You’re originally from Germany; what was it that brought you to Australia & how did you get your start in fashion?
My decision to migrate to Australia was driven by the longing to live in a sunnier climate with a more laidback lifestyle. I studied Fashion Design at French Fashion College ESMOD and got started working in the industry in Munich before coming to Sydney to pursue my career further.
Talk to us about Tutu Du Monde, what’s the inspiration behind the brand & what lead you launch in this niche market?
Tutu du Monde was the product of my search for a ‘ballerina dress’ for my own little daughter – a then super fussy and girly four-year-old! Faced with market offerings of uninspired and uninspiring mass-produced pink polyester, I instinctively drew on my own design aesthetic and experience and decided to create my own tutus. That was how the brand was born and formally launched in 2009. What I initially considered a ‘side-project’ soon took over my life. It certainly wasn’t a conscious decision to find a niche market, I just stumbled upon it.
You’ve long had a relationship with Farage, having formed a mini collection of Tuxedo Jackets over the years; what is it about our brand that resonates with you?
I love Farage for their quality materials and exquisite tailoring and cuts. I often wear the tuxedo jackets with jeans or skirts and they immediately make me look business-like. They also travel extremely well. Even in my very full suitcases they always come out looking perfect on the other end.
I love the new women’s Femme collection for Tutu Du Monde; we’re excited to feature it our Martin Place Flagship for the festive season. What was the inspiration behind this collection and is there plans for further expansion in this category?
Thank you, we’re very excited! We simply had to finally add an offering for our stylish customers and the Tutu du Monde team who’ve been requesting skirts and capes for years. Everyone needs a Carrie Bradshaw moment in their life!
How would you describe your personal style?
My personal style is fairly uncomplicated to suit my busy lifestyle. Often jeans and pants, paired with either a tee shirt or blouse – depending on the occasion – and a sharp jacket. For special celebrations I might reach for one of our tulle skirts, either plain or embellished, paired with one of my Farage Tuxedo jackets so it doesn’t get too girly, which is not me.
You recently travelled to US with Joe & Katy Farage where you shot the collaboration together; talk to us about the trip and what was it that lead to the decision to shoot in LA?
I’ve had a bit of a love affair with LA for quite some time and feel very at home there. I was thrilled when Joe and Katy (and their kids) decided to join us on our work/family trip. Tutu du Monde regularly shoots campaigns in LA and we had several photo shoots lined up already so we simply added another one to the schedule. That was exciting for us as it features our women’s tulle skirts teamed back with Farage jackets and shirts.
What does a typical day at the office look like for you?
The most important part of my day starts early with exercise and coffee down at Bondi Beach before work. This creates mental space and calmness for me to face a fast-paced day ahead. Once I’m at work I often spend the first hours of my day liaising with partners and teams in the US while they’re in the office before their day ends due to the time difference. We work almost continuously throughout the year with our creative team in LA on shoot concepts, talent castings etc. - also with our US distributor as we have 5 collections per year. My real passion is the creative, for which I never have enough time, as part of my day also involves checking in with all other areas of the business; from Production and Wholesale to eComm and Marketing. Never enough hours in the day...
As the year draws to a close and we start to wind down for the holidays; have you had a chance to plan for 2020, what’s next for Andrea & Tutu Du Monde?
We have actually started designing Spring/Summer 21 which seems crazy, but because we work with the International tradeshow calendar, we simply have to work this far ahead. Our plan is to expand further into Russia and the Middle East and to aim for continued growth in China, which is our fastest growing market already.
WEEKENDS IN LA
Best Eat: Gracias Madre, Best Vegan Mexican
Best Drink: Goodness Greens vegan smoothie with blue algae protein, collagen, almond butter and banana (instant jetlag killer)
Best Kept Secret: Probably not so secret anymore but Palisades Village which is the perfect and most beautiful outdoor ‘shopping mall’; high end with plenty of favourites such as Jennifer Meyer, Anine Bing, Alo, Towne by Elise Walker and most importantly Alfred (an outpost of the BEST coffee shop in LA).
Tutu Du Monde Femme now available at 5 Martin Place