Thursday, June 13, 2024

The 20-year-old brand making its fashion week debut

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“Opening that store was pivotal,” she says. “I got to know the customer so much better.” To this day, she remains “obsessed” with visual merchandising. “Being in the store is very informative,” she says. “You learn so much about what is being picked up, what is missing from the collection.”

Now, with more than 260 staff and 25 stores, opportunities to rearrange the shelves are few and far between. In 2020, the brand introduced a unisex range that Woods says is not menswear, but more a gesture to recognise the fluid way many of us now dress. “I love wearing menswear,” she says. “And so many male friends requested a men’s range.”

The collection is a creative flex for her team, she says, and an acknowledgement that “clothing is about what looks good, not what side of the store it’s from”.

Woods first created simple basics due to her own frustration with shopping. 

Woods can’t divulge details of the show, which will be styled by industry veteran Karla Clarke, but says Australian style has come into its own in the quarter-century she’s been at the helm of Viktoria & Woods.

“We are a very relaxed country when it comes to dressing,” she says. “But that doesn’t mean we’re without style. We dress for our environment, and we really embrace our surroundings. We have a lot to say.”

Perfumer to the shows

Creed’s Queen of Silk perfume. 

The British/French perfumer House of Creed has signed up as the official fragrance partner of Australian Fashion Week for three years in a first for both parties.

Established in 1760, Creed has in the past partnered with designers showing at London Fashion Week, but this is the first time it is a sponsor of an entire event.

It marked the occasion with the Australian launch this month of Queen of Silk, a heady scent weaving Chinese osmanthus, tuberose and passionfruit with Javanese patchouli and vanilla, and the dry woods of cedar and agar. Australian designer Michael Lo Sordo was chosen to create a dress inspired by the scent, and it will be debuted at his runway show on Tuesday.

There will be a Queen of Silk installation, a Museum of Creed and Creed Bar at Carriageworks, the site of fashion week, and $99 tickets are available for a fragrance masterclass presented by the brand on Friday, the final day of the shows.

“This marks the largest activation Creed has ever undertaken in Australia,” says Creed CEO Sarah Rotheram. “It’s not only an opportunity to showcase the brand’s story, but also to champion Australian design and artistry.”

Creed, a London tailoring company, got its head start in fragrances by delivering scented leather gloves to King George III, and moved headquarters to Paris in 1854.

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