LA PETITE SALOPE
The best decision Nicola Helgesen ever made was to quit her job. The year was 2001 and eager for a new challenge Helgesen swapped a successful career in visual merchandising for the uncertain life of a fashion designer. It was a gamble which more than paid off.
Keen to create garments that were �accessible, flattering and fun� she produced a small sample collection of bustiers and made an appointment to see the buyers at Browns. The day she cycled to the iconic store, her backpack bulging with samples, was the same day she pedaled home clutching her first order. It was also the day La Petite Salope � or the little strumpet � was born and in less than a week the collection had completely sold out.
The two years that followed were full on. International orders for La Petite Salope flooded in and to keep up with demand Helgesen worked day and night - dying silks in an overworked washing machine, drying fabrics across every available surface of her flat and hand sewing garments as quickly as she could.
By 2004 production levels were such that Helgesen enlisted the services of Blow PR to promote her SS04 collection � star of which was the now famous �Prom Dress� whose in-built corsetry won column inches and earned Helgesen the BFC �New Generation� sponsorship that financed her London Fashion Week debut.
In the wake of that show orders once again came thick and fast � this time from over 150 international boutiques. Topping style barometers everywhere La Petite Salope attained must-have status to such a degree that even the normally genteel environment of Selfridges� changing rooms became the scene of fisticuffs as customers battled it out over the last remaining pieces.
Nine rollercoaster seasons later the award-winning brand has evolved from sassy head turner to a demure but no less sexy range of dresses, separates and tailoring perfect for both day and evening. To mark this more mature direction the label recently acquired the subtler La Petite S****** logo.
Despite these changes however the label – which is manufactured entirely in London – maintains its roots in the early LPS handwriting, albeit with a more nuanced sophistication. With each season novel silhouettes and fresh lines delight customers the likes of (Kate Moss, Helena Bonham Carter, Isabella Blow and Paris Hilton to name a few) whilst wooing a new generation of fans.
La Petite S***** features regularly in the pages of British Vogue, German Vogue, Harpers Bazaar, Harpers and Queen, Elle and Tatler
La Petite S***** is stocked in leading boutiques worldwide, including: Harrods, Koh Samui, Net-a-porter, Le Bon Marche, Gente, Villa Moda, Geo Moretti, Penelope, Jean Pierre Bua and Sotris.
AWARDS & ACCOLADES2004 New Generation sponsorship by Top shop
2005 The Prom dress voted “Dress of the Year” by Evening Standard.
2006 Awarded New Exporter of the Year from UK Fashion export sponsored by Fedex.