Interview with our favourite Chef's Rachel Khoo's Team over at Khoollect - All about our love of clothing and how we got to this point.

Creating modern-day vintage fashion

Editor-in-Chief Rachel Khoo loves stumbling across new designers to add to her collection of vintage-inspired fashion pieces. When filming My Kitchen Rules in Australia last year, one of the Sydney-based designers that featured in her wardrobe and quickly became a firm favourite was Gigi’s. Started in 1996, Gigi’s originally focused on making tutus and fairy-styled products. After many years of wholesaling around the globe, owner and designer  Gemma took a sharp tangent and started making vintage-inspired pieces for women. Here’s Gemma’s story:

A day in the life

What’s the philosophy behind Gigi’s?

If you wouldn’t wear it, don’t make it. I aim to make pieces that you should be able to wear in many ways, without being limited to a one-event wear.

Gigi's Australian Fashion

You’ve been operating since 1996. Tell us about some of your major achievements …

By far my most exciting achievement, which is a humble but significant one, is having a retail venue that people are always excited to see. It’s been great starting and managing a store in Newtown, which is an area full of creative and colourful people, and being able to collaborate with some of the wonderful businesses nearby.

How did you get into making vintage/rockabilly/pin-up style clothing – is this a style you’re passionate about?

We started developing some pieces that weren’t available in the general market many years ago. Lately a lot of overseas companies have picked up on the trend which is great for ladies that want to try the style, before committing to a new look. Our point of difference has always been using fabric agents to find us fabrics, or help us design new fabric pieces. We’re always excited about getting to cut into a new roll as soon as we get our hands on it.

What’s the piece your most proud of?

It changes all the time. We see our prints and designs on different people all the time, and sometimes you just think ‘amazing’. Personally, I’ve found our Angelina print has been a great one for me – particularly through the second and third trimeter of my first pregnancy, as the print is really sweet and sits nicely over the bump.

Best Kept Secrets

I khoollect a few…

I have a little obsession with finding beautiful crystalware, including serving dishes, wine glasses, small bowls, and vases. It’s something that always catches my eye when I’m shopping at markets or second hand stores.

What’s your favourite item in your khoollection?

Our cot (although my partner thinks it should be the Weber BBQ). We took a long time to pick the cot, and now that it’s finally here and set up, we’re very excited to fill it with our hopefully healthy and happy bub in the coming weeks.

Your five wardrobe essentials?

Leather tailored jacket, red high heels, basic black or white figure-hugging cap-sleeved shirt and black jeans.
And, of course, a GiGi’s dress or skirt.

Who’s your #khoollectcrush?

My mother – the original creator of GiGi’s. She’s always putting things together, or trying to work out how to get a different fabric to work, even though she’s retiring. She can’t help herself. It’s fascinating to watch, and see the passion that has been there for so many years still burning.

Urban Favourites

Where do you call home and what do you love most about it?

Sydney. It’s changing all the time. When it comes to food, shopping and generally exploring the area, we always try to find something new and rarely fail to achieve this. Sydney can have a feel of a small village; every time we’re in the store, or out and about, we bump into a familiar or friendly face that usually has some great stories.

Your favourite place for breakfast?

West Juliette and The Vintage Cafe.

Best spot for dinner?

Stanbuli – I can’t get enough of this great new place.

Where do you like to shop for clothing and accessories?

Eva Franco – It’s a US brand that uses the most amazing fabric.

How do you spend a lazy Sunday?

I don’t get many of these, but when I do it’s breakfast at The Boathouse Palm Beach.

If you could live anywhere else, where would it be?

Tahiti. I can’t speak highly enough of the lovely people that we’ve encountered, and the nature throughout the islands.

April 01, 2016 by Gigi's Fairy Fashion
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