Anna Chan left her high-flying City trader life to realise her passion for shoes. Yes, shoes. (You weren't expecting that now, were you.)
For the Manchester-born designer, who describes her shoes as having plenty of "attitude, colour and excitement", her real calling was creating fabulous, luxurious shoes that didn't require a banker's salary to buy. Banker-writer, Modern Girl, finds out more.
When did it all begin?
2010 - I was working as an Equities Sales Trader in Credit Suisse, London and had just returned from an inspirational holiday in Shanghai. I decide to take the leap and left my job to pursue my own shoe retail empire. The implications were giving up a good salary and lifestyle, and going into a world of uncertainties.
When was your first breakthrough?
This past Spring 2011, really, when I launched my online shoe store Justannashoes.com, and got my shoes on the shelves of a prestigious designer shoe outlet.
What is your typical day in your new career?
I maybe monitoring my supplier, overseeing a shipment, negotiating with new stockists, stepping up my marketing, and of course creating my new collection/s. Each day can be different, and I certainly have to maintain my go-getting attitude in this competitive market.
What celebrity would you like to see wearing your shoes?
My shoes are colourful, exciting and with ‘attitude’, so I would really to see someone like Lauren Conrad from The Hills partying in my shoes.
What are your three favourite shoes from your current collection?
Ashleigh - summer cream with gold buckles and so comfortable; Hayley - pale pink peep toe and so elegant; Angelina - electric blue with silver rivets and so retro; and Nikita - patent baby pink platforms and cheeky yet feminine. Whoops, that's four! But I love them all.
Now you are back in Manchester. What do you miss most about London?
My friends - I miss seeing them in person. I also miss yummy foods, like crabmeat ravioli at Ceconnis, cupcakes at Humming bird, frozen yogurt at Snog - they just haven’t reached Northern UK yet. I also miss the nightlife at Boujis and Amika!
Do you have any words of inspiration for our readers?
I do have a motto: if you want something, just make it happen!