Words: Meryl Cubley
You may remember that the luscious owner of Rude Magazine, Nicci, recently did a review of MEME’s lingerie.
This fantastic company sent myself and Nicci a beautiful Playful Promises ‘LOVE’ set each to review: a blood-red vintage stitch bra, panties and a 4-strap suspender belt. Swoon!
We decided it was time to get to know this company a little better. So I met the lovely CEO, Mark, and here’s what happened…
MEME was created to fill the gap for a state of the art, online store offering designer, sexy, affordable-luxury lingerie.
The target audience is the modern, professional woman. During focus groups with women in this target group, another gap in the market emerged. A strong interest was shown by the target audience on the new wave of designer sex toys and couples’ sex toys by brands like LELO. Yet one group after another stated no existing retailer met their expectations in terms of style, design and overall experience.
MEME was created with the vision of offering the modern, professional woman with a one-stop shop for independent, unique lingerie brands, and for the best selection of designer toys, all offered at the best possible prices.
Who and what is behind the creation story?
MEME was created by two friends and business partners, myself and Anu, whose previous backgrounds were in online and banking. MEME was set up in 2011 and www.memeshop.com was launched in early 2012.
Our philosophy has always been about being an accessible luxury e-tailer that sells unapologetically sexy lingerie and intimate lifestyle accessories to an audience of modern professional women.
Through time we’ve also included an important element for our customers: engagement through social media.
Our customers love sexy, elegant lingerie, and they also like Facebook and sharing their experiences and with their friends. They (and us too) believe those two areas can go hand in hand. Our Facebook page has over 10,000 fans who like to comment, participate and share their views on modern women, entertainment and lingerie.
Our customers share certain similarities. We appeal to the modern, professional woman, with an interest in aesthetics and design, and high social media usage.
We also have an increasing base of male customers who buy presents for their partners. MEME’s website has a Gift section in which all products are either ‘unique size’ or easy ‘S-M-L-XL’ sizing. Buying a present for their partners has never been easier for them!
What brands do you stock?
We like niche, independent brands. And we always are on the lookout for them. Like these two brands we’ve recently added to the site: Erica M, a new underground New York legwear designer who produces the most alluring tights. And Marlies Dekkers, the cult Dutch underwear designer favoured by singers and actresses.
Why have an advisory board?
MEME’s advisory board is made up of five people from different fields, including women in business, online retail, media and feminist academia.
The group acts as a sounding board to review and identify the latest trends and to put them in the context of women’s lives and MEME’s ethos: to make sure everything we offer is not only fun, stylish and practical, but also helps our customers to feel good about themselves!
If lingerie was a female, who would have the starring role?
It would have to be a piece by up-and-coming French brand Maison Close. Their unique, provocative designs took the last Salon International de la Lingerie in Paris completely by a storm last February. Their prices are great too!
Jerry Hall once said the real fountain of youth is to have a dirty mind. MEME just feels lingerie helps to pump that fountain.
MEME aims to be the UK online reference for unapologetically sexy, elegant lingerie, designer sex toys and accessories.
For us this means to continue to expand the MEME brand with unique, independent lingerie and accessories at the best price points. This also means we need to continue to engage with more modern, professional women, via facebook, exciting online magazines and fashion blogs such as Rude Magazine.
What are your thoughts on positive body image for women? We’re getting together with MEME – and some other great companies and organisations – to make positive body images for women in the media the NORM! Keep checking back for updates!