For the love of cashmere

For the love of cashmere

In 2016, Elle Pugh and Yolande Ellis decided to take on the world of luxury knitwear. As longtime lovers of cashmere, the mother-daughter duo were in want of somewhere to purchase it year-round. After realising there wasn't a retail destination that met their needs, the pair decided to launch Elle + Riley Cashmere, a brand dedicated to purveying pieces of the coveted knitwear for every season. 

Co Founders Elle + Yo

In doing this, the Auckland-based duo was able to draw on their collective background in fashion and retail with Elle having worked in stores locally and in New York — she also completed a stint in luxury PR in London and Auckland — and Yolande’s former career anchored in styling for editorial and TV. They started with an online platform, and following its success, naturally opened a bricks and mortar store. 

Their first was on Auckland’s bustling Ponsonby Road in 2017, followed by a Christchurch boutique in 2018 and a Queenstown outpost earlier this year. While each space offers something slightly different, there is a common theme threaded throughout them all; that of a calm, light-filled space akin to being in someone’s home

Elle + Riley Cashmere - Queenstown

The retail experience for Elle + Riley is tantamount to the product itself with each serene interior creating a warm and relaxed atmosphere. Here, customers are able to browse the catalogue of sumptuous cashmere styles at their leisure. The brand caters to both men and women, with a legion of dedicated followers who embrace a sense of elegance, modernity and timelessness. For Elle and Yo, it has been incredibly important to embody this customer within Elle + Riley's overarching ethos, hence their detailed approach to customer service. 

Having recognised a bona fide appetite for cashmere in New Zealand, the duo has embarked on a journey to educate consumers of its many virtues with a humble goal to see people to wear cashmere every day of the year.