A middle child born in Toronto, Canada to a Japanese mother Kazuyo who is a textile fine artist and her Canadian father Robert who is a lawyer. The family moved to Hong Kong, Japan and China throughout Zoe’s childhood. Zoe spent the majority of her teenage years and onwards in the UK and Europe.
Zoe graduated from Central St Martins College of Art London with a 1st Class Honor in Fashion Womenswear and Print. During her 5 years at St Martins Zoe took a year off to work full time at Alexander McQueen. Many of the materials for her final degree collection were sponsored by the McQueen studio. Zoe also worked at Jessica Ogden, Hussein Chalayan, and others during her time as a student at St Martins.
Zoe graduated from the Royal College of Art London MA Fashion Womenswear specialising in Footwear. Zoe went straight from the RCA to Vivienne Westwood where she spent 3 years designing footwear, bags and accessories for both the Italian and Japanese collections.
Zoe worked as a consultant for a variation of British designers such as, Betty Jackson, Erdem, Basso and Brooke, Toast, Te Casan and French Connection all the while gaining experience working with factories in Italy, Spain, India, and Istanbul.
Zoe launched Zoe Lee shoes FW12 in London along with business partner Elena Degl’Innocenti who had worked alongside Zoe for 4 years as the product developer for Toast UK.
Zoe moved to Paris and opened the first Zoe Lee shop in the Marais. (19 Rue du Parc Royal, Paris 75003)
Zoe became full time in Paris setting up her studio in the the 18th arrondissement of Paris.