Meet the Founders Empowering Women Through Knickers: Nicola Piercy & Katie Lopes


(Image credit: Courtesy of Stripe & Stare)

Welcome to Second Life, a podcast spotlighting successful women who've made major career changes—and fearlessly mastered the pivot. Hosted by Hillary Kerr, co-founder and chief content officer at Who What Wear, each episode gives you a direct line to women who are game changers in their fields. Subscribe to Second Life on Apple PodcastsSpotify, or anywhere you get your podcasts to stay tuned.

Beloved undergarment brand Stripe & Stare started with one question: Why do sustainable knickers have to be boring? The answer is… they don't. Stripe & Stare co-founders Nicola Piercy and Katie Lopes set out on a mission to offer a solution by designing extremely comfortable knickers in playful patterns and vibrant color palettes. Founded in 2017, the entire line of knickers, undergarments, and loungewear is produced in ethical factories using sustainable beechwood fibers, and the brand has recently come out with a line (B-Edit) that's 100% biodegradable.

Leading a digital-first company based in London, Piercy and Lopes have grown the e-commerce platform into a burgeoning business by receiving five-star reviews on their site and by reaching customers worldwide on retailers such as Shopbop, Bloomingdale's, and Revolve—ultimately proving that customers around the world share their same dream of wearing incredibly chic, fun, and sustainable undergarments. 

Before Piercy and Lopes were building a knicker empire beloved by the masses, they both had quite winding first lives of their own. Piercy worked in marketing—on both the brand side and at an agency—before embarking on her first venture, an online platform that sold houses called PrivateHQ. When that ran its course, she went on to become a marketing director at a UK chain of cooking schools. Lopes spent a number of years in production at Channel 7 in Sydney, Australia, before returning to London to open a fashion boutique. That experience sparked her fascination with undergarment design and would spawn the idea that would lead both ladies to create an industry-shifting label of their own.

Listen to the latest episode of Second Life to hear how Piercy's and Lopes' past career lives led them to come together to build a brand that solved a problem for a lot of mindful consumers while remaining true to their playful spirit. Keep scrolling to shop some of our favorites from Stripe & Stare.

Freelance Editor