A few weeks ago, I was scrolling through my Facebook newsfeed, and something caught my attention. It was a young girl modeling in what appeared to be a St Joseph Convent Grenville school uniform. I was in awe, this was an event in New York, and there was a school uniform from Grenada being part of the trend. I inquired as to who was the brainchild behind this, and I was told it was a Grenadian designer known as Fe Noel.
A few days later, I came across a video, again while scrolling through my Facebook newsfeed and it was of the designer Fe Noel. She was being featured on the Oprah Winfrey Network. I was in awe, and when a mutual friend offered to introduce me to her to tell her story. I jumped at the opportunity. In the interview, we spoke about how she got started, some of the obstacles she faced when starting her business as well as some of her biggest wins, such as working with both Oprah and Lebron James.
Tell me a little about who you are?
I go by the name of Fe Noel which is derived from my birth name Felisha Noel. As a fashion designer, I aspire to make life beautiful, which I’ve set out to do from a very young age. Living as a first generation, American in Brooklyn Newyork I discovered fashion at a very young age. I come from a family of entrepreneurs, and that has defined the person I am. I’m also the mother of Stone, my Two years old who is my greatest pride and joy. My hobbies include traveling, reading, eating (lol) and learning how to ride a horse professionally.
Tell me about your business?
I’m building a womenswear brand that encourages women to live their lives in style.
What were you doing before you started your business?
I’m ambitious so I started at a very young age, right out of high school I was ready to take over the world. I had a clothing boutique at 19, and before the boutique, I was trying to start a brand, and before that, I was working in my mom’s daycare business.
What inspired you to start your Business?
I come from a family of entrepreneurs so I knew I would follow in my mother’s footsteps. Thinking back I didn’t know it would be as a designer, but I knew I would be in the business of fashion.
What obstacles did you face in starting your business and how did you overcome them?
This question gets me every time. I have a long list of obstacles, but the three major ones are financing, resources, and mentorship. Obtaining these things is difficult. Yes with hard work anything is possible, but even then your hard work may still fall short. I’ve been able to continue to grow and build my business, but I haven’t overcome these obstacles yet.
What is your most significant Success to date and What Was it like being featured on OWN and Working with Lebron James?
My most significant success is being able to live my dream. I’ve always wanted my own business, and to be able to employ others and wake up and be my own boss is a huge accomplishment for me.
The OWN (Oprah Winfrey Network) interview was so special because it allowed me to tell a bit of my story. It was so surreal to see people be inspired by what I had to say. I live in my own world most of the time, so it felt good to be heard.
Working with Lebron and Nike has been a fantastic experience. I’m happy to be apart of the legacy Lebron wants to leave behind. He is a strong, motivated, giving individual who’s who’s determined to leave his mark on the world. That is greatness it was a pleasure to witness it.
What’s next for you and your business?
I plan to continue growing and expanding the brand. I plan to open a Fe Noel Lifestyle Boutique that will change the way women shop.
What is your best advice for young people looking to start a similar business or get into Fashion?
Start where you are with what you have. Don’t be afraid to fail, the faster you fail, the sooner you can determine what works and doesn’t work for you.
What is your favorite memory of Grenada?
My favorite memory is the adventures to the waterfall, drinking freshly made passion fruit juice from my grandmother’s restaurant and the way I feel when I’m there.
What, in your opinion, makes Grenada special?
The people and I still see it as a hidden star island that the world has yet to discover.