ConSept is like the exclusive, elusive club you hear whispers of whilst eavesdropping in on conversation. Like a lavish, gold-plated version of Colette or Dover Street Market, ConSept sells to the likes of Kylie Minogue, Kate Moss and Amal Clooney, often-time, pieces are only available on ConSept’s rare rails. Along with a stellar roster of Versace, Baccarat, St. Luis and Hermés, ConSept also prides itself on promoting up-and coming designers, providing them with a platform for discovery by the store’s highly covetable clientele. We had a quick chat with co-owners Goran Svilar and Ali Samli as they begin to expand their business on the King’s Road, prepare to celebrate ConSept’s first birthday, and change the fashion industry, day by day.
Some might see ConSept as an exclusive market where entry is often only available to the rich. What inspired you to launch one of the world’s most luxurious concept stores?
While there are certainly high-priced pieces, ConSept works to all salaries, with in-store pieces as low as £25, but equally as high as £50,000, along with as much accessibility as possible—what is not available on the shop floor we work to supply via private orders and our concierge service. Nevertheless, what differentiates us is not our prices but our stock—our wide variety caters to our varied levels of clientele. One of our goals is to ensure each customer leaves the store with a smile on their face.
Unlike most concept stores around the world, we also focus on the new, up-and-coming designers, with quality and vision just as expressive and skilled as the usual, famous and typically expensive brands we are trying to stray from. We obviously feature the expensive brands, the well-known labels, but we also give young designers a platform to find their consumers, and provide consumers with a market to find new designers.
Is ConSept your main venture in the fashion industry?
Along with store, we also run a concierge company, S2 Concierge. As ConSept presents our clients with immense choice, S2 concierge takes care of their every day needs and requests. We know where to find the rare Hermès Birkin when a client needs it tomorrow or a limited edition collection of watches they’ve eyed a friend wearing. We specialize in the exclusive, making the unattainable attainable for those willing to pay for it.
Aside from S2, we also have another company that deals with real estate and project developments, along with smaller subsidies like S2 drinks. As our clients relocate across the world, we take care of their move, finding the house, handling the renovations, making it their dream environment. Like ConSept, S2 Design & Property grew organically from our clients’ needs.
How would you describe your own style?
“I have so much French in me, so I’d like to think it transfers over to my every day style. I also love street-wear, so I guess I’d call it French chic combined with London cool.” – Goran Svilar
“Sports and exercise are a big part of my life, so I think my personal style reflects that passion. I love designer trainers and I like to combine them with a smart shirt or jacket with a hoodie or polo-style T-shirt – always fitted, practically made-to-measure.” – Ali Samli
What are the must-haves for men looking to shop at ConSept?
While we are both well-dressed men, we have to admit that the guys have been slightly neglected so far. We are introducing men’s lines this autumn and are hoping to present some collections in the summer, however for the time being men can take care of their women, their houses, or their bars. Our Imperial Collection Vodka range and Fabergé collection both top the list, along with our favorite Grand Brulot – a 20-year-old cognac distilled with coffee. Aside from womenswear and official collections, we also sell personalized fragrances in partnership with Welton and unisex T-shirts featuring Jessica Rabbit and Alexander McQueen with an iconic “God Save McQueen” slogan – we can’t keep those on the rails.
What inspired your in-house fashion china? How did the idea for such fashionable mugs and plates come about?
While I’d like to take credit for it myself, I must give all the credit to Ali. The concept was developed through Ali and our in-house illustrator. The collection is produced with fine bone China in Stoke on Trent, as we follow a “Made in Britain” philosophy. Nevertheless, both my own and Ali’s background significantly came from dealings with fine bone china and porcelain. We’ve witnessed first-hand the art of china-making, both in serious patterns and then fun, fashionable patterns like our own collection.
Do you have any favorite designers?
I have a wide collection of favorite designers, and I certainly wouldn’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. My tastes range from Ralph Lauren to Gucci, along with Alexander Wang, Rick Owens and Valentino, but I can also pair it with a Zara garment… just about everything is in my wardrobe. I must admit though that I am more of a brandiac… I think Ali might be more open-minded when it comes to fashion.
“I definitely have a soft spot for brands – I value their designs and the importance they often place on quality. At the same time though, I also love to wear new designers. Up and coming designers are often more unique, take more chances with accessories, silhouettes and so on. Nevertheless, I am very picky.” Ali Samli
We hear ConSept’s first anniversary is fast approaching. Any big plans?
It’s been a wonderful year. We always enjoy getting to know our clients, as well as thanking them for their immense love, care and support that has kept this company afloat. It’s also a great way to put our clients in touch with one another. For those who have to travel often or have just relocated to London, this gives them opportunity to meet interesting people, share experiences and meet people with similar tastes – all in all just widen their circle of friends. I imagine we will bring everyone together to celebrate our anniversary as well as each other.