Alessandra Eddy, Luna Atelier

Alessandra Eddy, Luna Atelier | Interview | Travelshopa

Silk pyjamas and luxe loungewear have become staples which are fit to transcend well beyond the bedroom. When we chance upon an emerging brand that is unique, staying true to self and founded upon the right experience, the product always speaks for itself. Sydney-based Laura Hannan and Alessandra Eddy have created LUNA ATELIER with the intention to create beautiful, luxury sleepwear, and they have achieved just that. In a short time, they have released two standout TAILORED SLEEPWEAR collections and no doubt have more up their sleeve. We talk to Alessandra about their journey in the latest fashion category that is definitely here to stay.

What were you doing before you started your label?

I studied Fashion Design and Production at East Sydney then worked in PR and Marketing for years. I worked for a PR agency and then went in-house with a group of international luxury goods houses.

Laura worked in marketing for media houses and then went into operations for importing in retail.

What inspired you to start your label?

We were new mums who wanted to start our own business. We wanted to create a beautiful, luxury sleepwear offering in Australia as there are only a handful of brands overseas however, we couldn’t find any of the same calibre in our local market.

If asked to describe your label to someone unfamiliar with it, what would you say?

Bringing sophistication back to the bedroom, our tailored sleepwear is designed to make women feel chic from dawn till dusk. Cast aside the oversized shapeless t-shirts and replace them with fashion-forward 100% silk pyjamas. As women we take such care of ourselves from 9-5, our philosophy is why not do it every hour of the day.

What is ‘tailored sleepwear’?

Tailored sleepwear are garments cut to compliment the female form. Some features include Italian slant pockets, tuxedo lapels, silk piping, elasticised waistbands. Our garments keep comfort at the forefront with a fashion-forward design, perfect to be worn out of the house.

What makes your label unique?

Our sleepwear is designed not only for the bedroom but to be worn out of the house. The unique pieces can pair in with your wardrobe or wear as a set to make a statement.

What is your design philosophy?

First and foremost that each piece is comfortable to wear but cut perfectly to compliment the female form, always avoiding the oversized, shapeless look.

How would you describe your design process?

We are inspired by interior fabrications, periods in fashion and unique cultures across the globe. A certain colour or way of dress can form the main theme and undercurrent to a collection.

Alessandra Eddy, Luna Atelier | Interview | Travelshopa
Alessandra Eddy, Luna Atelier | Interview | Travelshopa
Alessandra Eddy, Luna Atelier | Interview | Travelshopa

Who are your customers?

Women looking for sleepwear that is fashionable and makes them feel fabulous when wearing it! We have many customers buying our pyjamas as gifts, they are ideal presents for new mums, bridal showers etc.

What are your best selling pieces/collections?

Our stand out and signature is our Paloma Pyjama Shirt and Pant (pictured below). Our customers purchase this as a full set to either wear at home or break it up to wear out and about. E.g shirt to work tucked into a pencil skirt and heels or pants with sneakers and a t-shirt.

Where do you look for inspiration?

Lifestyle. We take our print inspiration from artists, world travellers and inspirational women. All of our garments are named after iconic women of the past, designed for women of our future.

How has the Internet/digital marketing impacted your business?

We have only operated in a digital savvy environment. From our previous experience in marketing and PR, we have recognised the positive benefits. Being able to communicate directly with consumers, potential customers and to be able to control our own visual blueprint in the marketplace.

What’s the best business advice you have received?

Always have something up your sleeve, never over commit and be strategic in all of your business decisions.

What do you think the future holds for your label and Australian designers?

We see a big movement in the sleepwear and lifestyle category. More and more customers are wanting longevity and ease in their wardrobes, less trend-driven and more lifestyle-focused.

Alessandra Eddy, Luna Atelier | Interview | Travelshopa
Alessandra Eddy, Luna Atelier | Interview | Travelshopa

JP Jones, Sound Portraits

Sound Portraits by Jp Jones | Meet the Artist | Travelshopa

Image via JP Jones

JP JONES is an international contemporary artist and acclaimed musician, whose work has taken him all around the world. After being blown away by his latest work SOUND PORTRAITS, which was exhibited at the Camilla Boutique, Paddington, I was intrigued to learn more about the Welsh artist's creative process and the inspiration behind his work. Here, the new father shares his love of Caravaggio, why he unifies art and music, and how he celebrates his favourite classic songs.

My first art love was… Caravaggio. I loved the drama he created in religious scenes. His use of light and dark felt way ahead of its time. His understanding of perspective was almost back to front but felt correct. I get that! His work just stuck out to me when I was studying renaissance painters at school.

The turning point in my career was… when I took my ‘invention’ to a deaf school in London. I got the deaf students to make sounds into a microphone enabling them to see their own voices. I also played songs and they were able to watch the sound patterns of the laser’s reflection. It was an amazing experience to watch people who can’t hear seeing sound for the first time.

Can you tell us a bit about your artistic process? 

Sound portraits started after I watched a kids tv show! On the show they had cut both ends of a soup can and stretched a balloon over one end. They shone a torch through the other end and spoke into the can. When the balloon vibrated it created a light projection on the wall.

I then developed my technique by putting mirror on a speaker, and shining a laser beam on to the mirror. When the speaker vibrated to music it caused the mirror to move and the reflection of the laser created a sound projection on the wall. A literal visual representation of sound!

Sound Portraits by Jp Jones | Meet the Artist | Travelshopa

"A great work of art is in the eye of the beholder. A piece of art can be perfect to one person but not to the next." Jp Jones

A sound portrait is… a painting of the laser’s reflection to sound. I project the moving sound patterns to songs and words like “I love you” on to canvas and paint them. Sometimes incorporating portraiture and Celtic symbols that relate to the particular sound. I always start a sound portrait by building a structure (home) for the sound patterns to live inside. The colours I choose for each piece happen when I hear the sound over and over. I close my eyes and feel the colours.

I work with… acrylic paint, spray paint and oil pastels. I also make solar etchings where I photograph the sound patterns and transfer the photo on to solar plates and expose them to light and then etch the plates on a press.

The inspiration behind my latest series… was to create a group of paintings of songs that changed my life in one way or another. I wanted to affect the viewer as I was affected as a listener. Making each song speak in the same way on canvas as it does on record.

My latest series is… a celebration of classic songs. Rock and roll meets art.

Sound Portraits by Jp Jones | Meet the Artist | Travelshopa
Sound Portraits by Jp Jones | Meet the Artist | Travelshopa

My favourite subjects to paint are… the personal recordings. When people record “I love you” and I paint their words. The most poignant commission I did was when a lady’s husband had died and I painted the last answer machine message he left her. She has that message on her wall forever.

When I feel I’m stuck… I usually go into my music studio and write songs.

My creative influences… change all the time. At the moment I’m massively influenced by artists such as Retna, Gregory Siff and Danny Minnick. And all music. Always!

My top 5 songs right now…

Daughter – Loudon Wainwright lll

Sweet Thing – Van Morrison

Flim – Aphex Twin

Good Fortune – PJ Harvey

Flagship – Jason Isbell

Imby Langenbach, KARMME

Creating has always been a part of Imby Langenbach’s life. It’s what she does when life gets too busy, when she needs to clear her mind. Through a need and desire to create KARMME was born; a leather bag brand that at its core is all about quiet, peace, serenity, composure, and the absence of agitation.

Imby Langenbach, Karmme | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

When Imby Langenbach made a clutch as a gift to her sister, little did she know it would turn into a full-time business. The clutch soon gained traction on social media and led her to create the brand, KARMME.

Pronounced as “calm”, the Sydney-based brand creates elegant leather clutches, totes, travel bags and other bags and accessories using premium Italian leather. The simple yet practical design of KARMME bags was influenced when she needed to swap her shoulder bag for a handy clutch to keep her essentials, while recovering form neck surgery.

Apart from the simplicity and versatility of design, another hallmark of the KARMME clutches or as she likes to call them “the ladies” is its bespoke nature. The products are made locally in Sydney and consist of six collections including the Classic range with colours made exclusively for KARMME, and the signature Shibori range (a traditional Japanese dyeing technique).

We take a peek inside Imby’s life as she shares some interesting tidbits about herself, KARMME and her hometown Sydney.

What’s your first fashion memory?

Making my year 7 dance outfit, a mint green pencil skirt and a matching blouse, white with mint green butterflies on it!

Success is…

Waking up each day looking forward to spending the day doing what you love doing.

I can’t start my day until…

I’ve sat quietly with a coffee, scrolled through my emails and social media and chosen a playlist to listen to whilst I work.

Where do you look for inspiration?

I don’t tend to look for it but I find myself observing a lot whilst travelling, colours, textures, and thinking about how an object that’s practical and needed can be made beautiful.

How would you describe your design process?

I usually start with a need then I work out how I can best design a shape that works practically but also beautifully to fulfil that need. When I work with Shibori Textiles on collaborations with leather design, we think about colour and a story usually evolves once we work on pattern around that colour way.

What is your design philosophy?

Simple, elegant, not following trends, meaningful, well thought through, easy going and versatile.

Imby Langenbach, Karmme | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

"I have become better at drawing a line and not working when it’s family time but a creative business also needs to be fluid, sometimes I just have to make a design I have in my head."

What does work life balance mean to you?

I think when you love what you do there is a cross over of work and life. I don’t wait for Friday to come so I can finish ‘work’ I see it as part of my week in amongst raising three daughters. I have become better at drawing a line and not working when it’s family time but a creative business also needs to be fluid, sometimes I just have to make a design I have in my head and luckily my husband and kids know and understand that about me!

What advice do you wish you had received 5 years ago?

Be less concerned with what others think and go for it.

If you were not a designer, what would you be doing?

I would loved to have studied graphic art or been a pastry chef.

Who is your style icon?

Cate Blanchett, love everything about her

Which designer/s do you admire and why?

I love the designer behind Aesop. I think it’s such a clever concept with the stores, clean branding and beautiful products.

How would you describe your personal style?

Understated, simple, classic

How would you describe the style/vibe of Sydney?

Sydney has the best of both worlds. It is a big city with all that has to offer but also a collection of communities that bring with them their own unique vibe. I live on the beaches and it feels like I’m on summer holidays all the time. I love going into Surry Hills and the inner West for a completely different feel. You can mix it up very easily in Sydney.

What is your favourite thing about Sydney?

The variety of food, people, places and landscapes. You can be at the beaches in the morning then the mountains by the afternoon.

Shop The Story

Azure | Karmme | Imby Langenbach, Karmme | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

Karmme

Azure

Swoon | Karmme | Imby Langenbach, Karmme | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

Karmme

Swoon

Bo - Mini | Karmme | Imby Langenbach, Karmme | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

Karmme

Bo – Mini

Bella | Karmme | Imby Langenbach, Karmme | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

Karmme

Bella

Chad Nguyen, CHADDIE

Chad Nguyen of CHADDIE may be pegged as one to watch by the Australian fashion media, but this savvy designer recognises that in order to succeed in the long run, he has to keep those creative wheels turning.

CHAD NGUYEN, CHADDIE | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

Chad grew up in Ho Chi Minh City, before moving to Sydney four years ago to pursue his studies in Fashion Design at the Raffles College of Design and Commerce. You could say fashion runs in the blood. Chad’s grandfather was a tailor; his mum was the owner of a fashion boutique and his dad was constantly tinkering with fabrics and textiles, even jewellery. Quite the fashionable family we’d admit, and yet, Chad held absolute fashion authority in the family, picking out items of clothing and accessories for his mother and sisters.

Realising his affinity for fashion, Chad started his eponymous label, CHADDIE in his second year of college, releasing a small capsule sportswear collection that sold out in-store. During his senior year, CHADDIE was chosen as one of seven to showcase at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia 2016 (MBFW 2016) in May.

We already see glimpses of a world-ready designer in Chaddie’s blend of flattering and feminine pieces. There’s a comforting sense of the classic, interlaced with a chic, modern and playful spirit — perhaps qualities of the women he draws inspiration from.
We chat to Chad about women as his muse and the highs and lows of being a new designer.

First off, congratulations on your Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week debut! Could you tell us more about your experience?

It was absolutely exciting and I still remember the vibe. I was preparing for my graduation showcase at the Raffles College Graduate Show in December 2015, and just one week before the show, my professor told me I had been selected to present my debut collection at MBFWA 2016.

After the graduate showcase was over, Marie Claire Australia posted a photo of my creations on Instagram and I knew it was the right time for me to start bringing CHADDIE to a serious level. I was working on the collection for three months, and the experience was extremely hectic.

From conceptualisation, sketching, fabrication and pattern-making to manufacturing, photo shoots and PR plans…it was all so real and one day I woke up and it hit me. I asked myself: “Am I actually one of the Australian-based fashion designers now? Am I really going to debut my first collection in a few months?” The moment I saw my name amongst all the big fashion houses and senior designers such as Dion Lee, Ellery and Toni Maticevski, I knew that all my hard work would eventually get me somewhere. I just gotta keep working hard everyday.

What has the experience taught you?

Be patient, be kind, be passionate and stay positive. Find the fun in everything that you’re going through.

What was the inspiration behind your latest Cruise ’16 Collection?

Cruise ’16 was a celebration of women. The 10 looks represented 10 different personalities and attitudes that women possess, expressed through a variety of style and silhouette. The colourway was strongly inspired by a certain mood — each one defines a specific female character. I’d envision where she’d go, how she looks like, what’s her motivation, her passion and her sense of lifestyle.

I have been surrounded by women all my life — my mother, my sisters, my best friend. I observe my mom in her gold silk pajamas, looking stylish but still feeling comfortable, or my sister wearing that funky striped trench coat to work. Everyone has inspired me so much in this collection. I want to create a collection that every female can see herself in it and relate to.

Chad Nguyen, Chaddie | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa
Chad Nguyen, Chaddie | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

Can you tell us a bit about your creative and design process? How does a collection typically start to form?

First, I would start with an idea or concept. I identify the sort of things I want to look into. It could be an artwork, an artist or a selection of music, colour or texture. I love to be inspired by the street. I usually take my sketchbook with me around the city, paying close attention to people, architecture and my surroundings.

A busy morning at the train station or lady holding a coffee in her hand while rushing to work could easily inspire me. I would be like “Hmm, if her shirt cuffs were a little longer and sturdier, they would be so striking”. Simple things in life inspire me.

What does a typical day of work involve for you?

At the moment, I’m quite busy with the FW 2017 collection, which will be showcased at Vietnam Designer Fashion Week, an event that’s held in my hometown. I start the day designing, putting pieces and details together, and playing around with fabrics and textiles for the remainder of the day. I hardly stop for lunch, usually slipping bites in between emails, editing my website or posting updates on Instagram. For me, it’s all about fashion.

What are some of the greatest challenges you’ve faced since starting and running CHADDIE?

Keeping the brand on the run! I’ve tried my best to avoid blank space. I got to keep my brand going, that’s why media works are important too as I’ll need to keep my brand interesting with new editorials, streetstyle photos, news… CHADDIE has only been launched in Sydney since May 2016 and going to be launched in Vietnam in November 2016, the brand is still new and fresh and I have to keep it going.

I have been surrounded by women all my life — my mother, my sisters, my best friend. I observe my mom in her gold silk pajamas, looking stylish but still feeling comfortable, or my sister wearing that funky striped trench coat to work. Everyone has inspired me so much in this collection. I want to create a collection that every female can see herself in it and relate to.

How have your Vietnamese roots contributed towards your unique sensibility towards fashion?

The fashion industry in Vietnam is growing rapidly. The buyers and customers in Vietnam go crazy for big houses like Chanel or Dior but a great thing about them is that they also love wearing local designers. There are many Vietnamese designers that are dedicated and possess great fashion instincts and they’re doing really well there. As a Vietnamese currently living in Sydney, I like the fact that I get to have that cultural knowledge and awareness and apply it to my work. In one of my designs from the Cruise ’16 collection, you can sense a low-key inspiration that came from the Ao Dai — a traditional Vietnamese garment. I love Vietnam. I’m proud of where I came from and I love to celebrate it.

How have your Vietnamese roots contributed towards your unique sensibility towards fashion?

The fashion industry in Vietnam is growing rapidly. The buyers and customers in Vietnam go crazy for big houses like Chanel or Dior but a great thing about them is that they also love wearing local designers. There are many Vietnamese designers that are dedicated and possess great fashion instincts and they’re doing really well there. As a Vietnamese currently living in Sydney, I like the fact that I get to have that cultural knowledge and awareness and apply it to my work. In one of my designs from the Cruise ’16 collection, you can sense a low-key inspiration that came from the Ao Dai — a traditional Vietnamese garment. I love Vietnam. I’m proud of where I came from and I love to celebrate it.

Chad Nguyen, Chaddie | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa
Chad Nguyen, Chaddie | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa
Chad Nguyen, Chaddie | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

How does it feel to have garnered some measure of industry support so early on in your career?

It’s just unbelievable. I will never forget the feeling. For such a new and young designer like myself who just graduated a few months ago, it is such an honor and I couldn’t be more grateful.

What changes would you like to see in future fashion weeks? Do you feel there is enough industry support for new design talent?

I genuinely feel there’s been strong support for emerging designers. It’s not just the industry but I also think the designers should be the ones to chase the opportunities. For me, I believe that success won’t come if you sit and wait for it…you have to chase it and grab it. Of course, if you’re hardworking and talented, I believe the effort will pay off.

What advice do you have for budding designers with global ambitions or anybody involved in creative work?

I think I should be the one to ask for advice (laughs). I mean, all of us emerging designers, we have to really enjoy what we’re doing and keep up the hard work. You won’t become a star overnight but as long as you believe in yourself and do your best, opportunity will present itself and that will be up to you if you’re going to take it or leave it. Also, when it comes to designing, [always try to] break out of the box.

Who are some of the designers and creatives who you think are doing great work?

I love Christopher Kane and Raf Simons. Their work inspires me so much. I do enjoy the work of Stella McCartney and Louis Vuitton too.

What are you working on now and what are you looking forward to in the near future?

I’m currently working on my upcoming FW17 collection which will be showcased at Vietnam Designer Fashion Week 2017 this November, and alongside that I’m finding stockists for the Cruise ’16 collection, I’m opening a Pop Up Showroom this November in Vietnam and I can’t wait to launch my Cruise ’16 collection there and also present my upcoming pieces from FW17.

Chad Nguyen, Chaddie | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

Bruno Dutot, Vaucluse

Have you ever wondered who is behind the iconic public mural at Edgecliff? And then be more mystified as “this angel” has popped up in other peculiar spots around Sydney, and no doubt beyond…

BRUNO DUTOT, VAUCLUSE | Behind the Seams | Travelshopa

The artist behind this famed image, Oucha, is French-born painter Bruno Dutot. Oucha fist appeared as a wall mural on the corner of New South Head Road and Darling Point Road in 1991, during his stint as an illegal immigrant. Dutot updated the Edgecliff icon regularly, an estimated 300 plus times, until he was allegedly sent to a detention centre and then sent back to France. Ever since, other artists have maintained Oucha. Dutot has now returned to his beloved Sydney, and touches up Oucha when he feels the original line has been lost (and, as always, work only happens at night).

We hope you get to enjoy Bruno Dutot’s art work as much as we have enjoyed growing up with Oucha in our lives.

Bruno Dutot

50 New South Head Rd, Vaucluse 2030 NSW, Australia

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