basically boutique interview.

Last week I sat down with Dimitra to have a quick chat (that turned into a two hour lengthy conversation, walk around Surry Hills and mini shoot) about her new business venture, Basically Boutique. After sharing her experiences around living in regional Australia, getting awkward stares from the locals while donning her everyday nice clothes to the one decent cafe in the town, I immediately equated her situation with Dr Zoe Hart. While watching Hart of Dixie, my best friend texted me saying 'Net-A-Porter must be Zoe's best friend.' And she's probably right. It just so happens that Net-A-Porter is one of Dimitra's best friends too. Her limited access to labels in stores inspired her to start Basically Boutique, carefully curated with hard-to-find local and international designers.

As promised, my interview with Dimitra (a first for the two of us) and something a little extra for my readers: an exclusive sneak peak of their first campaign shot by fellow blogger bud, Nicole Cooper and featuring the natural stunner, Teresa Oman. The countdown is on. Only two more days until they're open for business. Read on to find out a bit more about what they've got in store (literally). 

M: Basically Boutique is set to launch soon. How are you feeling in the lead up? 

D: We’re launching first of July. I’m nervously excited. I think our fans and our support network are really going to love what they see, but it’s just going to take a while to establish a vibe for the store as we’re still waiting for pieces to come in. 

M: How long has Basically Boutique been in the works? 

D: It’s always been in the works! I studied entrepreneurship at uni and I’ve always wanted my own business but I didn’t know what it was going to be. Because of my husband’s job we’re constantly moving around, and I was on the lookout for new work at each location. I bought an Andéol scarf back in January and I just kept thinking I would love to stock her scarves - they’re beautiful and I’ve never seen them around before. I contacted someone from the team and ask if they would consider supplying to me and from there it just snowballed. 

M: So how much of your time has the boutique consumed? 

D: It’s become a full time thing. I’m up at 6am emailing and then three days a week I work as a marketing manager. As soon as I’m on break or I’m finished for the day, I’m straight back into it. You’ll find me on computer emailing people until midnight. 

M: What labels can we expect to see at Basically Boutique? 

D: We’ve got 10 amazing labels and I’ve just secured one more officially. So we have Andéol digital print scarves, April, May from Paris, the Parisian chic By Zoe, Ciaté nail polishes, Macgraw (I shouldn't have favourites but it is my favourite), Secret South, Thierry Lasry sunglasses, TEXTILE Elizabeth & James denim, Venessa Arizaga jewellery and Veda leather.

M: These labels look a little like what you’re wearing today. Is the boutique a reflection/ extension of your personal style? 

D: Yes, definitely is! I’ve never bought before, but without being too conservative I’ve gotten pieces that reflect my personal style, are easy to wear and seamlessly integrates into your wardrobe. They are also high quality. I don’t want things falling apart because the business is a reflection of who I am. Macgraw for instance is 100% handmade and designed in Australia which is so rare. The amount of clothing that is imported into Australia is some phenomenal number so I think it’s really important to support Australian design talent. 

M: With so many online stores out there, what do you think will be your point of difference? 

D: Product mix and customer service. I want people to feel like they are shopping in store even though it’s online. I want BB to have this corner shop boutique feel. I want the experience between shopping at a brick-and-mortar store and online to be a bit vague because we’re so personalised - that’s what I’m aiming for anyway! And most of the brands you can only buy from us online. 

Our pieces aren’t exactly cheap, but we want our customers to be rest assured that they are getting quality. The majority of things I’ve chosen for the store are classic and timeless pieces that you’re going to keep forever. You feel more comfortable investing in something you know you’ll be able to wear for season to come. 

M: Are you an online or in store shopper? 

D: 100% online! Living in regional Australia - how was I meant to get anything else? When we drove into Tamworth I thought to myself, are we seriously staying here? There was a Cotton On and a Supre, definitely did not cut it. 

M: Where are some of your favourite places to shop? 

D: Shopbop is number one. I also love following boutiques on Facebook, I find a lot of my inspiration there. There’s an amazing boutique in Brisbane called Calexico who maintain an active Facebook page. I think you just become really involved on Facebook and you feel like a part of store. I also love Net-A-Porter and Australian e-tailers like My Chameleon. I haven’t done a lot of shopping lately because of the site! 

M: If you could stock any label at BB, who would it be?

D: Isabel Marant would be my number one. Mainly for the shoes, just so I can get my hands on the Bobby Sneakers. Rag and Bone would also be perfect. If Mary Katrantzou were to do a basics line with her amazing prints, I’d definitely be the first to call!

M: Who is the BB girl?

D: She's fun, informed, well travelled and knows what she's looking for. She's 19 to 39 and wants unique pieces that are of the highest quality. She reads Russh, Vogue, Grazia and follows all the trends through blogs and other forms of social media. She wears the clothes, the clothes never wear her. And on a side note, she would date either Ryan Gossling, Channing Tatum or James Franco.

M: How hard is to start your own business? 

D: It is extremely risky, but I always think ‘no risk, no reward’. There’s never going to be a right time and for me it was like I’ve just got to do it otherwise I’m never going to do it. I don’t want to look back and regret, regardless of whether it succeeds or fails, and I’m hoping it will succeed. Life’s too short not to give something a go. But it’s tough work and requires lots of money. Sometimes I have to remind myself that I’m not Net-A-Porter or Shopbop and I can’t compete with them. I have to be true to who I am, my personal style and the store’s vibe. It’s been a real learning experience. 

M: Where do you see the store in one year? 

D: Well in one year I would love to have a big birthday bash! But in terms of the store I hope  to bring in new brands every season. So fingers crossed by then we’ll have about 15 brands. I just want to keep bringing on brands that people don’t really know of and expose them to talented designers. I want to try and grow the store organically and I want Basically Boutique to be in everyone’s vocabulary. I hope that people will know us for our customer service, our quality and our advice.

Photographer: Nicole Cooper
Model: Teresa Oman
Make Up: Megan Harrison

Image 1: Macgraw top. Image 2: Andéol scarf. Image 3: Veda jacket, April, May dress.

the gloss collection.

A few weeks ago I suffered a minor injury after burning my ear on a straightener and while you might be cringing at the thought, I was actually impressed I had a straightener hot enough to burn me. Yeah I'm weird. But if you owned a $30 straightener that barely heated past 30 degrees and did next to nothing for your hair, you'd be pretty impressed that your new one works a charm. Nothing beats a good quality flat iron, especially when it becomes such a integral part of your every morning ritual (can't imagine what I'd do without mine), and considering the cost per use (practically nothing) it's worth forking out a little extra for something that's efficient, easy to use and you know is going to work. 

If you're in the market for a new straightener, I'd highly suggest checking out what ghd has to offer. They've recently launched a new limited edition ghd flat iron available in a shiny black patent or poppy red, a sleek and more polished take on the class gold series stylers. The gloss IV stylers with advanced ceramic heater technology and swivel cord are perfect for easy, fast straightening as well as producing soft curls and beach waves. Whatever your style for the day, expect your hair to be finished with glossy shine. 

This is a sponsored post.

basically dimitra.

Powering through my Media Globalisation exam to make the bus, I met the exuberant and extremely lovely Dimitra, the brains (and beauty) behind the soon to be launched Basically Boutique. The e-boutique will stock a number of hard-to-find labels including Australian brands MacGraw and Secret Squirrel and joined by the likes of Veda, Thierry Lasry, Venessa Arizaga, By Zoe and TEXTILE Elizabeth and James (you'll want to be familiar with these names). We spent the afternoon at Kawa bonding over our love for Japan, our lust for Isabel Marant wedge sneakers, sharing our experiences in the fashion industry and venting our online shopping frustrations caused by shipping costs, returns and exchange rates. 

I was lucky enough to secure Dimitra's first interview which will be coming to the blog early next week! I couldn't resist getting behind the lens and taking a few snaps of her killer outfit featuring the cutest pastel nails, the covetable and soon to be mine Veda Jasper jacket (Dimitra told me about the number of compliments she gets when she wears it and I can testify to this after the girl at the table next to us stopped her to ask where it was from) and the striking Andeol kaleidoscope scarf both of which will be available at Basically once it launches in July. In the mean time, head over to Facebook and Twitter to stay updated with the store's happenings in the lead up to July 1.

Dimitra is wearing Veda Jasper jacket, Andeol scarf (both arriving soon at Basically Boutique), Bassike tee


This wouldn't be the first time I've seen this collection. In fact it's almost old news to me, but certainly not to you. So of course I have to share the love! I first laid eyes on The Wanderlust earlier this year at our media showing held at Mr Cook, a florist in Potts Point. I've been working with this collection ever since, in fact I could probably tell you the names and colourways  of all the pieces. 

I've been interning at Samantha Wills for just over a year now and after being exposed to two summer, one bridal and two winter collections, I can safely say that The Wanderlust is by far my favourite to date (and my favourite campaign to date too, featuring fresh-faced Saga Rickman).  Inspired by the desire to travel and experience everything the world has to offer, the collection features an injection of peaches, turquoise and yellows amongst burnished golds, silvers and gunmetals. Parts of the collection have a really 1920's art deco feel (I think Chrysler building when I see the Liberty necklace in the last image), the other half embodies the essence of summer with its bright colour palette and layer-able (and by that I mean able to be layered easily) style. 

I love seeing the way Samantha's designs and the SW empire have grown since I started. The way she's incorporated the signature Bohemian Bardot teardrop into many of the pieces in this collection is like no other, seeing how certain elements have evolved throughout the seasons (the gold chain mail-esque necklace in the forth picture was initially part of a statement layered necklace last summer, but the girls in the office loved wearing that one specific part so much so it was made into a solo piece) and of course the incredible styling and merchandising. I was so impressed seeing Samantha hard at work at our first media showing as she brought the collection to life with vases, jars, candles, books, trinkets and blooms. Let me tell you, we've come a long way since the black felt stylist trays!

I swear I'm not biased.... okay maybe just a little, but trust me, you're bound love this collection as much as I do! The collection drops in just a matter of days, July 1 to be exact, so get your wish lists ready (my personal picks are the statement necklaces and the bracelet sets) - I've had mine prepared for months!

girls on film. sloane peterson.

Inspired by Hannah Rose's regular dose of cinematic style and the gentle reminder of my fascination with the 80's teen lifestyle from the John Hughes era courtesy of Angela, I felt it necessary to dedicate a post to a Hughes heroine who didn't really do much in the way of heroism or girl power. In fact she was probably the complete opposite. A devoted girlfriend with little expression of her own opinion or independence, not fraught with boy problems (see Sam in Sixteen Candles), not concerned about popularity (see Claire in The Breakfast Club). To be completely honest, I'd say Sloane Peterson cared little about anything. And that's what I loved about her the most. Maybe it was her effortless-ness and confidence that captured me, her calm collectedness in the face of danger of being caught out, clearly not feeling guilty about cutting class and going along with Ferris' crazy schemes. 

And don't get me started on her style. While she only wore one outfit for the entirety of the film, I dare say she would have become an instant style icon for the young women of her generation (and for those in the future). Looking like a private school boy from the waist down (grey culottes and knee high socks), layering sweatshirt over sweatshirt waist up, Sloane completes her effortless minimal cool look with black sunglasses, a leather cross body bag (because who needs excess baggage when you're gallivanting around the city) and naturally beautiful just woke up hair. How can I forget the classic fringe leather jacket with huge shoulder pads and how she manages to not make herself look like the a country music popstar? If Sloane lived in the present day, I think she'd get along quite well with Mary Kate and Ashley

Apologies for being MIA a little longer than initially anticipated, not long until the light at the end of the tunnel in seven days.

proenza schouler resort 2013.

I've been in a bit of a slump lately with end of semester assignments and exams causing me massive stress and a severe lack of inspiration and motivation. It's nice to know I've been somewhat missed in the bloggersphere/ twitterverse, thank you to anyone who has noticed my lack of activity on the blog and made sure I hadn't dropped off the face of the planet. During this time, I've redirected any energy left from uni, work and sleep deprivation towards exploring new and old music tastes on Spotify and reblogging the hell out of Tumblr. 

In the midst of all this, I finally found my burst of inspiration in the Proenza Schouler Resort 2013 lookbook which happened to show up on my Tumblr dashboard. After reblogging three pictures and like-ing a handful of others, I realised my fondness for this collection was better suited to share on my blog. I haven't quite figured out what's so 'resort' about this collection, (in my eyes it's more ready to wear) but when you admire something so much, you wouldn't dare question its creativity. The Proenza boys (as I like to call them) said they were focused on "creating product: wearable, saleable clothes that girls want." It's fair to say they've succeeded in fulfilling their mission statement for this collection. The relaxed, boxy cuts of the jackets and coats, the slouchy pants and boyfriend jeans, the tailored leather pieces and the neon tweed (can't get over the ingenuity of the neon tweed) is everything I could ever want right now given my current mood and the weather. 

Long story short. I'm back.