A design on success
9 September 2009,
It takes a special motivation to take on the big guns of the fashion industry. But this month’s Emerging Business Excellence Award winner Leah Madden is testimony that creativity pays with her range of ‘sexy, fun, fashionable and savvy’ resort and swimwear line White Sands. With negotiations under way with major multinational retailers, Madden says it won’t be long until the label starts appearing on beaches around the world.
With summer collections now being launched, how is White Sands being received on the fashion circuit?
With escalating manufacturing costs in Australia, how much of the brand is developed overseas?
What is appealing about basing a business on the Gold Coast?
How many distributors do you have domestically? Are you getting interest from multinational retailers?
How integral to your success was breaking into David Jones?
People realise that if a store like David Jones is interested, then our quality and designs must be exemplary. Stores like David Jones are stringent about quality control and only take the best, you can’t cheat with quality.
How difficult was it to crack the market and compete with the established major labels?
Sure, you can do the right things to get the product seen, but you can’t make anyone buy it. Showing at Fashion Week is an expense, but being invited is something you can’t pay for and the credibility that brings means a lot.
It shows that my designs are what people want, or we wouldn’t have the number of orders we do.