Born into a creative family, Amy Smilovic grew up with a sketchpad and pencil in hand. Realizing her obsession for style, Amy began designing clothing and accessories to sell at local boutiques. After leaving her early career in New York City, Amy joined her husband in Hong Kong in 1997. That’s when she decided to use her full creative potential and pursue her dream of starting a fashion line.
“I’m crazy for prints and color in unexpected combinations. And I love luxury with an absolute ease about it – simple but utterly modern,” says Amy of the foundation on which Tibi was launched. The brand name comes from Amy’s fellow American fashion partner, Octavia Hyland, whose grandmother’s name was Tibi. Gaining inspiration from frequent travels to the Indonesian island of Java, the duo created unique prints in vivid colors. The can be seen in dresses, shoes, tops, tanks and the rest of the collection.
The first capsule collection Tibi released was sold to Lane Crawford and people living in Hong Kong. Little time passed before Amy received calls from stores in the United States asking to carry the collection. Starting out as just four easy styles in hand printed fabrics turned into a full collection. In 2000, Amy and her husband left Hong Kong and relocated Tibi to a location in SoHo in New York City.
SoHo is Amy’s ideal location because she needs to be surrounded by creative, inspiring people much like herself. Every person in the Tibi design studio and showroom share a love of fashion in a laid-back and easy work environment. Tibi holds their flagship store also in SoHo on Wooster Street and reflects their design studio. It’s also the inspiration for Tibi stores throughout Japan.
Tibi is sold worldwide through high-end online sites and in department stores like Neiman Marcus, Bloomingdale’s, Bergdorf Goodman and Saks Fifth Avenue. Celebrities who have been pictured in Tibi range from Olivia Palermo to Ashley Tisdale to Kourtney Kardashian and many more.