A young mother-of-two who couldn’t find glamorous lingerie to fit her 34H bust has set up her own Agent Provocateur-style brand to cater for curvy women.
Evangeline Poku, 24, from London set up A’zaira Intimates with no previous background in fashion or business while juggling caring for her two children Isaiah, four, and Ariella-Grace, 19 months.
Fed up of the ‘mature’ styles typically available in larger sizes, Evangeline set about creating a collection every bit as sexy as those offered by Coco De Mer, but available in cup sizes as large as H.
‘As a fuller busted woman myself, I found it difficult to find pieces I considered to be special and sexy and that appealed to me at a high luxury price point, as this is very limited in the UK,’ she said.
‘My push to start my brand came after I was unable to find special lingerie for the most important day of my life, my wedding.
Evangeline took matters into her own hands and created a luxury brand with sizes from 28-36 DD-H, costing from £157 for a bra and £73 for a thong.
Her price point puts her alongside luxury lingerie brands such as Coco De Mer and Agent Provocateur and in her first week of pre-orders, Evangeline sold £1,000 of bras, which will be dispatched at the end of September.
Her inspiration came from her own struggles to find non-matronly bras for women with bigger cup sizes.
‘When you are fuller busted you start to embrace the slightly mature styles that come with it,’ she explained.
‘Delicate pieces people consider to be sexy are so hard to find. I have always wanted a bra that I honestly could not get.
‘I worked alongside my very experienced designer and ensured we had an extensive amount of fittings and gradings to ensure it met demands.’
Evangeline dipped into her savings and received some help from her mother, as well as winning a Dragon’s Den Style competition.
‘I was fortunate to participate in my then university Bucks New University’s Dragons’ Den, which I joined last minute. I later won and gained a funding of £5,000 for my business.
‘The panel included the founder of Dreams Beds, Mike Clare. For an established and well-known business owner to hear my concept and be so compelled to invest in me, pushed me to make A’zaira Intimates become a success.’
But it certainly wasn’t an easy task as Evangeline was at home looking after her youngest child when she decided to start working on her brand.
‘It’s not easy to have two children full stop but it’s [even]more challenging when business is involved.
‘My son was able to attend nursery and during my daughter’s nap times I made sure to try and get the most major things out of the way. My children and family were always my driving force and kept me motivated.