Suitcase Series: Sophie Doyle, CEO and Creative Director of Alf the Label
This week we caught up with Sophie Doyle, the woman behind the award-winning brand Alf the Label, to find out what she never travels without, her packing tips, and what her most memorable trip has been so far…
Sophie Doyle is the CEO and Creative Director of Alf the Label. She is also a wife, a mother of two.
Alf the Label was born out of a love for uncompromising style. Pregnant with her first child in 2015, Sophie searched for a bag that would represent her as a modern woman with her own sense of style with the added functionality for childcare.
She wanted a bag that would support her as a mother and work for her as a professional. She wanted classic lines and considered designs in leathers and textiles of the finest quality.
When she couldn’t find what she needed, she took matters into her own hands.
Sophie developed relationships with makers during her travels over the years, engaging them to bring the bespoke bags and clothing she had designed for herself prior to starting her family. She took the same approach for the bag that would transition her into motherhood.
Sophie designed exactly what she needed in a baby bag and worked closely with crafters to bring it to life. Unbeknownst to her at the time, this was the very first leather baby bag that would become a signature Alf the Label style.
As she navigated the early months of motherhood, her bag caught the attention of other mothers around her. It dawned on Sophie that the baby bag she could not find and made a reality was one that other new parents were searching for, too.
Alf the Label was launched at Sophie’s kitchen table in 2016. She named the label after her grandfather Alf, who worked as a furrier after the Second World War, cutting and sewing panels of leather and fur in a tailor’s shop (amongst other professions).
Five years in, the product range has grown, as has our vibrant community of parents and supporters, the team based in the headquarters in Perth, Australia and the brand’s extended team based in Sydney, Australia.
Sophie’s passion for craftsmanship is deeply rooted. Her focus on creating timeless, functional pieces in exceptional materials and attention to detail is unwavering.
What’s been your most memorable trip, and why?
What’s your favourite ever hotel?
Not really a hotel per se, but we stayed in a working windmill (Air B&B) on a trip to Milos in the Greek Islands once which was stunning.
Where or what is your escape?
If you could go anywhere tomorrow, it would be…
To visit my Father-in-Law who lives in Hawaii. He lives on the Big Island which is a fantastic place to visit if you’re going to Hawaii.
What’s your idea of a luxury wellness holiday?
A spa holiday in the Champagne region in France. Nothing like Champagne, cheese and a spa day to feel totally pampered!
My top bucket-list destination is…
Poland – my family originated from there and I haven’t managed to visit yet. Hopefully one day soon.
If you could sit next to anyone – dead or alive – on a long-haul flight, who would it be?
The Pilot! I was Cabin Crew for Emirates when I was 21 and there is nothing more amazing than sitting in the cockpit for take-off or landing!
What is your jet-lag recovery tip?
Get out into the air at sunrise and sunset and put your face toward the rising or setting sun. Apparently, it helps your circadian rhythm. Or so my EK crew leader told me once!
What is your suitcase stalwart?
My hand luggage go-to is always the Luxe Ari bag from my brand Alf the Label – it converts five ways, which makes it really versatile for travelling.
Alf the Label Luxe Ari
What is your number one packing tip?
Plan your outfits into a capsule so each piece can be worn with multiple outfits, this will help to reduce overpacking which so many of us are guilty of!
I never travel without…
A calming/grounding essential oil which helps me relax and sleep in the air. I have been using the Doterra Balance oil most recently.
In my beauty/toiletry bag I always bring…
Travel-sized shampoo and conditioner packed in one of the Alf wet bags so it doesn’t make a mess if it leaks in transit.
For more information visit www.alfthelabel.com.au