A Day In The Life Of A Fashion Designer

A Day In The Life Of A Fashion Designer - Pyne and Smith Clothiers

Since I started Pyne & Smith, it's been fascinating to me to see the type of ladies who have bought, worn and lived in their P&S dresses. From ballet dancers, to archaeologists, from NPR writers, to donut making girl bosses, I can't help but find this inspiration and interesting,  I think you might too.

Once a month, I'll be sharing a brief interview on daily life with my customers, what you do for your job, your daily life, and a snap in your Pyne & Smith dress. 

To get the ball rolling, here's me! (....yes, I literally just interviewed myself.)


I’m Joanna, I started dressmaking in 2013, instantly became obsessed with making dresses, and started my business, Pyne and Smith in 2014. I loved the idea of using completely natural fabrics, quality craftsmanship, and simple styles for dresses I could wear every day, walking the dog, or going to the beach, even out to dinner.

I grew up in England, in a beautiful and rural part of the countryside. I have a very creative mother, and a musical father, and had a magical childhood!  Making and creating has always been a necessary part of my life. I moved to California after meeting my husband while traveling over here. We met and fell in love instantly! We have been married for 17 years, and have 3 kids between us (two big kids and one little.)


I’m up by 7, making coffee and school lunches. If I can get up earlier, I love to make coffee and enjoy the peace before the house wakes up! After dropping my son at school, I come home, make peppermint tea and maybe toast, then walk the dogs. I love to walk by the water, especially the harbor - seeing people living their life on boats seems so interesting. It's like a little community.

Once I’m back home (I work from my studio) I update my orders list, answer emails, and go out to my studio to begin cutting out that weeks orders. Depending on what dresses I have in stock, I’ll always try to build up a bit of inventory, so customers don’t have to wait as long for their dress. Usually I’m cutting for 3-4 hours a day.  It’s been hard to manage the business when that part takes so long, so I’m working on getting help with the cutting, so I can develop other parts of the business. I try to post an Instagram snap most days, which has been a huge part of my growth as a small business, and it’s also a part that I really enjoy. I have a wonderful community of women that I can share ideas with, and love this unexpected part of small business life. 

Lunch is always on the go, I'm trying to take better care of what I put into my body, so avocado and ham or fruit, and the essential peppermint tea too (I'm crazy about it)  I leave to pick my son up mid afternoon, and try to have most of my work done by then so I can enjoy being with him for a little bit before the dinner shift starts! Sometimes we’ll go for a walk after school and he likes to climb trees. He’s 11 and is also pretty creative, so I like to keep and eye on how much screen time he has, and push him to create something with clay, or take apart old electrical household items, etc. 

I really enjoy cooking when I have the time and the ingredients! I’ve made this a priority lately. I love Jamie Oliver cook recipes - they are so easy, practical for families and healthy. I love playing some tunes with a glass of wine and cooking away. 

After dinner, we like to try and get out for a nighttime walk as a family, which everyone seems to love. My hubby and I get to catch up and talk about the day, he loves seeing the business grow and we bounce ideas off each other. 

Bedtime for me - the earlier the better! If I can get in bed by 9:30 and read for a while, bliss. I love a good mystery and love a good series. My favorite go to book is a Flavia de Luce book by Alan Bradley. I fall asleep thinking of dress styles and patterns, it’s my happy space.

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