What’s one thing you’ll take with you from 2020?
Energy goes where focus flows. You truly can do, create, feel, and conquer whatever you put your mind and heart to. The problem is not the problem. The reaction is the problem, so everything can be figured out. 2020 has been the biggest growth year for all of us. I like to think of this year as the rise of the Phoenix, it has pushed us all to rise and bring strong adapting and creating energy. For me, this year has really solidified the inner power and strength that we all hold and has truly brought us together as a collective. Every moment brings a gift - we just have to shift perspective.
And one you’ll leave behind?
Honestly, nothing! This year has helped me form exactly who I am and really solidify and ground in that space, honouring the human being I am and what I am willing to give. With every moment of darkness, it leads us to the light. This year has created huge change, change that I believe has set the foundations for who we will all be in the future and what our values and world will look like. I look back on this year and am so grateful for every moment, because everything is perfect as it is, always. I also thrive in the fast lane and naturally operate in flow and adaptability, loving that each day brings a new challenge. So I’ll take that learning forth to the next decade and beyond!
An upcoming designer that really excites you and why?
Van Der Kooij. Van Der Kooij has it all. Tash is an incredible, beautiful human, she is authentic, a sustainability champion / pioneer and a true designer. Tash always designs and creates from a story, each piece then reflects this story; every piece is always filled with so much intention and purpose. In terms of sustainability, Van Der Kooij is truly pushing the boundaries, and this has been the case since day 1. Each piece is made to order only in limited runs, made in Melbourne Australia, materials from end of roll / deadstock, plant-atree program for each purchase, vegetable dyed leather, GOTS certified fabrics, recycled packaging printed with non-toxic dyes, ECA printing. I love that each collection has a story and inspiration that has such connection with Tash (VDK owner and designer), there is a motif placed onto each piece for the wearer to reflect on and have that special connection. One collection was inspired from her grandparent’s garden and each piece had a small, embroidered flower motif, one for each unique flower from the garden. Van Der Kooij is one to watch and a brand that I personally champion. The product is also so unique and funwe need fun in our lives and pieces that make you feel beautiful. I know Van Der Kooij is going to do incredible things.
Favourite second hand purchase?
I purchased an incredible Givenchy Sweater on a marketplace group many moons ago before a New York trip, it was one of my very first designer purchases and I absolutely loved this cosy sweater. I recently had a weekend garage sale with the Del Rainbow girls in Bryon Bay and I passed this special piece on for someone else to love and enjoy. That was a treasured moment. Pieces create moments in your life and I even got to exchange the story with her and talk about the piece, I knew that it was going to be loved and go on to creating more memories in someone else’s life. What a special experience.
How do you think we can continue to shift the collective consciousness to appreciate a more sustainable fashion model (second hand clothing, shopping less, better quality, strategic wardrobe edits etc) over the fast fashion model?
Knowledge is power. We can only make a shift if we make it our goal to educate and ensure that we strive to make an impact. It is our responsibility to educate and do this well. It is so important for us to each do our part in enlightening the boarder collective in understanding not only the impact, but what goes into creating quality pieces, we need to show people the love, care and the purpose behind pieces. We need to humanize the process. If we focus on creating value providing education behind the choices of fabric, making processes, business choices, the people, their ethos and values this is what will create a positive shift in consciousness and understanding as one or more of these elements will have a greater impact on people as you have to strike a chord with them with what matters.
Everyone has a different trigger point that makes them feel connected to something, so we need to do our part in thoroughly educating and communicating behind the scenes and the choices. If we don’t do this, how can people ‘buy’ better? We need to provide people with the positive impact they can make alongside the negative impact of the fast fashion model. We are learning each and every day about different choices we can make and if we can make it very well known that these choices are accessible to businesses, we can then help foster the change and set the standard. It is after all, the people who will make the largest impact with supporting and caring about what they are buying into. We need to ensure that people feel they are a part of something and that there is a vision for something greater.
Educate, educate and continue to educate some more. This encourages people to want to learn more or at least, a shift in perspective. It has to be a huge part of our vocabulary. If something hits someone’s heart, they will tell 5 or 10 more people, and with that, we have the power to make a change. We can then demand a shift at a greater level to meet the demand of this wave. For me, I encourage even our team in Del Rainbow Store at the end of each day to tell us 5 things they were able to teach someone who came into the store about sustainability and what our standards are, what choosing recycled and regenerated materials mean for both the garment quality and the earth and overall, that you can have luxury and sustainable product in one.