Interview with's Carmen Haid

July 8
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Following from my coverage on, I recently interviewed the Vintage Queen behind Atelier Mayer’s empire, Carmen Haid. Enjoy!

-Please tell Myfashdiary readers how Atelier-Mayer really started?
My grandmother, Madame Mayer, was an haute couture seamstress in the 1930s in Vienna, specialising in making evening gowns for the society ladies in Austria, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. I grew up spending summers in her atelier, attending fittings and fashion events. She was my real inspiration to pursue a career in fashion and was re-born as the racy Madame Mayer on the site. I have been collecting vintage ever since I can remember. I have several designer friends who continuously started to raid my private closet for vintage finds, which they borrowed, re-worked in their studio and ultimately ended up as best sellers in their new collections. I thought: Fantastic, that’s a business!

-Before Launching Atelier-Mayer, you were a PR living in London. What made you end your career as a PR and start a Vintage haven?
A combination of a number of things: After working for a over a decade in luxury fashion and large companies I felt I was ready to start my own thing. This coincided with having children and needing some more flexibility with my schedule. However, it maybe more flexible but certainly not less work!
-Judging by your vintage collection online and in your private boutique, everything seems handpicked and well edited. How do you pick an Atelier-Mayer piece?
Each piece is hand selected and needs to give me the “wow” factor. This could a combination of the quality, provenance, cut or craftsmanship. I search globally for interesting items on markets, auctions and from private collectors. The word is spreading and now many couture collectors and dealers contact me directly. 
-Who is the ideal Atelier-Mayer Woman?
An exceptional woman born with a natural sense of style, eccentric and beautiful. Her social life evolves about making the future happen. Through her intellect and wit, she charms her way through life, embodying true luxury on every level. Only the best for her, that’s for sure – and you can’t help but love her!

-What is your most treasured Vintage item?
My late grandmother’s private collection. 
-Let us in on a secret, who are the latest celebrities you’ve dressed?
 I am working constantly on the red carpet. At the moment it is Queen Rania, Nicole Kidman, Madonna and Dannii Minogue.
-Most of myfashdiary readers have a love for vintage, what advice would you give them whilst purchasing a Vintage item or clothing?
Vintage is very personal, follow your intuition. If you are not sure, don’t get it. 

-What’s next for Carmen Haid?
Lots in the pipeline! Pop up in New York in September, Big fashion show in Egypt in October. Watch the space.

What would you say is the greatest challenge in running an online Boutique? By Sasha Maqsood

Being aware of how global it is, so it is important to consider the different market needs, yet sticking to your identity.

Have you ever seen anything in your own store you said you to have & kept it for yourself? If so, what attracted you to it? By Front Row Mode

It happens all the time. Vintage is so personal, very often I do have detach myself emotionally from the piece until I am ready to sell it. But if I keep everything for myself I don’t have a business, plus I love to share. Nothing makes me happier than giving the piece a new home who appreciates it.