Anya Hindmarch: 'Fire yourself every day'

Handbag queen Anya Hindmarch and advertising head honcho Cilla Snowball join MT to celebrate this year's 35 Women Under 35.

by Elizabeth Anderson
Last Updated: 02 Mar 2016

The UK’s up and coming business women gathered in central London last night as MT toasted those who had made it onto our 35 Women Under 35 list 2012. Women ranging from lawyers, entrepreneurs, bankers and even a tunnelling engineer were brought together at the event, which was held at AMV.BBDO’s Marylebone HQ and attended by Group CEO and chairman Cilla Snowball.


As this year’s list had an international flavour, there was no one more fitting than handbag designer and export sensation Anya Hindmarch to share her tips to success. ‘Every night when you leave the office, fire yourself. When you go in the next day, imagine you’re stepping into the role brand-new,’ she said (continues below.)


Created with flickr slideshow.

Hindmarch started her luxury handbags business twenty years ago in her late teens after spending time in Italy and spotting a business opportunity in drawstring leather duffel bags. Her bags, which cost up to £1,500, are now stocked in 17 countries worldwide, and have been spotted on the shoulders of Emma Watson and the Duchess of Cambridge.

But the path hasn’t been easy. Hindmarch warned entrepreneurs to prepare for constant slog: ‘It’s a challenge to get started, it’s a challenge to get things made, it’s a fight to get orders and a fight to get paid.’

Hindmarch also touched on the key set-back for many entrepreneurs – getting finance. ‘Blag and borrow from everyone to get start-up capital. Ask friends, family and anyone else willing to help,’ she advised the women last night. ‘If you do decide to work with investors, make sure they are people you get along with. But I think too much money for a new start-up can be a dangerous thing.’

Cilla Snowball added that networking events are a great way for women to get inspiration and encouragement, and it’s why she supports the 35 under 35 network. And the 35ers agreed. ‘It’s brilliant to be here meeting other women from different backgrounds,’ Sophia Wetherell, international development director at M&C Saatchi, said. ‘It broadens your mind and it makes you see surprising similarities between different jobs.’

- MT is hosting its inaugural Inspiring Women conference in October 2012, featuring Baroness Denise Kingsmill, Henrietta Royle and Cilla Snowball as guest speakers. Click here for more information.

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