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Blog posts tagged with 'India'

Behind the love of fate

Meaning 'Love of One's Fate', Amor Fati is a Latin phrase that describes an attitude in which we can embrace everything that happens in life - and feel content with our reality. 

The concept has been used by philosophers such as Epictetus, Marcus Aurelius - and Friedrich Nietzsche, who wrote:

"I want to learn more and more to see as beautiful what is necessary in things; then I shall be one of those who make things beautiful. Amor fati: let that be my love henceforth! I do not want to wage war against what is ugly. I do not want to accuse; I do not even want to accuse those who accuse. Looking away shall be my only negotiation. And all in all and on the whole: some day I wish to be only a Yes-sayer."    

Filled with rich shades of saffron and turmeric, alongside modern digital prints, the collection was inspired by 10 days I spent ‘off the grid’ in a remote desert on the Indian/Pakistan border earlier this year.

In search of inspiration, focus and the creative magic one gets when travelling on your own and exposing yourself to the "NEW", I wanted to experience that feeling of trusting in the unknown , trusting in discovering somewhere new and meeting people from a culture totally different from my own, taking me completely out of my comfort zone and forcing me out of the lifestyle that most of us lead on a day to day basis; where little is left to chance. I chose a desert in the far west of Gujarat; landing in a tiny cessna plane, I was the only caucasian Australian woman there.

Living in clay huts with subsistence farmers and loomers, I spent the days learning about the region's rich textile, spice and jewel trade history. Fascinating, arid and isolated, the journey crystallised my inspiration for this collection. At one point when I was standing in the middle of the Indian desert my memory took me back to when I was 16 and climbing Uluru, there was a moment of timelessness - and total connection to something bigger. 

The prints featured in this collection are digital recreations of ancient rugs and artefacts that I traded with the herders who were living off the desert land - they are strikingly beautiful and my interperation of the journey I took through the desert and walked a path less travelled. Back in Brisbane I collaborated again with acclaimed artist Claudia Husband, who brought the traditional patterns, weaves and embroidery to life in the collection, via digital format. 

I took home a great respect of the role fate plays in our lives, and an appreciation of what can happen when fear is replaced by faith and trust - and knowing that we can be safe walking into the abyss. Amor faiti

Every year before the Mercedes Benz Fashion Festival, we photograph the collection that will appear on the runway. And so for this year's shoot, it was no surprise that our photographer, Sam Thies, chose to lead us across expansive countryside to a vast lakeside property to capture the campaign images with Dallys model Samantha Cannon. Breathtakingly beautiful and quintessentially Australian, the location was literally on the other side of the earth to where the seed of inspiration for this collection had been planted, but also somehow conveyed the sense of vastness, and completeness, that we have when we are connected to our surroundings.

I can't wait to share the collection at Mercedes Benz Fashion Festival in only a few weeks!  

Samantha Cannon, Liz Sharp and Sam Thies photo shoot Brisbane

Sam Thies photographer and Samantha Cannon Dallys models

Tengdahl fashion shoot Ines site set up

Sam Thies fashion photo shoot Sam Cannon Dallys models

Samantha Cannon model Dallys Tengdahl fashion shoot

Julie Tengdahl Brisbane fashion designer spring summer Mercedes Benz Fashion Festival collection

Ines Schumann (assistant), Julie Tengdahl (fashion designer), Liz Sharp (styling & PR), Samantha Cannon (model), Sam Thies (photographer)

Artisan details

white wool jacket embroidered

designer jacket Australian made Tengdahl

           

Julie bought a series of beautiful artisan cashmere scarves while she was in Jaipur, India - each a peice of art featuring hand loomed embroidery in vibrant colours.

Our workroom manager, Heather, has meticulously lifted the embroidery peices from the scarves and transfered them to our new A/W jacket, forming the detail on Julie's new Audrey weave jacket design. The embroidery injects vibrant colour, texture and shows how beautifully east and western design aesthetic can be merged.

Inspired by the classic Chanel jacket shape - with a modern twist through body-shaping side panels - the embroidered jacket is a limited edition peice, and each design is different as no two scarves are exactly the same. The jacket is available at our Emporium store for $829 (call 3257 0569) and can be purchased by phone and couriered overnight. 

Love, work and play

julie tengdahl australian fashion designer

Julie Tengdahl fashion designer luxury style

Whether you are embarking on your own journey of motherhood or you’re just planning to lavish your own mother with lots of love this weekend, mothers are a part of our history, biology and often have lots to teach us.

This month Emporium Connecte caught up with fashion designer, businesswoman and mother, Julie Tengdahl, to discuss career, motherhood and just how to juggle it all…

What do you love most about what you do?

After 30 years I still get a thrill from being on the shop floor; seeing how clients interact and respond to designs, and tailoring the collections to suit them. Whether I’m in the workroom sketching a design, or at one of the stores styling a client, the power of making a woman feel truly beautiful has never lost its joy for me. This career has offered me the chance to travel, meet amazing people and constantly channel my creativity into something tangible.

Why did you start in your industry?

My mother was a seamstress and some of my first memories are of playing beneath her sewing machine, collecting remnants of fabric. After school I studied fashion design at MSIT. I worked in fashion design in London and when I returned to Australia I took a job as an aerobics instructor while trying to establish myself in the Brisbane fashion industry. I noticed active wear at the time was boring so I created a range of sports wear for my aerobics class, and when sales took off, the range funded my first collection as a fashion designer.

You are a Mother, Business owner and a Woman, how do you fuse these roles together and maintain balance?

At work, I have adopted a business model that suits my ideal life balance. When I’m at home with family, I try to be present and accessible, while also encouraging their independence and autonomy. I’ve also surrounded myself with incredibly capable women who take my breath away with their balancing abilities. And I avoid burn-out by having time to myself occasionally; anything from a quick yoga session on the Kangaroo Point cliffs as the sun rises on a Sunday morning – through to an overseas sabbatical like the one I just completed in India. As a family we support each other through the ups and downs, and encourage each other to pursue whatever brings fulfilment and happiness as individuals. My relationships with each child has evolved as they’ve grown older, and now that my two eldest children are pursuing their own careers I love hearing their thoughts about the business, and drawing inspiration from their creative contributions to the label as well.

How has being a mother helped you in the way you run your business?

After having children I developed a more intuitive approach to designing and managing my business. I backed myself and trusted my ‘gut instinct’ more than I had before. My decisions are clearer, I am more efficient in my use of time and I have a better grasp of the big picture. I don’t dwell on the insignificant stuff that would have had me obsessing or stressing at work in the past. Rather than holding us back or making us complacent, I think this perspective actually makes it easier to take risks, because as long as your family are happy and healthy, there’s nothing much in life to fear. Fashion design can be very egocentric, very tense, so letting go of that fear has meant I’ve done things that I wouldn’t have otherwise done if I hadn’t relinquished the pressure I placed on ‘proving’ myself.

What is the most surprising thing you have discovered about yourself since becoming a mother?

A level of confidence that I never had before. Bravado and self-doubt was replaced by a deeper belief in myself. Motherhood highlights how little we know – and yet simultaneously how much we are capable of, and how much we have to offer our community.

What are your tips for women who are juggling career and motherhood?

It gets easier. Follow your intuition; both at work and at home. And let go of the expectation that life, motherhood, work, relationships are meant to be simultaneously perfect. Enjoy the crazy, ever-changing, imperfectness of it all.

What has been your proudest career achievement?

Keeping garment production in Brisbane. The label is still produced in our West End workroom, by local dressmakers and machinists. The financial cost of producing locally is outweighed by the fact that it keeps jobs in the local fashion industry and enables me to be responsive to the feedback and needs of my clients. It also means I can retain high quality standards, have a quick turn around and stay in control of my supply chain - ensuring all garments and their materials are sourced and produced ethically. I am so proud that the label is still 100% Australian made.

Emporium logo fortitude valley brisbane luxury shopping Define your style…

My style has multiple personality disorder! I dress to reflect different aspects of my identity as a woman; some days it is feminine and elegant, other days it is practical and perfunctory – or sensual, bold and colourful. It always has to be effortless, comfortable, simple and thoughtfully designed!

Click here to read the full article. Republished with permission. 

Julie's India Journey

australian fashion designer Julie Tengdahl in India

Tengdahl Australia designer Julie in indiaJulie Tengdahl india sabbatical fashion designer Indian women fashion designer Julie tengdahl visit IndiaIndian textiles fabric australian fashion designer tengdahl

Last month I set off to India for a trip that has mixed business with a personal journey. I am currently writing from an Ashram in Jaipur. On the design front, I am here to meet with textile designers and organisations that provide local women with opportunities to use their traditional skills to have financial autonomy through fashion design and manufacturing. Amidst the terrible stories of slave labour and substandard working conditions that we have heard of recently, my Australian friends who work in India have urged me to come over and see the ‘other side’ of female-focused industries.

There is a growing awareness amongst organisations over here that they must provide women with opportunities to use their talents in a safe, fair and financially rewarding environment. While these businesses only comprise a small segment of the overall manufacturing industry, my hope is that with growing awareness in western countries, they can create a demand for ethically made textiles and garments.

If there is a demand for ethically produced fashion, and western businesses and consumers are willing to pay for it, the Indian industry will improve working conditions and remuneration in order to obtain the lucrative western contracts. Amongst some beautiful artisan pieces, I will be brining back some amazing fabric made by women in Bangalore, and cashmere shawls from the tribes of Rajasthan; known as ‘the land of Kings’. Each piece is unique - I can’t wait to share them.

TEngdahl Australia india fashion designer brisbane Yoga India yogi Julie Tengdahl brisbane fashion designer India Julie tengdahl brisbane australia fashion designer Julie Tengdahl ashram india brisbane women eat pray love

Between work meetings I have had the opportunity to see the other side of Indian life. My current stay in an Ashram has involved 4 hours of yoga each day, as well as chanting and meditation. Sheryas, another Ashram that I stayed at outside Bangalore, was like a scene from Eat Pray Love. Having just finished A/W and in the process of launching into preparations for the S/S range and Mercedes Benz Fashion Festival, this time has been an invaluable opportunity to switch off to the noise of everyday life and restore the energy that, as women, we constantly give to others.

Much has been written about the female sabbatical recently (both personal and professional types) and I’m glad it is moving past the typecast of self-indulgent western whim. Women are givers, carers, lovers and nurturers. But often, very little is left for them - until it’s too late. Emotional or mental breakdown, or physical illness, often present themselves. Sometimes we care too much about what others think; worried that we’ll seem selfish for taking a short time out for reflection or to nurture ourselves. While staying in a country filled with women who often have to fight for the right to education, fair employment, reproductive rights or the ability to just walk the street safely, we’re able to put our concerns of day-to-day life in perspective, while also appreciating how far women in many countries still have to fight on a grass roots level to achieve equality.

Most of all, India has shown me the magnificence of the female spirit; it’s ability to endure and love through adversity, to show strength and resilience while pushing boundaries and slowly but surely forcing our communities to cherish and value all we have to offer. With the support of their communities and the international community, the women in India have a future of prosperity and power. We can’t hide from the beauty of the world or the raw honesty of a country such as this. It’s visceral and captivating; provoking internal reflection, and external observation.

Julie xx