Designer profile: Tluxe

Late last month I had the pleasure of chatting with Rebecca Powell, the designer and founder of Tluxe, perhaps the most successful Australian label you have never heard of! Tluxe is essentially my wardrobe philosophy personified in a brand so I jumped at the opportunity to ask Rebecca some questions about her brand and business and take some shots of her new, and first, flagship store.#17 - Tluxe - styling and photography by catherine and grace - copyright 2014#23 - Tluxe - styling and photography by catherine and grace - copyright 2014Regular readers will know I love creative Australians and I love supporting local businesses. While Rebecca is London-born she has been in Australia for many years, so we can claim her as our own. Most importantly, however, Tluxe is entirely produced by highly skilled artisans in Australia. Keeping these skills in Australia is so important and I love that Rebecca is passionate about finding the right people in Australia to do the work, rather than outsourcing simply to increase profits. She is devoted to keeping rag-trade skills in Australia and keeping our home-grown fashion industry alive.#19 - Tluxe - styling and photography by catherine and grace - copyright 2014#03 - Tluxe - styling and photography by catherine and grace - copyright 2014#05 - Tluxe - styling and photography by catherine and grace - copyright 2014Rebecca trained in some of the world’s most successful corporate fashion brands, including Topshop and Bonds. However, after 20 years in the industry, now with children and a long commute, she flirted with the decision to run her own business and develop her long-held desire to design for her own label. The final catalyst? The simple t-shirt. Rebecca couldn’t find, in Australia, a simple t-shirt with the right length sleeve, neckline and made of a material that she loved. And so Tluxe was born; very organically, literally from the kitchen table – the pattern for their best-selling t-shirt was made on Rebecca’s table.#14 - Tluxe - styling and photography by catherine and grace - copyright 2014#06 - Tluxe - styling and photography by catherine and grace - copyright 2014#01 - Tluxe - styling and photography by catherine and grace - copyright 2014#11 - Tluxe - styling and photography by catherine and grace - copyright 2014Tluxe prides itself on using only ethically sourced, sustainable yarns and I asked Rebecca about the challenges she faces maintaining this honorable, yet potentially difficult, stance. She disclosed that finding 100% natural fabrics was the first difficulty. According to Rebecca there are very few knits that are made of 100% natural fabric – most have 10% nylon or another synthetic to stabilise the material. Producing in Australia also limits the fabrics and yarns available. However, Rebecca is undeterred – at its heart Tluxe is a basics brand so Rebecca is happy to produce beautifully made, simple pieces, in a limited range of fabrications that will stay in your wardrobe for many years to come. Speaking to Rebecca you get a sense that she wants to educate the public about the need to spend a little more on a quality piece, and perhaps just have one or two t-shirts in your wardrobe, rather than a pile of cheap alternatives. I love this idea and her philosophy certainly resonates with me – I have been reducing my wardrobe slowly over the last few months {watch this space, I’m sure I’ll want to share with you the results in due course} to quality basics in black, white and grey and a few “party pieces”. For those wanting to do the same, Tluxe should be your first stop for stylish staples.#09 - Tluxe - styling and photography by catherine and grace - copyright 2014#18 - Tluxe - styling and photography by catherine and grace - copyright 2014So with almost 50 stockists across Australia and online, why a flagship boutique now, especially during such a difficult time in Australian retail? Rebecca believes, and I tend to agree with her – despite my online shopping addiction, that the experience of shopping in a bricks and mortar store, especially in a village environment, gives value to a brand. A boutique offers customers an experience that really can’t be replicated by an online store. The new cafes, bakeries, bars and boutiques opening drew Rebecca to The Intersection in Paddington {corner of Glenmore Road and Oxford Street – Tluxe is slightly up Oxford Street when walking away from the city}. The area has become a shopping destination with a diverse cross-section of Australia’s hottest labels nearby; many with similar sensibilities to Rebecca and the desire to support Australian made.#15 - Tluxe - styling and photography by catherine and grace - copyright 2014#25 - Tluxe - styling and photography by catherine and grace - copyright 2014#21 - Tluxe - styling and photography by catherine and grace - copyright 2014Rebecca also finds it useful to be in-store, obtaining first hand feedback from her customers about her products in real-time. Overheard concerns about design can lead to tweaks to the rage to further satisfy the needs of her customers. Rebecca firmly desires to make products people actually want to buy – seems very sensible to me!#08 - Tluxe - styling and photography by catherine and grace - copyright 2014#16 - Tluxe - styling and photography by catherine and grace - copyright 2014Tluxe pieces are easy to wear, with soft jersey cottons in a timeless palette. The busier your life gets the calmer you want your wardrobe to be and the pieces in-store certainly meet that brief. Less is more – as Rebecca noted “Tluxe is not a trend based brand, it is a lifestyle based brand”.

Every piece can be thrown in the washing machine with the Tluxe team Rebecca pre-washing fabrics and testing shrinkage before garments go into full production.#10 - Tluxe - styling and photography by catherine and grace - copyright 2014

So who is Tluxe’s customer? Generally 35-60 year olds, incredibly stylish women, many with kids and jobs and busy lives, as well as the young set looking for an easy tee to wear over a black bra with skinny leather leggings.

Finally, where next for Tluxe? Rebecca would love to open more boutiques, most likely in places with a village feel, offering a destination aimed at shoppers. However it is one step at a time for this busy mama as she looks forward to the official opening of her first flagship next Thursday evening.#24 - Tluxe - styling and photography by catherine and grace - copyright 2014

xx Catherine JPEG

4 Comments on “Designer profile: Tluxe

  1. The store is gorgeous!! I want to raid it in person – wish I could fly over to australia today!! 😉 ❤
    thesartorialcoquette.com

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