Annabelle Babcock knows hard work. With what started as a sewing project of dresses and skirts for friends and family turned into a local–and now national– success, nearly over night. But don’t let Annabelle’s laid back first impression fool you. This Belle is a design and business women force to be reckoned with. Certainly someone to take note of. After all, trading in the corporate world for a sewing kit isn’t generally the opening line to a success story, but in the case of Annabelle Babcock and the Laroque label, success was inevitable thanks to the drive and dedication from the South Carolina native.
Meet Annabelle. You–and your wardrobe– will be glad you did.
Name: Annabelle Laroque Babcock
Name of Biz: Laroque
SEC Team: South Carolina… but slowly learning to pull for Clemson… I married a Clemson fan.
Explain your role: I am the owner and designer here at LaRoque in Columbia, SC. I run a retail shop where we only sell LaRoque pieces. I also design two wholesale collections each year that are shown at the Atlanta market.
How long have you been in this role? 8 years.
Most challenging part of your biz?: The most challenging part of my career is managing a balance between my personal and professional life. Now that I am a wife and a mother I have to delegate more. Before I wore many hats and now I try to focus on design.
Most rewarding?: The most rewarding part of my career is when I see someone truly happy in a piece that I have created. There are so many talented designers in the world, when someone chooses my creation for a special event there is no greater feeling.
Business advice to other Belles? Have a clear goal. What do you want to create, do or help you audience with? If you have a clear vision and passion no one can stand in your way!
What’s next? Expanding the wholesale collection. We’ve also started a “Mini Collection.” (Shown here on Annabelle’s adorable daughter!)
Favorite part about being a Gamecock fan? The best part about being a gamecock fan is living and owning a business right here in the heart of Gamecock country. Being in Columbia during the fall is so much fun! Everyone is so excited to cheer on the gamecocks; the energy that football season brings is unmatched.
Favorite tailgate dish? Fried chicken from Lizards Thicket!
Game day drink of choice? Rum and coke.
What do you always have in your touch down purse? Always a camera. I have so much fun capturing all of the tailgate and garnet moments on a game day. The best part is when I spot another fan in one of my pieces!
What do you wear on game days? Can’t go wrong with a flow silk top–or our Ivy Top (below) and a pair of skinny jeans.
Heads or Tails: Heads
Coach Crush? My all time favorite coach is Ray Tanner. He was our baseball coach and led the Gamecocks to the national championship several times. He is now the athletic director here at USC. I really admire his loyalty to the Gamecock and South Carolina. (Pictured here)
Who wins it all this year? The Gamecocks of course! Well, or maybe Clemson!
Don’t miss out on seeing all the game day outfits—and much more–that Annabelle has created for Laroque and stores near you!