Last week I celebrated some exciting news with my friend Belinda Glynn whose fashion label, OnceWas is launching its Spring/Summer ’17 collection into David Jones.
It’s OnceWas’ first department store partnership and creative director Belinda, told me they gave it a lot of thought before agreeing to the relationship.
“They approached us about 12 months ago after seeing some of our pieces in a boutique,” said Belinda. “It was nice that they found us because they came across the product and loved it.”
“My philosophy has always been that we bide our time and build the brand to the point where people notice us organically, rather than through direct marketing, so that any partnerships we form are on our terms.”
“The buyer understands our label, its broad appeal and boutique feel. The impact of launching into David Jones on our loyal long-term stockists was a major consideration so we will be introducing the range gradually into select David Jones stores.“
The launch lunch was an intimate affair showcasing the OnceWas Resort Collection (in stores this week) to 30 guests including Age fashion editor Janice Breen-Burns, Age fashion and lifestyle editor Mel Singer, talent stylists from Channel 7 and Channel 10, fashion bloggers and a handful of TV personalities who been great supporters of the brand.
Belinda hails from South Africa and she partly designed the Resort collection during a recent trip back to visit her family. She spent a lot of time in the Cape, and the colours of the environment inspired this, OnceWas’ twelfth collection – the mountains meeting the sea with undulating vineyards, botanical gardens & spectacular sunsets.
“This ‘Garden Route’ resort collection sees a continuation of the trend for really feminine silhouettes, ruffles and delicate lace detailing we’ve been seeing in fashion recently,” said Belinda, “but the pieces are versatile so you can button the ruffle trims on or off. A dramatic ruffle sleeve unbuttons into a sleeveless tank or a waterfall ruffle pant transforms into a classic cigarette shape.”
“A lot of thought went into the versatility of each piece, and I tried to consider the different ways people might want to wear it to suit their own style.”
With this new David Jones partnership under their belt, and the label going from strength to strength domestically, global domination now awaits OnceWas.
“We really want to concentrate on expanding into international markets next,” said Belinda. “After successful fashion market weeks in New York & L A. & with our Armada collection already retailing in Harvey Nichols Hong Kong for Fall, we’re now attracting a lot of interest from Dubai department stores such as Bloomingdales and Harvey Nichols & planning our first sales trip to the Middle East early next year.”
I have known Belinda for 17 years and to I have seen her growth in fashion in Australia from day one, so to say I am proud of her is an understatement. The fashion industry is tough and she designs everything, sources all the fabrics, works on the relationships with the buyers, supervises the photoshoots and is across all the boring bits (like those horrible spreadsheets and sums!). She is one talented lady and guess what, she has only just begun.
You can follow Belinda’s fashion adventures on Instagram @bel_glynn @oncewas__
Images: Katie Fergus.