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Fashion Annah Business
How do you go about starting a business in the very fickle and overcrowded world of fashion? No itâ€™s not easy but yes it is certainly possible. The creative industries are possibly one of the hardest industries to succeed in as we are also incredibly reliant on so many others to do the job well to make and get our product to market. From the design to the production, the marketing and the selling it will all be about the way you lead and collaborate with others that will depict the outcomes that you will get. Unfortunately most creatives have limited business acumen and herein lies the first stumbling block. They are also often not prepared or donâ€™t see the necessity in up-skilling themselves, so they have to rely on others to fill the gaps. This can be not only costly but also challenging as finding others that are aligned, capable and understand your dream is very difficult. It will always be a lot better to up skill yourself from a business sense from the beginning. Boring I hear you say but this may be the one thing that is standing between your failure or success. Going forward as your business grows this business knowledge will also enable you to keep a very necessary eye on your bottom line.
If you do want to get into a fashion business there will always be opportunities as I do believe that the internet has made the pathway a little easier and certainly more cost effective in terms of getting your goods and brand speak out to market. So definitely look into this as the first pathway to introduce your clothing line. Regardless of whether you consider yourself to be a digital dummy or not, it is not negotiable to not up skill yourself technologically as we do so much of our research, customer promotion and engagement on the social media platforms. Our website is one of our strongest performing stores and I know that the statement - if you are not digital now you will not be relevant is VERY TRUE! Google is the new business card so make your business count in this space (I am extremely surprised people still proffer business cards when meeting as often the meet is initiated via email and phone so you have all the details you will need).
Here are three simple steps to take when endeavouring to start up your fashion business dream
1. Firstly I suggest that you ascertain that the clothes/ collection
that you are looking to design truly does have an end market. Have you really discovered a gap or are you just creating an extended wardrobe for yourself and your friends? Do you really think you can take something that has been done hundreds of times before and present it in a way that will re-engage a potential market and build you a sustainable business? Yes I know you possibly think there is a gap in the market but how well have you done your research
2. Always have your commercial hat on. Look at designing clothes
that will sell across a broad demographic. Your measure of success is not the number of celebrities that ask to wear your clothes, it is and should always be money in the bank and to achieve this you need to sell clothes not lend them (NB: we donâ€™t really have a celebrity culture in NZ and Australia).
Make sure that you know about the business of fashion. Remember that fashion is 80% about business and 20 % about the creative outcomes so take a small business course, or partner with someone that has this skill - Without this you are unlikely to succeed. And finally embrace failure! So many people never make a business start because they fear the what if and what others will think it and it all goes pear shaped. Whoever learnt to ski without falling over? There is no sigma in failure. In fact, quite the opposite. Failure is the foundation stone of success. Life and business are about risk so you will need to take them. Fail hard, fail often, try stuff. The brave may not live forever but the cautious have not lived at all - Richard Branson.
PLAY shine during Crystal Anniversary year of Iconic Perth Fashion Festival Having spent the majority of my 25 years in Perth, one of the most isolated cities in the world, I think it is fair to say there is no argument Fashion isn’t exactly the first thing that brings curious travelers to our sandy white shores. Rather our booming mining industry seems to dominate in bringing the misconception WA is full of ‘cashed up bogans’ when in fact this couldn’t be further from the truth. This year Perth Fashion Festival (PFF) team aimed to dispel this myth when they paired with Newmont and shot their 2013 ‘Uniquely WA’ campaign at Newmont’s Boddington goldmine. The end result striking 2013 campaign images featuring one of WA’s most
glamorous exports model Chrystal Copland of Chic model Management. In celebration of the fifteenth ‘Crystal Anniversary’, WA premier the Hon. Colin Barnett MLA had promised this year’s festival “To be the biggest yet with more industry involvement than ever before”. The festival, held the 11th-16th of September, Perth Fashion Festival delivered sell out shows months in advance. The incredible amount of diversity on display attracted plenty of big names to Perth across a range of creative industries. The ever gracious Festival Ambassador and Lord Major Lisa Scaffidi outlined the commitment to support the WA creative industries in her opening
address, “The festival, just like a stunning crystal, shows off amazing new facets and shimmers brightly in a myriad of colours on our city calendar across key venues”. This year I was fortunate enough to attend many of the PFF shows, which I found quite a humbling experience. Amid the fury of the excitement, hair and makeup artists’ backstage work to create the flawless looks while models dart frantically between rooms half-dressed. Designers show their more down to earth side, making jokes amongst last minute alterations, which in reality is months sometimes years of hard work glamorized into fifteen or so short minutes of catwalk.
Chrystal Copland Discovered whilst shopping with her mum at the age of 14, leggy blonde model Chrystal Copland grew up in the Perth suburb of Maylands. This years’ face of Perth Fashion Festival Copland featured in the uniquely ‘WA Campaign’. Walking more than 20 shows in her first season it’s no wonder she is known amongst some of the Industries best as the ‘chameleon’. You only have to look at her extensive and impressive list of work walking in fashion shows for Missoni, Marc Jacobs, Chanel, Anna Sui, Jonathan Saunders, Carven, Topshop Unique, Louis Vuitton ,Libertine andJeremy Scott to understand she’s one busy and sought after lass. Copland is one of four Australian models to make the cover of prestigious magazine Vogue Italia alongside another WA beauty Gemma Ward and other Aussie exports Miranda Kerr and Robyn Lawley.
Image by International Perth Born Photographer Simon Lekias as part of the ‘Uniquely WA’ Campaign for Perth Fashion Festival 2013
Empire Rose Established all the way back in 1998 Empire Rose is the brain-child of Perth based designer Kathryn Cizeika. Not only has Australian Cult label Empire Rose been around for an impressive 15 years now developing a following throughout Australia, Singapore and New Zealand the latest SS13 collection ‘The Moors’ is more dark and romantic than ever. Drawing inspiration from her Eastern-European heritage Cizeika’s ideas translate through her execution of form, combining historical shapes with a careful colour palette and luxurious fabrics.
Jaime Lee The Perth designer now based in Bali. Jaime Lee Major graduated from Central of Technology with an Advanced Diploma in fashion and textile design. Her first ‘Hypercolour’ Campaign in 2010, photographed by Thom Kerr, went to feature in magazines both nationally and internationally. Since then Jaime has kept busy designing a sold-out collaborative range with Sports Girl and dreamy dresses for celebs such as the one songstress Kimbra wore whilst excepting the Grammy alongside Gotye. The creative beauty wowed spectators at her world-class solo “Light Magic” show at the Perth Museum transforming the room in to a floral wonderland. More recently seven of her dresses were selected to feature in the final episode of America’s Next Top Model. Major spends the majority of her time now designing demi-couture gowns for private clients mainly in Australia, Dubai and Kuwait. Images by Stefan Gosatti
Pippa McManus Art and Fashion were always a large part of Perth-Based Fashion Illustrator Pippa McManus’ life. Having two creative parents, her father an engraver and her mother an artist, it’s no surprise at age fourteen her love for fashion and own creativity began to flourish after purchasing her first Vogue Magazine. Pippa’s unique artworks have seen her work alongside designers such as Aurelio Costerella, Mary Katrantzou and Dolce and Gabbana at fashion events in New York, London, Sydney and Paris. She also has commissioned works in fashionable Perth retail outlets Zara Bryson, Linneys pearls and Claremont Quarter.
When you have the opportunity to interview and shoot one of the driving forces behind Mercedes Benz Fashion Festival Brisbane (spanning the last 8 years), you quickly realise Liz Golding’s wealth of knowledge and experiences far surpass most in the industry. Currently working as the Director/Manager of Illuminate Management (Qld’s first Photographers Management Agency), Fashion Editor of U on Sunday Magazine (The Sunday Mail) and former Fashion Editor of Q Weekend Magazine (The Courier Mail) plus a long list of styling editorials, fashion parades and shoots since her illustrious modelling career. Overwhelming? Not for this focused and articulate woman of invention. Working and living as a creative is evident in her home surroundings with artworks, interior design taste and renovations, to the profound relationship she shares with her children.
FOM were fortunate to shoot and talk candidly to the eldest of the two daughters, Ella. Enter the stunning and intelligent Ella Golding, age 19, with the brazen calmness like Liz yet her own distinct character and opinion firmly forming as a model booker at Brisbane VIVIENS modelling agency. Both women understand fashion in a way that comes naturally to few, expressing their sometimes differing ideologies with examples of current trends versus classic tailoring. Both women predominantly buy from local and Australian fashion designers (of which they are either friends of or have worked alongside) as well as some of the more luxury end designers. Mixing high end fashion with local and High Street fashion seems to be a recurring theme in their household. Some of the shoes Liz wore in the shoot were hand painted by herself and a team of assistants for a particular fashion parade. Easton Pearson and Akira were some of Liz’s mentioned favourite Australian designers wearing some of their pieces throughout the shoot. Happy to say that shooting a well recognised stylist and her daughter was similar to watching an artist create their art. Invention is the mother of creation and this was obvious many times over in examples of altering clothing and accessories used on previous shoots, varied and every changing themes in past house renovations and soft furnishings as well as multiple forms of artworks scattered around the home. So as this new beginning unfolds for Liz and her business, Ella and her career who knows when and how these dynamic females will reach us. But for now, it’s all systems go as per usual until the next venture.
Amidst a family who submerge themselves in textiles and manufacturing services to numerous international and Australian fashion labels, Betty Tran also finds the time to design her self titled label. Inspired by strength, passion and love, embodied in the modern woman, Betty’s inspiration is to create timeless, functional, versatile and quality pieces that empower women to look and feel great about themselves. Betty’s attention to detail is applied to each silhouette in the collection. An appreciation for comfort is also reflected through her choice of natural fabrics such as silk. Betty was only five years old when she began to help her mum. She helped her doing the orders and basically grew up tailoring with her mother. At eight she never thought she’d be where she is at 25 years old; despite inheriting tailoring by blood, she never really wanted to work with clothes. When Betty left Vietnam seven years ago, she joined the Australian workforce to help pay bills. Betty had to learn English quickly and it was the ‘doer’ attitude she inherited from her mother that got them by, as she worked with the likes of Pierucci, Morrison and Aurelio Costarella. Betty’s mother has been her inspiration. “My mother is a doer. She taught herself how to sew and she did it with such dedication, passion and commitment and that’s how I grew up, seeing my mum like that,” said Betty. Betty watched her mother stay up till 4am to finish an order because she gave her word to a customer. Betty had inherited that exact same committed attitude from her mother. “I’ve watched her way of working my whole life and that was in my blood as well. She probably works 10 times harder than I do now, but it was a natural progression for me, to become a doer.”
After two years of studying PR at Edith Cowen University Betty realised she was moving in the wrong direction. She returned to what she knew, changing her studies to fashion and textiles. During the next three years of fashion and textiles uni she launched the label Betty Sugar â€“ a sleek clothing line for younger women, however, when the global financial crisis hit, Betty was close to giving up. Even though there were a number of stores closing down during the GFC, Betty refused to give up. Whatever money that she earned in retail, she had invested back into developing her new collection. What made everything easier for Betty was the joy that her work was also becoming her hobby, her dream, and the overwhelming feelings of accomplishment. Betty insists that her life story is sewn into the fabric of every piece and she believes that is essense people connect with in her pieces. She credits the challenges and opportunities sheâ€™s been given with pushing her to succeed. Betty Tran finally took a leap into the fashion industry with her own label, which was chosen to showcase in New York in Sept 2012.
Launched officially in March 2012, Betty Tran debuted her first S/S collection 12-13 in New York during New York Fashion Week, followed by a showcase of her S/S 13-14 La Muse collection at Mercedes Benz Australia Fashion Week as part of a New Generation show in 2013. A modern technique of dressing, the Betty Tran concept is based on a few simple classic pieces of clothing, where a handful of interchangeable items work together to create an entire wardrobe, transitioning smoothly from day to evening, weekday to weekend, season to season. “I’m designing for an international everyday woman who has a busy career and lifestyle. The Betty Tran woman is comfortable in her own skin and she looks effortless at all time”. Betty Tran opened her first flagship store in the heart of Perth City in September 2012, followed by the launch of her online store in conjunction with the opening of the second store in Claremont in August 2013. Betty came from not having very much to start her business with , has worked extremely hard striving for success and is only recently realising and absorbing the fact that she has made it to a position where she has succeeded. She has always been longing for an opportunity to become successful and express her ideas and innovation to the fullest and she couldn’t find that [in clothes] anywhere. Betty worked three jobs a day and found it hard to find something that suited her everyday needs. She felt everything was too dressy or too casual. “It’s my life story in that label. It’s a system of dressing women to be empowered in what they do. It doesn’t matter what job they’re doing.” Tran names the ultimate Betty Tran woman as Michelle Obama, but also finds inspiration closer to home in Perth’s Lord Mayor Lisa Scaffidi. “She’s an absolutely amazing leader,” Betty said. “Where I got inspired from is from a woman like her; a woman who is actually making change in a small community and then making a change on a bigger scale, to the world. That’s what she’s doing and that’s what I want to do, give women the strength to do that.” Celebrities Betty Tran has dressed also includes Spice Girl star turned X Factor Judge Mel B, Victoria Secret super model Jessica Hart, international model Nicole Trunfio, Australia Miss Universe Jesinta Campbell and most recently the powerful sister duo Serena and Venus Williams. Most recently, Betty has also dressed X Factor 2012 winner, Samantha Jade.
The 2013 Brisbane Designer Fashion Show red carpet event was held at the Old Museum Brisbane, with over 300 guests and 9 emerging and established designers showcasing their collections. Event Organiser and emerging designer, Niki Teljega, launched the event in 2012 to provide a platform for upcoming designers, hair stylists, makeup artists, photographers and models to gain exposure and experience in the fast paced fashion industry. 9 Designers signed onto the event including a few well know brands ...
Howard Showers With a well-established heritage of over 20 years, Howard Showers fuses classic pieces with current, on trend designs, and manages to dress women from all ages and backgrounds in both comfort and style. Utilising well know personalities such as the bright young actress Esther Anderson, media personality Charlotte Dawson, and Vogue ‘IT’ girl Lydia Willemenia as its most recent faces, the brand ensures it remains relevant, fresh and challenging to its customers. The Howard Showers design philosophy is focused on original prints and premium quality fabrics that keep evolving every season. Silks and delicate hand beading are used for all evening wear pieces which ensure that not only special occasion pieces, but every day casual wear is always effortlessly elegant and on trend.Cut, drape, subtle folds and tucks and the odd bunchy bow evoke the retro forties, however it is more about enabling the modern woman to advance, arming her with a wardrobe that is her portfolio, her investment. There is a sense of energy and presence, from the choice of fabrics to the colour palette, which is dynamic and commanding.
Emerging Brisbane designer creating beautiful red carpet garments. Niki is inspired by both modern and classical design and loves to create ‘must have’ pieces which make the client feel beautiful and unique. Her love is for haute couture garments and ‘one of’ pieces evoking both confidence and elegance.
JK Couture Designs specialises in fine Couture madeto-measure Wear. Designer Joanne Hasson is passionate about couture which shines through in every garment created by herself and her dedicated team. Joanne has lived and breathed design from a very young age from creating couture gowns for her dolls to formal gowns for her own formals and now creating unique and stunning designs for her clients.
KILLARI means “moonlight” in quecha, ancient Peruvian language. Did you know that Peru produces one of the world’s best quality silver? The founder of Killari made the discovery on an assignment studying her masters in Perth to launch a new product to the Australian market. Being a Peruvian with a background in fashion design, she wanted to bring a fashion product able to combine modern Australia with ancient Peru and that’s when KILLARI jewellery began.
Tania Kaftan Queen KQ pays homage to the natural beauty of femininity in all its forms. With an emphasis on lusciously tactile fabrics, ranging from pure silks and cottons to the finest blends, KQ garments are designed for absolute comfort while maintaining sensual silhouettes. Simple designs coupled with intricate, regal embellishments and beautiful clean colours results in a stunning, endless summer impression. These free-spirited pieces touch and caress, rather than cling and control. They shimmer to draw light and move to capture feminine contours.
LIPOA Threads L-I-P–O–A Stands for ‘Little piece of Africa’ Being a child of Africa, surrounded by bold culture, textures and vibrant colour, it is not hard for designer ‘Kristy Fair’ to be inspired. Striving to create unique striking pieces, mixing traditional African wear with first world fashion, Kristy Fair draws inspiration from her culture roots, colour, life, nature and people to create a vibrant and elegant collection that is feminine and modern. Kristy manages to combine classic cuts and silhouettes with the colour and designs from her African heritage that makes her designs so appealing to the modern woman.
THAT BIND US
As I tried to find the inspiration behind what I wanted to express from the Holy City of Jerusalem, who would think that a Saturday afternoon Sabbath meal with some friends in the cutest suburb of the German Colony would bring about the very message I was looking for. As we went around the table, the host asked a very profound question that left some of us thinking deeply about it for days. The question is one that is as old as the city itself and has the ability to leave us with a feeling that maybe we could be doing a lot more than we are. Legacy is one of those things that many of us may have not even thought of but something we all wish to leave behind. We strive each day at our careers somehow hoping, longing that we are in fact making a difference. For many of us, it is often the last thing on our minds as we navigate our busy lives trying to make sense of them, but that question is so deeply embedded in our souls that we find ourselves needing to find expression for it. For one of my friends his message was so simple, to open his home and offer his love to the homeless religious children. For my girlfriend, she wanted to be remembered for having touched the lives of the people around her. “It doesn’t have to be so great”, she added. But what she longed for was to be a wonderful mother, wife, daughter and homemaker and for it to find expression through her food, the nourishment and holiness of the meals she brings to the table on the holiest day of the week, the Sabbath, which is the day that brought all of us together to talk about the very topic. What went around the table was so inspirational that by the end of the
discussion I think we all felt like we could be doing more and that our small part, could in fact be a step to making a big difference.
to our life on all levels. We’ve all watched makeover shows to see what a difference it can make, but what we don’t often see are the inner changes that take place and When we think about legacies the great strength which is born or people who have changed the which can take a woman to being world, Gandhi, Mother Theresa, or able to conquer the world and leave Peace Pilgrim who walked more her mark. than 25,000 miles on a personal pilgrimage for peace. Their Women were active in Jerusalem message was simple and profound and left their mark, yet they often and continues to inspire people all remained in the shadows of the around the world. great historical stories of the city, their voices neither expressed nor We all know that thinking about it documented until now. is easy, taking action is not so. Do we really know that we are making A fashion show and history lesson some difference, is giving money to all rolled into one, the “Threads” a homeless person enough? Must exhibition takes us on a journey our action be so great in order to to experience contemporary feel that we are leaving a legacy fashion inspired by history and and that we will be remembered the ten remarkable women from here on Earth for having left it Jerusalem’s past. better than we found it. Throughout the exhibition there Living in Jerusalem, the Holiest are mannequins draped in haute City in the world has me thinking couture by some of Israel’s top deeply about many things, but fashion designers. The clothes are I recently realized that there modeled by 10 female celebrities is a thread that brings all of us including Actresses Dana Igvy, together, no matter where we Einat Erlich, Keren Mor, as well as are in the world. That thread is models Mirjam Roth and Maayan Fashion. Some see fashion as Keret, Author Zeruya Shalev superficial and materialistic but as and Israeli musician, Ester Rada Coco Chanel said it so beautifully for fashion photographer Tamar “Fashion is not something that Karavan in Jerusalem locations exists in dresses only. Fashion is in related to the lives of the historical the sky, in the street, fashion has figures. to do with ideas, the way we live, what is happening.” The ten leading Israeli women designers (Dina Glass, Raziella, Fashion has the ability to change Tamar Primak, Lihi Hod, Aluma, lives, to change our view of Liora Taragon, Alembika, Anya ourselves and the world around Fleet) were asked to look at the us. I recently read an article about women who were so instrumental to knowing when it’s time to change Jerusalem’s history, who were they, the way we look, when there what were their accomplishments comes a time in life when many and what type of dress the woman of us realise that our outside no would rock in if she was living with longer matches what’s inside and us today. These talented designers what we don’t realise or expect came up with some pretty unique that improving how we look can and very original designs that reverberate in profound ways and would have Donatella green with make a profound difference envy.
The line of inspirational women is remarkable, Queen Helene, the Queen of Adiabene, in the Parthian Empire is a woman who generously supported the hungry and needy. Hemda Ben Yehuda, who was a pioneer of Hebrew journalism and an activist for women’s rights, she also coined the Hebrew word for fashion, ofna, Rachel Yanait Ben-Zvi (a leading labor Zionist and wife of Israel’s second president), and Salome Alexandra (a Hasmonean queen who brought peace to the land). Were these women celebrated and rememberrd up until now? Does anyone today really know who they are? Does it make their accomplishments any less significant and did they leave a legacy and leave their mark?. These are all women who made enduring impressions on Jerusalem. “Their names are familiar from the street signs, but people don’t know them or their stories,” says Shapiro. “Threads” cloaks these women in splendor and breathes new life into them. We can see that there are threads from the past into the present, the threads of fashion bring us together to celebrate our sacredness, femininity and our history. A thread that runs from the ancient and holy Jerusalem to the runways of Milan where women like Frida Giannini take a stand through campaigns like Chimes for Change, uniting every girl, every woman, everywhere to take a stand and let our strong voices be heard. We know it doesn’t mean sacrificing God for Gucci but instead bringing them together knowing that our beauty is a gift from the one who created us and that leaving our legacy means shining it brightly into the world and rocking it in style.
How can we rethink the model?
The rebirth of the Australian Fashion Industry
Fashion isn’t dead. It’s suffering from a chronic case of poor PR, uninspired management and a stagnating business environment. However it is the perception that fashion is dead that hurts the industry more than any other contributing factor. Here’s the reality: the fashion industry is well and truly alive in Australia – it’s the modus operandi that needs careful consideration to bring it back to its former glory. Granted, there are some key components that need to work in tandem to create sustainable opportunities for talented Australian designers capable of competing on the world stage. Let’s start by celebrating the past and current successes of the industry and overthrow the pessimistic paradigm that manufacturing in the difficult and costly Australian legal scape is bad for business. The perception that the fashion industry is dead circulates through every floor of every department, organisation, government sector and through the minds of industry professionals. It’s become the latest buzz term, a plague on the “Promised Land”. With 40 000 individuals employed in the Australian Fashion manufacturing industry “we certainly owe it to them to change this perception” Richard Evans, CEO of Council of Textile and Fashion Industries of Australia (TFIA) highlights. As we dig a little deeper
Government initiatives to invest in fashion industry innovation and renewal lacks a sense of direction and purpose. A recent government initiative labelled “innovation and renewal” saw a number of iconic Australian Fashion retailers, manufacturing in Australia, receive substantial
to understand exactly who and where these 40 000 people are employed, we discover that the majority of these companies are operating between one to nineteen employees, manufacturing for small and medium sized businesses. These SMEs form the backbone of our economy, and are responsible for the majority of employment. Today manufacturing in Australia barely exists with skeleton manufacturing, as margins get tighter. There are a number of smaller, independent companies manufacturing in Australia producing limited runs that are just too small for the scales of global manufacturing companies. Standard Universal Group, Australia’s last standing textile manufacturer closed its doors recently, stating the ‘’nail in the coffin’’ was the decision by one of the company’s largest customers, teen brand SUPRÉ, to source the majority of its fabric from China. ‘’Mass manufacture of material in Australia is a dying trade”. At one stage in the game, the SUPRÉ manufacturing mix was 60% production offshore and 40% locally in Australia. It gave the company the flexibility to respond quickly to demand and deliver fast affordable fashion to retail stores within 10 days. The trend to offshore is a growing threat hurting our local talent and employment.
cash injections as part of the Federal Government $112.5 million program. Lisa Ho received $200 000 worth of government subsidies, Bettina Liano received $300 000 before going into voluntary administration, and Ojay $20 000 before it also tipped into administration. The question has to be asked whether this money could have been channelled better to stimulate innovation and renewal into holistically reinventing companies from the inside out. Beyond band-aid solutions and cash flow subsidies, with $112.5 million in our pockets, we are sure that we could renew an entire industry and in turn creating new opportunities within the sector. The industry is overregulated and struggling to thrive under strict labour policies- any wonder many businesses succumb to the pressures to move their operations offshore. We are making it too difficult to operate in Australia and remain competitive with foreign brands. Firms have to complete BAS quarterly, annual tax returns, provide superannuation allocations, meet local council reporting needs, work safe compliance, whilst meeting financial pressures and the multitude of other idiosyncrasies in running a business, including dealing with clients. How can business owners run their businesses while being tacked with so many different rules and regulations?
a number of companies that really understand the essence of service and creating an experience for consumers – a little retail entertainment. I love the feeling of buying a $7 packet of coffee and made to feel like I am buying a $3000 Chanel bag thanks to the service experience. Innovation isn’t just about quirky designs or new trends. International players are not only being innovative with fashion trends, but they are savvy with the technology they use on the back end of their business to track their inventory, so they know what’s selling and what’s not, and retaining that data on customers. Innovation needs to be examined, at a much deeper level, to ensure it pervades across every facet of the business. It’s about innovation of how we manage people, innovation of life balance into business; it’s about innovation of systems and technology. It’s also about our recruitment strategy – who we hire, how we hire, how we train and develop these people. Simon Scalzo, Leader for Retail at Audit, Tax and Advisory firm, BDO, echoes this sentiment and suggests a culture open to change drives innovation and innovation leads to smarter business strategies. By embracing change, and supporting innovation through technology, systems and online marketing, including social media, retailers can better compete in an ever-challenging operating environment. A crucial element in implementing or driving a change orientation is intrinsically linking the change culture to the firm’s overarching business strategy. This is a must, reveals Simon.
On the storefront, we are facing a two-sided assault thanks to a lack of retail buzz. Retailers dismiss innovation, repetitively relying on cloned products and marketing strategies yet expecting a different result while the world around them is changing rapidly. Bland products are flooding the market propped up by minimal and unmotivated team members on the shop floor with no incentive to Today embracing the benefits of technology both connect with customers unless they make their on the front and back end of the business is key to a way to the counter with an open wallet. There are successful outcome of the business strategy.
Simon Scalzo, Partner and National Head of Retail at BDO highlights that not only do businesses need to be in the social space, but also embracing smarter technology to draw customers into stores.
So with these problems laid out, what can we do to convert these challenges into opportunities? Lets explore some solutions:
Change the perception that the industry is dead. The media loves to focus on underperforming retailers. When confronted with doom and gloom, naturally the perception about the current state and future potential of the industry will be dark and distorted. Balanced reporting is essential to keep the public aware of whatâ€™s happening. Letâ€™s celebrate the WINS in the media and some of the incredible things that Australian companies are achieving.
2. Manufacturing in Australia must exist
with smaller, simpler runs aimed at niche markets. Global manufacturers should remain the realm of mass production.
Government grants and incentives require a reshuffle, with cash injected into the right companies with the right strategic plans in place to turnaround the sector.
4. Overregulation must be wound back.
Restructuring regulation will lend security and encourage entrepreneurial ideas and innovation. Government understanding and willingness to embrace changes to the present system is critical to the outcome of transforming this once vibrant industry to its former glory.
Bring back retail entertainment by creating brand experiences that arouse the five senses both online and offline and connect with consumers.
6. Embrace multi -channel retailing and
develop multiple touch points to entice and delight the consumer. Merging of retail
operations will enable customers to connect and purchase a product or service via a number of different channels. Customer needs must be a reference point to dictate the channels they are using depending on their current needs. They may window shop in-store, purchase via their mobile and have it sent to their home or as a gift to an overseas address. This is another vital component to hands free shopping.
innovation in the holistic sense. Innovation is not just about quirky prints or new cutting angle. Using smarter technology tools to draw customers into stores can be achieved through mobile GPS solutions and on the back end through merchandise planning and stock management software. Shop floor customer conversion technology looks at ways to optimise staff rostering and a store’s existing sales opportunity by ensuring store efficiencies are maximised at peak times and minimised at lower selling periods. Getting to the heart of the challenges that currently face the industry is up to each and every fashion business owner and manager in Australia. The time is overdue to take control of their own business situation and stop blaming external factors for why business isn’t doing well. As Mother Teresa said, “If each of us would only sweep their own doorstep, the whole world would be clean.” Working with many retailers faced with decreasing profit margins, Simon Scalzo, recognises that many under-performing companies tend to immediately cut costs; this is seldom the answer. He suggests sourcing an adviser to provide an independent assessment of the organisation’s challenges, including their financial and operational constraints. An adviser can then provide practical recommendations for improvement - restoring stability to the business and rebuilding its value. When an organisation is in difficulty, management often find it hard to be objective, therefore, as soon as issues are identified, Simon recommends to seek expert help to ensure an independent view. As an industry we need to get behind and support the Council of Textile and Fashion Industries Australia in their quest to lobby government, thereby bringing about positive change and sustainability. This is an ideal opportunity for government to incentivise the industry and award grants to support the shift back to localising and rebuilding the Australian Fashion industry. An intervention is required, we need to change the thinking and as Richard Evans explained we need ambassadors and advocates for the industry “we don’t want talk fest, we want people to get active.”It needs a change of thinking that naturally won’t happen over night.
THE DREAMTIME PROJECT
Thereâ€™s a reason why Bandi Bandi Swimwear is creating waves. Having done a soft launch at the Dreamtime show at Perth Fashion Week 2012 with Indigenous models sashaying down the runway, capturing lucrative attention from the fashion elitists, Bandi Bandi is ready to take on the world by storm. At the helm and the creative force behind Bandi Bandi is its founder, Joanne Pellew whose Indigenous heritage is Noongar and was raised in Broome, the Kimberley. With her deep spiritual connection to her Indigenous heritage and the cultural tapestry of the Kimberley, the inspiration for Bandi Bandi was born. Bandi Bandi was chosen as the name for Joanneâ€™s swim and resort wear label as she reflected on the times she would watch the Bandi Bandi snake gracefully swim by.
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This strikingly beautiful snake with bold black and white rings provided the exquisite signature print featured in the first collection. â€œI want to nurture and empower the Bandi Bandi girls to accomplish their dreams across the great cultural divides and strive to reach the pinnacle of the fashion world. Aboriginal heritage is important to them and the Bandi Bandi girls will represent IndigenousAustralia internationally which in turn will have a greater affect on their communities at large. This is what is important,â€? Joanne says. Joanne Pellew has aspirations to build her brand to diversify into perfume, accessories and skincare in the near future fusing traditional Indigenous methods with modern techniques to project native Australia in the international spotlight.
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With plans to showcase at Australian Fashion Week and Miami Swim Week in 2014, Joanne has been busy designing to expand her coveted collection featuring unique textiles and prints with an Indigenous Australian flair. â€œThe Australian lifestyle has a global reputation for our beaches and healthy living. With Bandi Bandi, I am adding another element, which is at the heart of who this country really is and that is our Indigenous culture. I want to showcase this to the world, to express it in a way it has never been done beforeâ€? says Joanne. With an undisputed passion and drive for providing opportunities for Indigenous people, Joanne will be seeking twenty Indigenous models who will become the labels Bandi Bandi Girls.
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WWW. THE DREAMTIME PROJECT .COM.AU
10 TIPS To e n s u r e t h a t y o u g e t t h e m o s t out of this summer season , we’ve c o m pi l e d a l i s t o f o u r t o p 1 0 t ip s f o r skincare and sun safet y as we head into our favour ite time of the year
6 .Love You Lips! We tend to forget that our
7 .Excel In Exfoliation: The key to great skin lies
Slop, Slap! We all know the saying, but this summer make it a fashionable choice by slipping on a stylish kaftan, slopping on a nourishing sunscreen and slapping on a fabulous hat… all ready for lounging by the poolside!
2. Be Sunscreen Savvy: Always wear an SPF
sunscreen – the higher the rating the better. Don’t underestimate our Aussie sun as you can still get burnt even on a cloudy day. For a great cover, we love the 50 SPF Sunscreen from Ultraceticals.
Up! With summer temperatures reaching into the 30 • C it’s important to keep your brain and body hydrated – it will keep you happy and healthy too. We love Fiji Water or for something totally tropical try fresh coconut juice.
Green: What can we say? Good green foods make the world go round… and keep our bodies vibrant. For a morning zing, try a green juice with spinach, kale, celery, apple, mint, lemon and ginger.
Right: Nuts are a great source of energy on the go and keep the skin, nails and hair healthy thanks to their high levels of omega-3 fatty acids. Keep a goody bag of macadamia nuts, almonds, walnuts and cashews on hand to keep the munchies at bay.
lips can get sun burned just as easily as our skin, so be sure to choose a hydrating SPF lip balm to keep your smile shining all summer long.
in your commitment to exfoliation. It removes any dead skin cells and helps to balance your skin’s natural pH level, encouraging a healthy glow.
8 .Hydrate You Skin: Just as we need to keep
hydrated on the inside, so too does the need to keep up the moisture levels on the outside. After exfoliation, indulge in your favourite moisturiser and massage it onto the skin from top to toes.
9 .Up The Antioxidants: Summer berries are
a delight and have the added benefit of being a great source of antioxidants. Add them to a fruit salad, whip up a smoothie or simply enjoy on their own.
Fake: A beautiful tan is the ultimate summer accessory, but you don’t need to put your skin through hours of damaging sun baking to get a golden glow. The secret to looking the part this summer is a healthy natural glow. We recommend using a tanning application that will compliment your skin tone, and of course my favourite is all Australian product,
Spring Summer 2014 Spotlight
LONDON FASHION WEEK
TODD LYNN Impeccable Tailoring Known for his signature androgynous style and bespoke-cut garments, Todd Lynn’s SS14 collection focuses on balancing both masculinity and femininity in one runway with tailoring being a significant element. Re introducing the masculinity -femininity concept, Spring/Summer 2014 sees backless garments, tuxedo shapes, tailored blazers, and easy-
PING HE Monochromatic and Femininity London’s Spring/Summer 2014 highlights a staple monochrome palette featuring structured yet feminine silhouettes. Think a combination of delicate and loose fitting dresses with leather and peplum detailing. With the use of layering, pleating and panelling, this trend will certainly focus on simple and clean lines whilst celebrating fun and
SIMONE ROCHA Attention to detail Inspired by the west coast of Ireland, Simone Rocha’s collection resembled wet rock blacks, mossy greens and cloudy whites. There is an immaculate attention to detail in the silhouette and shape of garments with patent cotton, heavy silks, hand crochet cotton and embroidered plastic. It simply all comes down to enhancing the physique by way of detailing through
Todd Lynn Continued
Ping He Continued
Simone Rocha Continued
to-wear stripes and silk. Fitted jackets and tailored trousers are an obvious must in every woman’s wardrobe.
femininity. In particular, Ping He’s impressive show featured dark lips on a ghastly barely-therefoundation base with beehive hair to complete the aesthetic. Hair was finely combed back and high above the head to perhaps symbolise empowerment and independence whilst creating the perfect juxtaposition.
the cut, proportions in order to fit the female frame.
Of course, keeping it minimalistic were also key in this collection keeping a majority of his collections black without going overthe-top with black-lace.
This collection was sexier than her last, so expect to see cocoon-shaped coats, pearl trims with accents of green leathers.
Of course, this trend is incredibly wearable and can be easily achieved either for a day or night outing.
‘London Fashion Week Street Style’ Fashion Week was in full swing in London with many fashion-forward Londoners heading to Somerset House to view the latest shows. The streets truly become a runway in its own right with a vibrant array of outfits from the sophisticated chic to the completely outrageous. As Fashion Observer Magazine makes its debut at London Fashion Week this Spring/Summer, we hit the London streets for some inspiration.
model spotlight 2013 showcased a diverse fraternity of models,
experienced and new, taking their prowess to the runway. This model spotlight shares many of the fun and lighter moments back stage as each model keeps their nerves in check and prepare to enter the runway.
A Limbo A divine sanction, a shallow prospect. Living for death, seeking a purpose. A reason, a meaning. A knowing that never comes.
The Lustful A whirlwind of plastic love, A storm of carnal eternity. Throwing yourself around, All in the name of a thrill A sense of control, a whisper of addiction. A satisfaction that is never met.
The Gluttons A life of needing, An existence built for the reaping. Overindulging, Yearning for the material life. A lack of discipline, an invisible will. An empty pit of Acid.
The Greedy Pushing through life, Bodies made of dust, Taking, manipulating, evaporating. Assuming ownership, thrusting through reason. A deal never dealt fairly.
The Wrathful Onyx Eyes, Full of hate, imploded with aggression. Damage, rampage, confrontation. An ocean tainted red by an unstable mind, And a need to destruct.
Romancing Melbourne The timeless elegance and romantic allure of the silk textile and innovative fashion collection by Studio 941 are revealed in this photo shoot taken by Cliq Photography. Set in the Melbourne CBD, the city is drunk with the seduction of these silk fluid scarves, shawls and sarongs worn as elegant dresses which are perfect for this spring and summer.
The Allure of Victorian
The intricate and abstract hand-painted and printed designs are derived from the artistic expressionism of the Melbourne-based independent designer label. Fashion stylist, Daniel Adi, and assistant stylist, Ida Suod, work together by combining fashion and photography to create a unique experience of old romantic notions entwined with the modern day familiarity of the city streets. Sally McBride from Scene Model accentuates the luxurious silk designs with her sensual poses against the backdrop of Melbourneâ€™s concrete jungle. Hair by Hiroko Ka and make-up by Shula Keyte, aimed to set out the inner wild passion of a classic beauty with teased untamed hair and deep seductive red lips . . .
a TOUCH OF
Last month with my team in Bangkok, we were invited to experience the most exciting event taking place in the fashion industry to date. I have never seen a competition of this format and it is fresh and exciting at the same time.
We arrived at Prachpriew studio in Ekkamai not knowing what to expect when we saw that familiar font of Harper’s Bazaar carefully laid out on the pathway. We were immediately charged and super excited, me especially. Duang Wannaporn Poshyanonda, or as most people refer to her as “P Duang Red Lips”, stepped up to reign the Editor in Chief position at Harper’s Bazaar Thailand, where she has jazzed up the rag in a big way. I recall the nation wide street style competitions as well as meet and greet with the photographer, FACE HUNTER, and now this. After her usual fashion week meet ups with the other editors in Asia, she teamed up with Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia to create this competition. Duang is also the promoter of Instituto Marangoni, a well renowned fashioninstitution, so you can imaging, everything just falls into place for the Harper’s Bazaar Asia New Generation Fashion Designer Award. This contest is a stage for young designers in each country to put their best foot forward to design a capsule collection for the panellist who are the ultimate fashion experts in the industry from each country to find the final 2 to compete in the finale at Bangkok International Fashion Week in November. The criterion is not as easy as you may think, in this day and age, you cannot survive on creativity alone in the fashion industry. The designers also need to present their business plan consisting of production, pricing, marketing plan and timeline. Eek! Don’t think it’s so easy now hey? Competition in fashion is fierce in Asia. The calibre of the participants rocketed through the roof. As our team was in the audience watching each collection’s presentation, we were so in awe of everyone’s creations. They have sourced a variety of different materials including sequins, gemstones, organza silk, and combining all the different techniques like gilding and Thai cultural elements. Although we are now just a little envious of the winner who will receive a million baht scholarship to study a master’s degree in the UK as well as serving as a fashion stylist at the magazine, the hard work has certainlye paid off. The students diligently worked super hard together, even if they didn’t get the crown to win first prize, I am sure we will see their faces again in the near future. Toodles ladies, stay tune with me for more as Bangkok is buzzing with all the exciting new season fashion shows and presentations this month. Following are some of my favourite pics from Bangkok International Fashion Week.
WHERE TO GO The place where flesh is uniform, models seem vanilla and hipsters reign supreme. It’s no wonder this hedonistic playground attracts tourists from across the globe, creating a veritable melting pot of mixed cultures, quirkiness and unapologetic juxtapositions. On any given day, locals can be found decorating the North Bondi grassy knoll or green smoothie-ing it up in one of the many organic cafés. You’d be forgiven for thinking no one actually works a 9-5 job in this beachy ‘burb. South Bondi plays host to tourists from an alphabet of countries keen to experience the natural beauty and manmade excitement of Sydney’s most iconic beach.
WHERE TO SHOP If there’s one thing about Bondi’s fashion scene it’s that anything goes and the stylistic footprint of transients arguably influences and propels trends forward at a rate unto its own. The trick to fitting in is to make an effort without looking like you’ve made an effort. Bondi’s famous Sunday markets are a great place to find a quintessential Bondi bargain and it’s not uncommon to find your favorite B-list celebrity manning a stall in order to make a quick buck in the off season. But don’t be fooled into thinking those slashed jeans and moth eaten shirts paraded by locals were bargain basement gems mined from the local thrift store. Most of the swag modeled by these hipsters is made up of carefully puttogether designer threads and the growing number of trendy stores of Bondi.
WHAT TO PACK It’s a beach. Bikini’s, bikini’s and more bikini’s! The summer months are delightfully hot so light weight basics to mix-and-match are a must.
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