CAPRICE MOVES FROM MODELLING TO INTERIORS

Actress, model and designer, Caprice Bourret is quite the entrepreneur. Today, the By Caprice business covers lingerie, swimwear, sleepwear and now, homewares. Caprice talks to The Resident about egos, money and why she has turned her attentions to interiors with By Caprice

WORDS Mark Kebble

Caprice Bourret, unsurprisingly, doesn’t recall meeting me some seven years ago when she was involved in a fringe theatre production alongside Barry from EastEnders (also known as Shaun Williamson). Then again, she sometimes doesn’t recall how much she has actually done during her career to date. ‘Acting was a sideline,’ she says, brushing that part of her life to one side. ‘I went to a school for acting, but my path was initially modelling. I did the West End… In fact, I did quite a lot of gigs in the West End!’

I don’t believe in luck – the harder you work, the luckier you get

Caprice, a Notting Hill resident for 10 years and counting now, has never been too far from the front pages of gossip rags and men’s mags. She came to England from Southern California simply ‘to make money’, she says in her own words. ‘It sounds crass,’ she admits, ‘but I wanted to have my own independence. My mum raised me saying to be happy is being independent and to never rely on anyone else. I don’t believe in luck – the harder you work, the luckier you get.’

Model and designer Caprice enters the homes market with a bang

Caprice launched her first home range at the end of 2015

Caprice has certainly worked hard, but it was a stroke of luck that kick-started her career. It was in 1996 that she stepped in for a pull out to present a gong at the National TV Awards and her stunning black lace dress left people gawping and hungry for more. ‘I dealt with it terribly,’ she says honestly on dealing with the fame that followed. ‘I believed in my own bullsh*t. Your ego really comes into play. It felt good and empowering, especially as a woman – at that time it was even more of a man’s world. My ego, though,’ she shakes her head, ‘was a disaster.’

From the outside in modelling always seems a risky business, so I ask Caprice what would be her advice for any would be models out there. ‘To finish your schooling is the most important thing,’ she answers without hesitation. ‘That will be your future. Modelling is a lot harder these days, it’s so competitive and being rejected is tough. Go to a reputable agency – there are a lot of con artists out there – and just be careful.’

During the heights of her modelling career she was ‘too caught up in the game’ to ever think ahead, but soon came a point in her life when Caprice realised that she had to open her eyes. ‘Reality set in when I hit 30,’ she says. ‘You have got to be realistic.’ It inspired her to launch her By Caprice business, starting with a lingerie range, but the refreshing honesty that has been prevalent throughout this interview continues. ‘The first collection was a massive bomb,’ she sighs. ‘Again my ego took over – I didn’t design it with commercial success in mind. I learnt a very big lesson.’

By Caprice offers a divers range of beddings, cushions and curtains

Riviera curtains (left) and Gold and Black curtains (right)

She clearly took that on board as, today, the By Caprice business covers lingerie, swimwear, sleepwear and, now, products for the home. ‘That launched for the first time back in November,’ she explains. ‘It’s going really well – we sold out the whole collection and a new range is dropping in February. I believe we found a niche in the market and I love it. I get excited about it when I wake up in the morning – the designing, the creativity, and I love talking about it. We have got products that are beautiful, made with lovely materials and are original designs.’

I get excited about the homes range: the designing and the creativity

The images on this page can do the talking and Caprice feels the designs will work in homes anywhere, which brings me back to her Notting Hill dwelling. ‘Sometimes the snappers get me when I am looking terrible,’ she laughs, ‘but generally it’s like one big happy family around here. I love walking down Portobello Road, just saying hi to all the shop owners. It’s like a little community, everyone knows everyone else.’ Unforgettable, in fact.

ByCaprice's bold, fresh bedding designs

Riviera bedding (left) and Butterfly Gold and Black bedding range (right)

See bycaprice.com to discover her latest homes range

Like what you see?

Sign up to The Resident newsletter for even more news, views and things to do in London, delivered direct to your inbox once a week