Amy Ramage

I’m the Founder, MD and Creative Director of Célibataire – a hybrid design studio that I set-up last year (in 2022).

The sole purpose of Célibataire is to craft transformational digital experiences that help to drive business growth. We have the privilege of working for some of the world’s most ambitious brands including Monica Vinader, Harrods, By Terry, JNcQUOI and Addison Lee.  

Over the past 18 years, I’ve worked in a variety of creative roles from graphic designer, to art director and design director. It has given me the ability to effectively combine strategic thinking with creativity to evolve big ideas into digital flagships that capture the hearts and minds of audiences. This hands-on experience, combined with my business and agency leadership, and strategy skills, gave me the tools I needed to successfully set-up Célibataire – and to amplify its reach through tech.   

I am an ambitious and creative agency leader with an inquisitive mind. But also, someone who is incredibly conscious of the way business is conducted. As well as being passionate about working with and empowering women-led brands and businesses.   

The foundation of Célibataire is a belief in the need to – and power of – operating ethically and sustainably for people and the planet. Together with my team of experts, we aspire to transcend the junction between high-end luxury ecommerce and traditionally staid sustainable experience design – without compromise. We call this ‘conscious luxury’.  

Did you ever sit down and plan your career?

I had a clear idea that I wanted to work in the creative industry – which is what was at the heart of my decision to read a Bachelor of Design in visual communications. I’ve always had high aspirations of what I would like to achieve, however, I am a firm believer in being flexible. The decisions you make at the start of your career do not need to be permanent – sometimes you need to let go of one path or plan, and truly live the life you desire. When it comes to your career, if you focus on what feels right, you’ll find out just how capable you are and how far you can go. 

What challenges have you faced in your career? 

Like many female entrepreneurs and business owners, one of the biggest challenges that I am facing head-on is imposter syndrome. When I set up Célibataire, I felt self-doubt and fear that the agency would not achieve what I knew it could. I regularly asked myself “will my creative vision work? Will others buy into this too?” With almost two decades of experience, I’m no amateur — I know what works, but there’s always that little voice in your ear seeding doubt.

What has been your biggest achievement?

Starting Célibataire was one of the most empowering things I’ve done and is my biggest achievement to date. In addition, building the phenomenal team I have at Célibataire – I am nothing without them and they make me extremely proud. 

What’s the major factor in achieving success?

Definitely having the courage not to play it safe. I firmly believe that being brave enough to ‘make friends with failure’ gave me the strength to set up Célibataire. Once I stopped fearing failure, everything became much easier.

How do you feel about mentoring? 

As an entrepreneur, one of the things that proves the most valuable in your journey is feeling like you’re not alone. It’s vital that you cultivate a support system and develop a network that gives you a safe space for you to ask for help/advice. I’m a strong believer in mentorship – being a mentor and a mentee – and the power of community. I’m passionate about working with and empowering brands and businesses, especially in my industry and those that are female-led and I pride myself in building long-lasting relationships with colleagues, clients, partners and peers. I’ll always be around to cheer them on and share in all the ups and downs along the way. 

How do we accelerate the pace of change for gender? 

I’d encourage people to speak out about the gender bias barriers that still exist – from the struggle to raise capital and the archaic idea that women are still second place in a man’s world, to the continued fight to prove our legitimacy. The power of using your voice cannot be underestimated. We must continue raising these issues wherever we can to create solutions to a history of very tough questions on how to be a woman in business.

What advice would you give to your younger self? 

Take each day as it comes and trust the process. 

What are you hoping to achieve in the future? 

Aside from business goals and aspirations for 2023, my focus will be on work/life balance. 2022 taught me that nothing is more important than mental and physical health. Without that, we have nothing.