It all depends on your personality and what you’re doing in your daily routine. Whether you’re at the computer or just around the house, by the pool or the beach, consider these components to choosing the item that’s best for you. Depending on your aesthetics, go all out! Because you never know what you’ll be doing, you don’t want to regret it. Just keep reminding yourself that you deserve it.
How are you hoping to see Smash + Tess expand?
We have lots of plans in store. Such as mummy + me, and a men’s line. As well as bridal where the party each wears something that pops in the photos, all while having a keepsake. Smash + Tess is a lifestyle that we want to continue building on. Our desire is to eventually sell throughout North America and in LA. But for right now, we want to continue with the market we are currently in with the direct consumer.
If you are already lounging in your comfy wear, sure to share photos of you fave Smash + Tess look and use #meetsmashtess and you could become a #smashtessgirl!