A decade ago, a cute and somewhat quirky boutique made its home in a shopfront on Oxford Street in Paddington, Sydney. Offering a selection of feminine pieces featuring creative prints and textures, that little boutique has evolved into one of Australia's leading "high-end, high-street" brands for women.
Describing itself as a "masstige" brand, fashion label Rodeo Show aims to provide premium designs and quality to the mass womenswear market.
Founder Lisa Moore is at the helm of the design team. Her role is instrumental in guiding the look and direction of each collection. A former accountant, Lisa chose to pursue her passion for fashion over tedious number-crunching; a decision she does not regret.
Editor, Michelle Larin, shot over a few questions to the team at Rodeo Show to discover more about the inner workings of this growing Australian fashion label.
Q: What inspires the creation of Rodeo Show’s designs?
A: It may not sound very glamorous, but our customers inspire all of our designs. We design specifically for their needs. The "Rodeo Show girl" is a modern young lady, who leads an extremely busy lifestyle with a fully booked social calendar. She needs easy to wear beautiful timeless pieces for all occasions, whether for work, dinners, parties, weddings or spring carnival.
Our design mantra is "anything that can be dressed up". We are launching a shoe collection next A/W 2014, which will complement our range. At Rodeo Show, we aim to make fashion easy and effortless; fashion should always be fun!
Q: How do you go about conceptualising you designs?
A: Basically, we start off the season by creating a big mood and trend board to set the tone, look and feel of our new collection. We dissect all of the up-and-coming trends from Stylesight (which is our forecasting website) and choose the trends that work for our brand.
From there, we come up with all our print concepts, which are all designed in-house and exclusive to Rodeo Show. We also work on colours for the season, as this goes hand- in-hand with print conceptualisation. Colour plays a big part in our collection and we are known for our fun colours.
In our studio, we display all the fabrics and bases we will be using to form the backbone of our new collection. Next, we start forming it.
Q: Did any of you study fashion design? How important is it to have a qualification when working in fashion?
A: No. The brand's founder, Lisa, did not study fashion, however she did complete a part-time course in pattern making when she initially started the label. It does help to have qualifications in fashion to get your "foot in the door", however it’s not the "be all and end all". Working in fashion requires creativity and perseverance - two things you cannot learn in a course!
Q: What type of fabrics do you like to work with and why?
A: We mainly like to work with silks and viscoses. Our feminine design style is well-suited to floaty, 'drapey' fabric bases with a vintage wash. We like matte finishes rather than shiny, as the "Rodeo Show girl" is sophisticated and stylish in an understated manner.
Q: What do the designers at Rodeo Show love most about working in fashion?
A: Creating beautiful clothes is what inspires us. Seeing garments come alive from concept to sample keeps us excited! Also, no day is ever the same. Each day presents different challenges and new things to do!
Q: Are your designs influenced by any particular style icons and, if so, who?
A: We love the look of Olivia Palermo, Leigh Lezark and Blake Lively; they always look amazing and effortless. We love girls who dress for themselves and know what they like and dislike.
Q: How would you as a collective define your style?
A: Our design style is, you could say, very practical. We like to create garments that are wearable and comfortable, but at the same time make you feel great and stylish. At Rodeo Show, we are girls creating clothes for girls and we understand all the needs of a great dress, whether it’s the fabric, colour, neckline or length. All of this is into account during the design process when we ask the question: to where would the "Rodeo Show girl" wear this?
Q: What’s the best advice you can give to budding designers wanting to found their own label?
A: Know your niche and know the market. Ask yourself, what is it that sets you apart from the rest? If there are other brands out there already doing what you want to do, then you need to rethink your approach. You want to be the best in whatever it is you do, otherwise your label will not survive. It’s a tough market out there and you need to be clear on your direction and confident in your success.
Q: What’s next for the Rodeo Show brand?
A: There are lots of exciting things coming up for Rodeo Show! Next month we are opening store #6 at Greenwood Plaza in North Sydney. We are also releasing our own Rodeo Show signature candle - the fragrance is to die for! Also next month, we are launching our SS2014 collection which is our strongest to date. We have a dress for every occasion and shoes to match! It's going to be an incredibly busy time for us!
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