Launching at Finders Keepers last Autumn/Winter was literally day one for Farn. Amanda pushed herself to put together a range in 7 months whilst graduating uni and never looked back! We are so thrilled to have Melbourne’s Amanda of Farn joining us in Brisbane. Her botanical prints are soaking up this sunshine and ready to be a part of your sustainable wardrobe! Get to know more about Amanda and how just how far Farn has come.
Finders Keepers was lucky enough to have Farn launch and debut at Finders Keepers AW18 with a stunning collection of bold patterns, flattering colour palettes and ageless silhouettes. Can you tell us a bit about your Finders Keepers experience so far, plus what Brisbane and Melbourne market goers can expect this season?
It has been an incredible ride so far! I remember receiving the acceptance email from Finders Keepers Melbourne for the Debut stall and I was overwhelmed with emotion, I knew it was the beginning of new journey for me. When I launched at the Finders Keepers AW18 in July it was literally day 1 for Farn, I didn’t have a website yet or any imagery so I had no idea what to expect.
Pushing myself to put a range together 7 months after graduating and choosing to launch at Finders Keepers is probably one of the best decisions I’ve ever made to date. I sold out of about half of my stock by Saturday afternoon and received some great and constructive feedback that I’ve been able to implement in my new range.
I’ll be launching Farn AW19 at Finders Keepers Brisbane in June and you can expect to see my signature bold take on Australiana hand printed onto linen, cotton and denim. The colour palette is quite Autumnal with shades of forrest green, terracotta among a sea of blues. There will be mostly transeasonal items that can be worn in Sunny Queensland or layered up with some merino base layers for Melbourne Finders Keepers in July.
All ranges now and forever, are designed, printed and made in Melbourne, why is that so important to Farn? Can you tell us about your sustainability approach to fashion?
Melbourne has an incredible community of small makers. I thought it was going to be my biggest challenge to find the right people and suppliers so it surprised me that it turned out to be one of the easiest things! I work with one screen printer and one machinist and we all work within a 1km radius of each other in Collingwood. I think that’s pretty special and something that’s uniquely woven into every Farn garment.
I produce just 2 ranges a year and everything is made in very small batches and only recut based on demand. Any offcuts from a production run are bundled up and resold to crafters around Australia, resulting in almost no waste. I’ve really enjoyed seeing how people are repurposing this ‘waste’ and giving it a new lease on life. So far I’ve seen scrunchies, bags, quilt patches, showers caps and most recently, I send a huge bundle to a school to make into beeswax wraps for a sustainability project!
How do you nurture your creativity? Who or what inspires you?
Being in the world! Always being open to inspiration. I often find it will strike at the strangest or unexpected of times. Sometimes it’s a colour combination I see or a dress I find in a Vintage store, I quite often find inspiration in the every-day.
I also work part-time at RMIT as a Print Technician on the Brunswick campus so I’m constantly stimulated by the endless print and colour possibilities!
I’ve started a daily practice which was really hard to find time for in the beginning but is really helping fuel my artistic practice. I actually have my first exhibition coming up in August, watch this space!
What do you love about being a maker and what is your design process?
I love getting to make my own rules and a big part of that is the fluidity of my design process. I’ve only just finished designing my print range for AW but I’m already starting to put together my palette and mood board for Summer. I try not to rely too heavily on trends to dictate my colour palette or silhouettes because I want every Farn piece to be timeless and I like that every new range flows easily into the one before it. I usually design the prints and range at the same time, so I can modify the colour palette and scale of prints accordingly.
Being a small maker means I can work very close to range release dates and be very agile in decision making which means you can really take on customer feedback at markets and immediately implement it to upcoming ranges.
What are you most looking forward to getting out of the upcoming Finders Keepers Brisbane and Melbourne markets!? Is there a local designer or maker you admire(from Brisbane and/or Melbourne)?
This will be my first interstate market for Finders Keepers in Brisbane so I’m pretty excited to meet some of my Queensland customers face to face! I was particularly stoked to find out that Claire Ritchie will be debuting at the Brisbane markets. I own a few of her pieces and absolutely love how she’s carved out this really personal style and colour palette that’s so immediately recognisable.