Today we talk about creativity, women’s power, freedom and self expression. This amazing designer is extremely inspiring and her clothing line is SO WOW!
“My label is playful and not too serious which I guess derives from my personality. It’s about creating pieces that make you feel powerful and in control. I aim to blur the line between costume and fashion, because why should they be separate? Why do we have to wear serious clothes all the time?!? Keeping in touch with your inner child keeps us young, and clothing is a method of conveying that. Growing up is a trap, so why should we give into societies expectations of how we should grow up?
The power of the woman is something I hold important, and my business is inspired by women in business such a Sophie Amoruso (nastygal), who’s recent series resonated with me strongly. It just shows that you have to have real guts and not be afraid to be independent. I think something that I let myself hold me back by waiting for something to come to me when I know if I want something I have to go to it. I struggle with having to disappoint those around me now for not doing the expected get a job buy a house thing, and it is hard watching all my friends do just that while I am still at square one building something from nothing and not quite having much to show for it (YET!).
A lot of work goes into creating a garment, and even though you might explain to someone how many hours it took, it’s still hard for someone to really understand the stress and frustration involved. From having to drive to the other side of the city to pick up one type of material for one small aspect of a garment, to competing with fast fashion labels that can produce a similar garment for less than what it would cost in fabric in australia, let alone the labor involved in making the garment. I struggle with justifying the prices I put on my garments when one half knows it’s completely reasonable, but the other half puts myself in the customers shoes and questions would I rather pop over to h&m and buy it for cheaper despite it being a lower quality construction and fabric grade. There is such a big audience for locally made produce and food in Melbourne at the moment which is amazing and inspiring, where as locally made garments still have a long way to go because information about it’s origin isn’t as widely known I guess.
For me, success is self fulfillment, because without that we are nothing but a puppet in society’s show. If everyone went along with the ‘go to uni, get a job, live happily ever after’ regime, our world wouldn’t develop at the rate it’s going now – there are so many influential people in this world who weren’t born into being influential, they decided their opinion matters. I think it’s important to be honest and straight forward in business because life is too short. Sometimes you have to have a moment of selfishness for a long term of success…. I might screw up a few times, but that’s okay because you can’t get things right until you’ve got them wrong.”
What’s the concept of your latest collection? After having the privileged of doing the amazing set of stilt walkers for the melbourne cup racing series, i was overwhelmed with the response to the work and it was setting in stone the kind of work i want to create. My work is seasonless, and it’s something that is like something i can’t even imagine because I do most of my design draping fabric over the mannequin and playing around with crazy materials i find getting lost in bunnings. Things i design on paper is just the start of an idea… when i start playing around with materials is when my garments really come to life and they start dictating their own direction. So to be honest, my next collection is a complete mystery to both you and me because it is forever evolving while i develop it on the mannequin.
The latest collection I am working on is going to be a lot more wearable than my previous pieces. Previously i have created a lot of winter pieces, this collection will be a summer collection, inspired by my aussie winter spent abroad in the European sun – my exploration through the world has informed my work in a way I didn’t think it would before I left. I have seen and experienced things during my travels that certainly can’t be achieved through a computer screen. Walking through architecture and warm picturesque landscape will be a story told through my upcoming collection. I am not one for words, I like my clothing to speak for itself. I am a woman of action, not one of talk.
How do you choose your materials and how do you work with them? My work is to authenticate luxury clothing through using high quality materials from the fabrication right down to the thread used to sew each seam. I incorporate a lot of natural materials such as leather and cotton, because I want longevity in my garments.
What kind of atmospheres do you try to evoke through your design? My atmosphere is what I like to call a dark magic. It’s dark and mysterious, but it’s also lively and can be full of colour at times. My aesthetic developed during my honors year studying fashion design, where the whole collection was based on a study conducted on the cuckoo wasp. Working with the specimens and collaborating with the Melbourne museum entomologists allowed my collection to reach new depths, and I have something up my sleeve for the next one too.
I consider my garments to be timeless, because I think ‘trends’ are a load of wank because people are too busy worrying about what other people are doing than focusing on what they want from themselves. Each collection doesn’t necessarily have a season for me, each new collection just has new innovative ideas relevant to the want and needs of my customer.
What do you think about the fast fashion industry? I find there are two ends to the fast fashion industry. One being the mass produced side, bearing low artistic integrity through copying each other and slim to none manufacturing worker standards at big brands like h&m and Zara. The other end which grinds my gears is the façade of big brand names like Louis Vuitton or Chanel to sometimes take away the authenticity of the luxury labels themselves, by giving people the social need to have a chanel perfume or LV bag due to the association with the brand. I find it inauthentic to designers and it overshadows the high level of garments that are being produced from those brands by shifting the focus to something that was created for profit, not creative integrity.
What’s your next project? I am working on something big over the next year. There is a lot of preparation and work ahead of me, but it will be worth the wait. It is going to be nothing like I’ve done before. I spent 4 months travelling the world this year, and I have come home with a completely new outlook on my brand and where I want to take it. I have so many idea’s that I just don’t know which one to start with first. There are lots of things planned for the future and I just can’t wait to share them.