10 Questions for KHOEO Co Founder Skye Harrison
All Images: KHOEO
KHOEO are making sustainable stories aspirational. We ask Co Founder Skye Harrison 10 questions about creating a supportive and luxurious space for customers and brands.
When we found out that our friends at K+H Comms were working to make sustainable products available in one place, we couldn’t help but feel a kinship to our own ethos. Honesty and transparency are highly valued, but not always found when we look for places to shop. KHOEO is dedicated to doing their small bit, to raise awareness of sustainable brands and their stories. They are bringing luxurious (but accessible) shopping right out of Instagram and onto a dedicated e-commerce platform. Because sustainable fashion and lifestyle can be aspirational too.
We met Skye Harrison via a virtual Zoom party, over a G&T, of course. Her energy and enthusiasm for her work is contagious. KHOEO is her lockdown baby, one she is co-parenting with her best friend and long time business partner Charlie Boud. The two have blended their love of style, with their expertise and a need to tell authentic stories all into KHOEO. Together with influencer friends, they are creating lust worthy edits of brands with worthwhile values, and relatable stories.
The Vendeur: Can you tell us a bit about your background before you launched KHOEO?
Skye Harrison: I’ve been in PR for 15 years now and I can hand on heart say that I love my job. I still own K&H Comms, which I founded nearly a decade ago together with my best friend and business partner, Charlie [Boud]. We’ve always felt it was important to innovate. K&H started as a boutique fashion agency and we added a lifestyle and wholesale division shortly after. We launched KHOEO as part of the K&H Comms umbrella and we are so proud to have such a holistic offering under one roof.
TV: What was the driver behind creating KHOEO?
SH: KHOEO was a child of lockdown. We always had the desire to add another element to our 360- degree approach to communication by way of a retail platform. One which allows our clients and brands a platform to sell and shine. There are some incredible multi-brand ecommerce sites out there, but as a PR agency run business, we have the added benefit of letting contemporary and cult brands (that might not have the same awareness level as others) to have their voice heard and brand seen.
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TV: How do you go about choosing the brands to stock?
SH: We ensure that the brands we stock each have a story to tell. All of them stand behind an ethical approach within their business operations (whether beauty, fashion or lifestyle) whilst the majority subscribe to sustainable criteria which we are proud to promote (E.L.V. Denim and Riley Studio for example). A lot of the brands we work with are making an effort to use more sustainable materials and processes, such as SILKED London (100% biodegradable silk made here in London), Wires Glasses (each pair is 100% fully recyclable and hand crafted by local artisans) and Everae (who use a lot of Econyl, Tencel and organic silk in their collections).
TV: You partnered with Riley and charity:water on an exclusive tshirt for the launch of the website, how has this set the tone for KHOEO going forwards?
SH: Absolutely! This is something we really want to carry through the site. We not only wanted to be a site that sold beautiful and sustainable pieces, but we wanted to make a difference – even if it was in a small way. A portion of t-shirt sales went to the charity:water and it sold out in a few days! We have just launched an exclusive collaboration with T Balance – a beautiful rose quartz bracelet that says “Freedom’ on it, ready for the end of lockdown! (below right)
TV: Can you tell us more about charity:water and why you decided to work with them?
SH: For our launch we collaborated with Riley Studio on a limited edition, fully sustainable, recycled fabric tee with £5 from every sale going to KHOEO’s charity partner charity:water; a cause dedicated to providing clean and safe drinking water to communities in developing countries. We chose charity:water as our inaugural partner because we strongly believe that everyone deserves to have access to clean water. When we heard that over 785m people lack the basic access to clean and safe drinking water we just wanted to have a part in taking this number down in any way we can.
The other aspect is the team, who are amazing and so refreshing to work with! They are so open and collaborative to all of our ideas, we love working with them. They are supportive and are as passionate about what we are doing as to what they are doing. It’s a fully supportive collaboration.
TV: How have you been able to integrate influencers into the KHOEO experience while still keeping it authentic?
SH: The influencers that we work with are all friends of the brand and the agency. They are contacts we’ve worked with for years and built a really organic relationship with. I think this shows through in the content we’ve created together. The influencers and industry insiders that we feature on KHOEO (called the KHOLLECTIVE) are all real women who inspire us , who support other women and who and are passionate about what they do.
TV: How does KHOEO inspire customers to be more conscious in their shopping habits?
SH: Our curated edit aims to support conscious consumption and ethical shopping decisions. By offering a great selection of brands that are working towards sustainability on a website that is easy to shop, we hope that consumers will be encouraged and inspired to shop with us and support these brands who are making responsible choices. Whilst not all might be fully sustainable, they make efforts into becoming more acutely aware of the impact they are having on the fashion lifecycle. It starts with a mindset shift and that is how we choose our collaborators. Every step counts and if we can use KHOEO as a platform to help our brands’ reach any socio- economic milestones, then we are happy with that step, even if it seems like a baby one.
TV: How do you help your brands on their road to becoming more sustainable?
SH: As KHOEO functions as an e-concession we employ a drop ship model, which means brands are not producing extra stock for us as a stockist. Quite the opposite. We are here to help them sell what they have already produced to enrich the lives of our consumers and their brand fans with clever stock allocation. Some of our brands are also on a made -to-order model reducing their footprint and adhering to a no – waste strategy.
TV: What is your favourite part of building and running KHOEO?
SH: I love watching the team develop, and the agency expand its capabilities. It’s also been a personal growth journey for me as a business owner and am so proud of all we’ve achieved, especially during a time when many businesses were closing its doors – K&H have opened another.
TV: How do you hope the platform will grow and expand in the future?
SH: We’re constantly seeking out and speaking with new brands to feature on the site, and there are a few in particular we have our eyes on that would be the dream. I look forward to growing our brand offering and our product categories, including the expansion of our homeware and gifts selection.
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