Terry Fox is a couture fashion and wedding dress designer, author and sewing expert with a successful career spanning over 45 years. Terry served a demanding apprenticeship with both Zandra Rhodes and the Emanuels (designers of Princess Diana’s wedding gown) and soon her unique style developed into the launch of her first collection of exquisite bridal and special occasion wear. It was an instant sell-out at prestigious outlets including Harrods. Terry’s enthusiastic approach to fashion led to a fantastic opportunity for her to head up the Liberty Sewing School, during which time she also presented the 18-part television series entitled Wear it Well.
An impressive client list, regular appearances on television, videos, books and magazine articles were soon to follow. Terry also took her seminars ‘The Inside Secrets of how to make the Outsides Work’ seminars to audiences all over the world, teaching specialist tips and advanced workroom techniques to thousands of students. Today Terry offers a range of intriguing workshops here in the UK for inspired sewers and enthusiastic creatives. She also regularly visits the USA as a guest tutor. Her sewing techniques are forever evolving as she works on her couture designs for her private clients, and whenever there is a spare moment Terry creates one-off pieces of fashion inspired art. Terry has won numerous awards during her career, including The Wedding Industry Award for Best British Bridal Designer.
1) What is your name and where do you live?
My name is Terry Fox and I have recently moved to Farnham in Surrey
2) What is your favourite soulventure?
My whole life is one soul venture it really is. I am barely the same person from month to month, year to year! I observe, learn and absorb everything around me.
I have had many epiphanies over the years, but the biggest one of all (or maybe because it’s the most recent) was in August 2017. I woke up one morning and thought this life isn’t for me. I had to leave everything behind me. My surroundings, the people I knew and most of all my belongings. I moved to another part of the country with nothing and knew nobody.
I was instantly liberated. I stopped being angry and disappointed, tired and frustrated. I needed a new beginning, a fresh me. It took me about a year to dig deep into my soul to decide what to do next. One week I would be about to buy a house next to the sea and retire. Then another, set up a new business, move nearer to London and create opportunities that I never had the confidence or wisdom to do before.
I opted for the latter!! And now I am the happiest I have been in a long time. There is no looking back.
3) What’s something that no-one would guess about you?
I am not not sure. I wear my heart on my sleeve. So I always think that everyone can see everything there is to know about me. My grandmother was Egyptian – maybe no-one would guess that. I think people from this part of the world think differently. Secretly I think I have a sixth sense about people and I am usually right!
4) What single thing would improve the quality of your life?
My life is just great right now but I suppose there is always room for improvement. I would have to say ‘balance’. My new business is young and will take time to build. With hard work comes success. The formula is simple – the difficulty is to balance this with enjoying life and sharing it with others.
That’s what I intend to do this time around; find the balance. I think it’s the first time in my life I have been ready for it.
5) If you could be doing anything, anywhere, right now, what would it be?
Travelling. I love to travel! Driving through a market on a crazy tuk-tuk is my idea of heaven.
I just love it when all your senses are hyperactive taking in everything around you. Any city, taking in any cultural experience. All smells, sounds and looks are so different.
I like to look people right in the eyes to see how life really is for them. The connection can be magical. Haha when I was younger this lead me on many adventures. I went to Greece on holiday once. I met a beautiful Greek family and moved in with them for a year. Another year I did the same in Italy. It does make me smile!
6) Of what are you most proud?
I think this must be an age thing. I think what I am most proud of is the things I have enabled others to achieve.
I have been mentoring a young lady who wants to become a bridalwear designer. We don’t get together very often, but when we do and I see her work I can see she has listened to every word I explained and made it a reality. That makes me proud on so many levels.
7) Who do you most admire and why?
I admire anyone who can rise above their challenges and make a life for themselves, however big or small. Life is tough and we all need help just to get by day to day. Most people have an infrastructure built around them, a community that helps them to survive. But once there is a hole in that structure, life can come crashing down so quickly.
This can be the case for all types of people. But because of my type of work, I meet a lot of women. Some are really struggling on the inside and I have nothing but total admiration for them. I find it hard enough, but I can’t imagine what it would be like to have children to look after too. As well as paying everyday costs, debts, mortgages, keeping jobs going or building businesses. Dealing with loss. Juggling happiness, sadness, expectations, realisations. Yes, I admire these people.
8) Best kiss of your life?
Ooooh I know the answer to that. But that would be telling!
9) What is a new skill you’d like to learn (and why?)
Oh without a doubt social media. It drives me insane. I am trying so hard and I know random little snippets, which then leads people to believe I know more than I do. I would like to understand it all, inside and out. Not only for business but because it is an everyday way of life.
I need to extend that to technology in general. You can’t do anything these days without it. That little screen owns you. It fools you into believing you are on equal terms. You give it everything you need to know. Then you forget it and it laughs in your face. I am going to outwit that little device one day. Just wait and see.
10) Woods, mountain, city or sea?
Sea. But each of these has their own time and place; their own beauty, their own wisdom and personal adventure. But if I had to choose one it would be the sea.
It is the only place where you are guaranteed the luxury of space. No interference. No one to rob it of its natural form and character. Not like other landscapes. Well not yet anyway.
I love the light reflecting off the sea. The natural habitat below. The quiet unfiltered airwaves. The place where time stands still.
11) If you could say one thing to lots of people, what would it be?
“In a world you can be anything, be kind”
I saw this on Facebook and moved it to my profile picture. I love these words. Be kind to people you know, to those who you don’t and to animals. And when you do it bounces right back at you!
12) What makes you happy?
Spending time with my friends. I have some amazing friends. A G&T or nice glass of wine, a beautiful lunch and just shooting the breeze.
13) What is your guiltiest pleasure?
Playing pass the ball or having a long chat and a cuddle with my cat during work hours. She talks back too. The good news is I have no idea what she’s saying. But when it all starts to make sense I will let you know!