The Cat Lab
For the sophisticated urban woman who values quality and design, The Cat Lab is a space where you can explore bold choices and expand your style quotient.
Send us your thoughts or say hello to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the Founder
Two days into her first job at a tech firm, Ren Bin Lee Dixon had an epiphany. She realized that her true passion lies in fashion. But it wasn’t until several years later when she finally had the courage to change her life completely and start from scratch. And it wouldn’t be the first time.
Ren Bin was born and raised in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Even as a small child, she had always loved making dramatic draped costumes using bedsheets and linens. As a teen, she would save up her monthly wages just to buy fashion magazines and pour through them over and over until the images were seared into her brain. When she was old enough to decide that she wanted to pursue a degree in design, her family was unable to support her dream due their financial limitations. Being a pragmatist, Ren Bin kept her chin up and completed a degree in communications at a local university. Throughout that time her interest and eye for fashion never once waned.
In 2005 Ren Bin made a leap of faith to follow her heart and her future husband to live in his hometown Copenhagen, Denmark. There she started a new life from scratch having nothing else but the love of her life and the determination to make the best of whatever she had.
It took several years of working at a tech firm in Copenhagen before Ren Bin decided it was finally time to pursue her dream. She resigned from her job and worked very hard to find out how she could enter the competitive fashion industry in Denmark. As a foreigner and newcomer, she knew nobody in the fashion business and had only a small network of friends. Still she pressed on and went on meetings, after meetings, after meetings, until finally she met someone, who kind of knew someone, who kind of knew someone, who helped her get her first unpaid job in the fashion industry. But it wasn’t long before Ren Bin’s hard working ethics and unique skill set landed her a full-time (paid!) job at the country’s premier online PR showroom as their Showroom Manager. There she worked closely with Scandinavia’s leading brands and designers, as well as stylists and press.
As fate would have it, Ren Bin’s husband was offered a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to work in Shanghai, China and so they moved, again, and was based there for over 2 years. Having gone through the motions before, Ren Bin ‘hit the ground running’, as her co-workers would say, and started working with a high-end designer boutique that carried American brands such as Proenza Schouler, Marchesa, Jason Wu, and many more.
After their stint in Shanghai, Ren Bin returned to Copenhagen as a market consultant for Danish fashion and lifestyle companies who are expanding in the Chinese market. One of the companies she worked closely with was Birger Christensen, the royal purveyor of fur for the Danish royal family and the premier shopping destination for luxury brands such as Celine, Prada, Valentino, and many more.
In 2015, Ren Bin’s husband was offered an attractive opportunity to work in the US and so, this time with two small kids in tow, the family moved once more to a new country, a new life. With two small kids in the equation, the family decided that US would be their home for the indefinite future. Swiftly, they settled down and Ren Bin was able to start planning her future in the US.
Gathering from her many years of experience in the fashion business and the vast network that she had amassed from around the world, Ren Bin knew she wanted to create a business that offers modern women fashion-forward pieces at the same high-end quality that designers offer – but at a more accessible price. Having grown up in a modest environment, Ren Bin knew that many women do admire high-end designs and luxury quality but are unable to justify the price tags that they usually come with. Using her network, Ren Bin started to build her collection by sourcing for small, independent designers and manufacturers from around the world who met her stringent criteria of producing bold, exciting designs using only high quality material. By streamlining the rest of her business processes and working with a few diligently selected suppliers, she was able to restrain her cost and ultimately, maintain a reasonable price for her collection.
Ren Bin is always quick to express her admiration for the feline grace and have used cat motives in her past fashion endeavors. So the idea of creating an online space for women to experiment and have fun with fashion and style gave birth to the idea of calling it The Cat Lab – Style Lab for the Cool Cat.