LACE International: Fashion Done Differently

Ashley-Victoria Smith tells CrowdInk all about starting her own fashion show production company and luxury lingerie done the right way.

Robert Mason, Ashley-Victoria Smith, Lukas Biebinger (left to right),,, crowd ink, crowdink
Robert Mason, Ashley-Victoria Smith, Lukas Biebinger (left to right)

CrowdInk had the chance to sit down (virtually) with Ashley-Victoria Smith, founder of the LACE International fashion show production company, to find out about luxury lingerie done the right way, entrepreneurship, and what LACE International is doing with breast cancer charity, Jill’s Wish.

CrowdInk: Tell us about your brand. How did you get started? What was your inspiration?

Ashley-Victoria Smith: LACE International is a fashion show production company located in Charlotte, NC USA. At the time I started the show, I was the marketing coordinator for a local lingerie store and wanted to give my client and her customers something different, which was to do a small lingerie fashion show in her store, something small no more than 50 people. However, in the course of planning it, my business partner at the time and I saw something bigger. We realized that no one was doing and/or showcasing lingerie shows in Charlotte, NC so we figured, “why not make this a larger production?”

We were inspired by the classic icon, Marylin Monroe. She was classy, elegant, and sexy at the same time without showing so much skin and that became our mission; lingerie wasn’t/isn’t suppose to be provocative or sexual but rather to empower the woman wearing it and that there is such thing as classy and elegant lingerie. We marketed our show as a theatrical storyline of Lady Lace who was the star of her Burlesque and Sir Luke who loved her and wanted to take her away from the Burlesque world, however, Lady Lace wanted to keep both. The fashion show played out their fate. 

CI:What makes LACE unique?

AVS: LACE is unique because we’re about women empowerment. We want to help educate women about luxury lingerie and that it’s OK to feel sexy in your own skin and that you buy lingerie for you and not him. Additionally, proceeds from our ticket sales goes towards breast cancer awareness charity, Jill’s Wish, and we have had a lingerie collection made specifically for women who’ve had mastectomy due to breast cancer showcased in our show in which breast cancer survivors walked the collection. 

CI: What’s your number 1 tip for aspiring entrepreneurs?

AVS: My #1 tip is follow your passion. People will support you, your dreams, and help with your goals if they see your passion for what you’re doing. 

CI: How do you like to spend your spare time?

AVS: My spare time is spent simply being with my family & friends. Life is short, so whatever time I can get to be around people I love, is very important to me. 

Check out her facebook page here. 

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I am 32 years old have a degree in History and Religion. I've been in the fashion industry since I was a kid. When I was 25 I started working for a modeling agency (the same one I was with when I was a kid) as their marketing director, that's when I knew what I wanted to do and that was to be a fashion show producer. After two years of being overworked and underpaid, I quit. I had no backup plan and soon found myself homeless. For three months I was living out of a suitcase and sleeping on my friends couches with a two-bedroom apartment in storage. Everyday I was applying for jobs and looking for a home. With the help from my parents, I was able to secure a beautiful townhome and really start to work on my dream.