With the new Winter 2016 season now in full swing, Veronika Maine Brand Director, Gill Vadgama, discusses how pushing the boundaries of design and speaking to new audiences keep the Veronika Maine brand in a state of constant evolution.
Gill in the Veronika Maine headquarters.
What was the starting point for the Veronika Maine Winter 2016 collection?
Having a luxurious and timeless feel to our collections is key, so each season we start with fabrics and colours. For Winter 2016 it is all about luxe knits, bonded fabrics and fluid Japanese crepes.
Our product styling is much more of an evolution than a revolution, with new tie details, gold buttons and giant eyelets to give a subtle twist to an effortless collection.
How long does it take to pull the collection together? And how does that process work?
The design process will commence with my briefing the designers on the key looks for the season. I think it’s really important to allow our design team creative freedom as they work on the looks for the season, so the strength of the product direction and branding shines through.
About 30 to 40 styles will go into our pattern room; these styles will evolve during the production process and many will be cut to ensure we have the best edit possible that speaks back to the direction for the season.
Once the collection is ready for the campaign, I will meet with our stylist to give her an overview of where we are coming from for the season, and again allow her the freedom to style the collection as she sees it. Collaboration is key, and as each person touches the collection they have a unique and individual take on how they see it. This is what makes the end result of the campaign so special.
The Veronika Maine Design Room.
How do the core values of the Veronika Maine brand inform the design process?
Clothes have to work much harder than before; it’s very rare that our customer will buy something just for one event, which is why we place greater emphasis on cut and quality fabrics.
A wardrobe needs to work all day. I will always ask our design team: Where is our customer going to wear this? How many times can she wear it? Does it flatter the body? A great piece of clothing is more than just a sketch on a piece of paper, it has to translate three dimensionally as well as working within the constraints of price, wearability and longevity.
If the designs don’t meet these criteria then they won’t make it into production. Our design team work very closely with our talented team of patternmakers, and this relationship is integral to success of our designs becoming reality.
The collection has a minimalist tone, from the use of fabrics to the hardware finishes. What was the vision behind this?
Detail is pared down to reveal the bare and beautiful bones of the pieces – the look is flattering and functional with a focus on shape and fabric to create enduring pieces for every occasion that transcend the seasons.
Simple yet beautiful structured shapes exude modernity and classic style in a deliberately neutral colour palette of black, white and grey to highlight uncomplicated forms and sculptured tactile tailoring.
The Veronika Maine Design Room.
There is quite a lot of layering in the campaign styling. How important is a versatile wardrobe in the Australian climate?
Layering provides such great styling options depending on the climate, and most of the fabrics we use will work throughout the year. It’s also about being able to adapt to your different styling needs and the environment you’re dressing for, be it the street, the office or home. As I said earlier, a wardrobe needs to work all day and be able to suit different moods. It’s about building an ensemble wardrobe that also makes sense as individual pieces once it’s broken down.
The campaign was shot in Bombo Quarry, Kiama. How does this dramatic landscape set the mood for the collection and the season ahead?
I briefed our Art Director, Chris, on the silhouettes and colour palette for the season and he used that to find the spectacular setting for our campaign. Shot on location in Bombo Quarry, Kiama, the landscape plays a dramatic contrast to the strong minimalist tone of the clothing.
The Veronika Maine Winter 2016 campaign, Bombo Quarry, Kiama NSW.
What are your must-have pieces this season?
Caption: Gill wears the Wrap Jumpsuit.
I have so many favourites, but will ultimately go for versatile styles like our Wrap Jumpsuit, which can be layered underneath a satin camisole or a turtleneck during the cooler months.
Our Tie Back Dress is also perfect for the same reason, and can be easily dressed up or down.
My new winter coat will be the Long Eyelet Vest; the black and khaki combination is divine, plus it’s perfect for layering. I’ll be wearing mine with a fine knit underneath.
And finally, our Tuxedo Jacket and Cuffed Flared Pants. Crafted from Japanese triacetate (which doesn’t crease, and will last forever if cared for properly), these wardrobe staples can be worn together, or dressed up and down.
Whatever your style, remember with fashion there are no rules; just wear what makes you feel good.
Shop the Veronika Maine Winter 2016 campaign now.