Get to Know: Audra Danielle Noyes
Step into a luxury retail store in cities like Pittsburgh, New Orleans or Dallas, and you may come across the creative endeavors of Audra Danielle Noyes, owner and creative director of the AUDRA women’s fashion brand. She also sells online and at her new AUDRA Atelier in Ladue, offering casual components, dresses and outerwear that draw many cues from the crisp tailoring of men’s apparel. The designer says her work reflects “a tension between structure and fluidity, masculinity and femininity.”
Noyes was part of the inaugural class at the Saint Louis Fashion Fund incubator three years ago, and her work has since been featured in a variety of publications. “I was raised and guided by strong women, and I want my work to inspire the same self-worth in others,” she says.
1. my fashion path While at the Savannah College of Art and Design, I got an internship working with Ralph Lauren children’s wear. Three years later, I was offered a mentorship with Zac Posen, which led me to meet André Leon Talley, who recommended me to train under Alber Elbaz at Lanvin. I developed my current skill set through my Parisian training with Lanvin and John Galliano.
2. how I came to the StL I moved my brand from New York City to St. Louis in 2017 to join the Fashion Fund class. After completing the program in 2018, I decided to grow my business here. It’s been an invaluable experience, opening up opportunities and expanding my creativity and business skills.
3. why I like doing business here I am pleased to build roots in St. Louis, where I have found clients, mentors, advisers and brand ambassadors who champion my company. The community has been warm and inviting, and the low overhead has allowed me to achieve business goals at an accelerated rate.
4. how I spend my free time You’ll often find me biking or walking in Forest Park, popping in to the zoo or visiting the Saint Louis Art Museum for inspiration.
5. where I shop and dine I love going to Bowood for succulents and dried flowers, estate sales for home treasures and Lusso for gifts. For local dining, it’s Brasserie, Bar Les Freres and Olive + Oak.
6. my ladue location Garment production takes place in New York City, but AUDRA Atelier is the headquarters for the brand’s business and design operations and its retail showroom, which is open on weekdays by appointment. Clients can shop, preview collections and bespoke designs, and hold intimate gatherings.
7. my design process I draw inspiration from my late father’s tailoring and infuse my creations with my own feminine voice. Each season, a collection begins with ideas from an emotional journey that I or my family have experienced, and that informs the cuts, fabrics and silhouettes of the new products.
8. favorite local products and vendors I go to Glow Candle Co. for subtle scents, Alice Blue Collective for bouquets, Lyudmila Expert Tailoring for personal and company alterations, and Cheree Berry Paper for pretty notecards.
9. I love traveling to … Paris! Je t’aime. It will always be my second home. Whenever I have a large chunk of time, I go there to see dear friends and enjoy all my favorite places.
10. how I spend a free weekend I love exploring because it provides instant relaxation and inspiration. Since travel has not been possible lately, I find myself enjoying the outdoors wherever I can—driving to a state park or biking in an area of Forest Park that I haven’t seen yet. I finish off the day cooking at home with my boyfriend. Lately, I have been perfecting my pad thaiand Bolognese