What is Insight's design philosophy?
I have worked in high-end fashion and in a more skate style capacity, so I have quite a broad range of experience… and I really love that. I guess I looked at the surf/skate market in Australia and wondered why it needed to be so bad! What I thought would be a good direction for Insight was to add a lot more styling and trends—make it fun and ultimately an easy-to-wear product, but never at the cost of looking good. This really is the philosophy—every piece can be worn to the beach or down the street.
(Insight's "Heroes of Xerox" spring '08 by Natalie Wood)
Describe the other labels you design, Something and Something Else.
Certain things that I was into style-wise didn’t really fit in the Insight collection so I started this new brand, Something, which is a bit more fashion forward and directional. I felt like this was an area of fashion that would be cool and fun to work in, push the ideas a little more, make it a bit edgier and older, and it really has such a fun quirky and unique image of its own now. Something Else is much closer to my true creativity. It’s definitely more fashion-forward and high-end with more luxurious fabrics and polished designs. It is where I get to truly express myself so much more.
Why have you chosen installations to showcase Something and Something Else?
For me, the catwalk is not really the right mode of expression. I love fashion, but I love even more creating a story and an art feel. I like to be able to take people into my world of creativity, and in fashion alone it is difficult to do this. The ‘doll house’ was something I dreamed of. I thought it would be amazing to build a life size one, have the models dress up, and create an amazing stage to show the fashion. It was one of the most magical experiences I have ever had created.
Where do you find inspiration for your designs?
Oh, the inspiration comes from endless and unknown places. Nature is probably my biggest inspiration. It is so endless in its supply of fascinating and interesting things. Then, I love people watching and trying to get inside their heads about why they are doing or wearing things—kind of like anthropology I guess.
Would you say Australia's fashion-forward style is influenced more abroad or is it internal?
I think when you live in Australia you are always looking overseas. For me it all started because it always seemed so much more interesting and fantastic overseas. Now I think we need to acknowledge what is happening around the world—every place has it's own unique essence. There are some really amazing Australian labels doing incredibly unique fantastic things… It is such a great place to design from because you can lock yourself away from too many influences and really get inside your head. Let’s face it—we are a long long away from everything… so that isolation is an incredible bonus to developing a personal style.
interview, image: nylonmag, insight51