FK chats to Melinda, from Sydney based fashion label Roger + Peach.
Tell us a little about your sweet label, Roger + Peach.
Roger + Peach is a small handmade women’s wear and accessories label of the girly, cute and feminine variety that has been brought into existence slowly but surely by myself. It was originally dreamt up by three friends (myself and my 2 besties at the time) in a dusty lounge room when we were young and naive or vivacious and enthusiastic which is how I like to think of it. We were going to Start Roger + Peach and take over the world from what I remember! I then stuck with the name because it had history (Roger dodger was my car’s name and Mama peachy was my besties car’s name and that’s how we came up with the name) And over time R+P’s aesthetic silently evolved and it is what it is today.
What is your creative background and how did it lead you to where you are now?
I had always been the creative type. After studying Certificate 4 in Design at TAFE I thought I wanted to be an Interior Designer and fashion didn’t really register on my radar. Not long after I had finished this course I got a job at a well know fabric store in the dress department which meant spending many a day dreaming up what lovely garments I could whip together with all the beautiful fabrics surrounding me. It was only then that it finally clicked that fashion was what I wanted to do. I studied an advanced Diploma in Fashion Design and after deciding to leave the course early I rented some studio space. 2 years later, along with lots of learning, lots of mistakes and finally getting my act together to hold weekly market stalls at Glebe and Bondi I have been able to quit my day job and become a fully self employed fashion designer.
What do you find the most challenging about running your label?
Because I am a one woman show I am the accountant, the book keeper, the web designer, the marketing director, creative director, designer, graphic designer, pattern maker, seamstress, quality control officer and sales girl amongst other things which at times becomes very over whelming. This in turn makes organising myself tricky sometimes as I often feel like I need to be doing 20 things at the same time.
I also find it challenging to know when to stop. My partner has banned me from bringing any work home because this is the only time we get to see each other so those few hours every evening we have together have become precious. I am definitely getting better at all the above which is a positive thing and in saying all that, the benefits and pay off’s of running your own business far out way the challenges.
What other creative hobbies do you have?
To be honest I don’t have any other creative hobbies because at this point in time Roger + Peach is a 7 day a week business. Although I do devour magazines at an alarming rate… does that count?!
What are you inspired by at the moment and how does that translate into your range?
At the moment I am working on my summer collection for the markets. This is inspired by water color floral’s which basically translates into pretty colours like peach, Tiffany blue, corals, citrus yellows along with soft flowers like poppies & peonies. This will be translated into soft floaty silk and cotton dresses, skirts and tops that will be screen printed with floral imagery and lots of accessories that combine techniques such as crochet and beading.
What are your dreams for Roger & Peach in the future?
The ultimate dream for Roger + Peach would be to open up a shop stocking not only my range but also supporting local and national designers. All of my stockists have been very supportive and understanding and I in turn would like to be able to return the favour one day to them and to also give small emerging labels the leg up that I have received again and again.