Extra! Extra! Read all about it! We have some breaking news.
Philosophy Australia has launched an online store!
Additionally, to our wonderful boutiques around the country who stock our label, we are offering a 24 hour shopping option for Philosophy fans who have struggled to find a local stockist.
Let's have a chat with Alison Lennard, our designer, GM and heart and soul of the Philosophy Australia label.
What’s your design philosophy?
Our company motto is: Easy wear, easy care and wear any wear/where
This embodies all that we create,meaning that we appreciate that customers are looking for versatility, value and practicality, along with style.
Who is the Philosophy customer?
I call this the Tea Party Concept - Imagine a group of women at a high tea party, this may have been organised as a charity event. The women are a medley of ages, sizes, ethnicities, at different stages of life, some work – some don’t, they may be related – mums and daughters; but they all have the common love of clothing at their core and care about their appearance and the world in which they live.
She’s discerning, she’s sassy, she knows what she likes and has kindness at her core.
What sets Philosophy apart?
Australia, it’s even half of our name!
We, unlike so many other labels, are extremely passionate about maintaining an Australian presence in manufacture. We produce all of our pieces in a couture method. That means one machinist = one garment, rather than a line manufacture where many people are involved.
Having one person cut, and one person sew a garment means that every piece is made with care and pride. We can tell you the name of the person who made each piece and all of the 80+ contractors that we use are considered a part of our extended Sydney based team.
We are also only stocked in premium boutiques. We love that our Philosophy customers can build relationships with our boutique teams, and gain trust and confidence in styling.
What is the best part of your Job?
Everything – I truly love what I do, and the team who I work alongside; we really are a family.
I’ve been designing for the label for eleven years and love that I have control over every element of the brand, and get to be its creative heart and soul.
Was the dream always to be a designer?
Yes, even at 5 years old. Thankfully my parents were very supportive of the choice and I was lucky enough to pursue a degree in Design and Marketing.
I’ve been commercially creating garments for over twenty years now, but still get the “buzz” when I see someone wearing a piece, or hear the excitement in their voice when they tell me about their love for our pieces.
I can hear from your accent that you are English, what brought you to Australia?
Yes, I’m an English rose and will always call England home, but Sydney stole my heart and I’m very happy to say that I am now an Aussie too!
This country is beautiful, has the best people living within it and living in perpetual summer is fabulous. My husband and I just came to visit a friend who’d moved here on holiday, and within 24 hours we decided that we had to live here too.
So, on our return to London after the holiday, we sold our house, quit our jobs, gained a visa and moved to Sydney full of excitement and expectation. Australia hasn’t disappointed, and we now have two children who only know Sydney as home.
How does English style differ to Australian?
I don’t believe there is much difference really. Worldwide we all want the same things when it comes to fashion. I do find though that Australians have much more pride in supporting local businesses. The manufacturing trade in the UK is so small, as everything is produced in Asia on mass scale, so for me I still find that refreshing.
In my previous roles I designed for some prestigious and multinational labels, so coming into a small label was a drastic change for me when I first came to Philosophy, but the values we have here are much more ethical and sustainable, which as a team we are passionate about.
As to your personal style, what inspires you?
I’m very much my target market, I want clothes that are comfortable, flattering and easy to mix and match. I have quite a relaxed style, and like clean lines and uncomplicated shapes. Less is More, is my style essence. I like to let the fabrics, prints or shape shine rather than trying to over design pieces.
What are the trends to watch for this summer?
Natural fibres are getting a big focus, and we offered much more linen in our collection this summer than ever before.
We are also in a tough economic climate at the minute, so we naturally find that animal prints, spots and stripes become popular again, as they are “safe” prints that are eternal.
Colourwise, Coral is Pantone’s pick of the year. You will see that across all product types, not just fashion.
Anything you’d like to add?
I promise you we all do a little happy dance when we hear that our pieces are appreciated, so we can’t wait to hear from our brand fans and make some new ones as we become more available to the broader Australian market by being now available online.
Finally, we asked Ali for Five Faves!
Favourite colour – Pink (of course!)
Favourite movie – All the musicals, Dirty Dancing, Grease, Mary Poppins, Beaches etc….
Favourite music – I have the musical taste of a teenager and a girl crush on Taylor Swift but named my son after Sinatra, who is the only singer my husband and I both agree on!
Favourite food – Anything with sugar! I’m particularly partial to a doughnut
Favourite destination – Venice
It's always fab to hear from Alison!
Have you had a chance to check out our shop yet? We can't wait to hear what you think!