Designer Series

Designer Series: EP 03 – We Are Kindred

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Customer Happiness Team

December 28, 2017

We had the pleasure of hosting Australian fashion designer Lizzie Renkert, co-founder of We Are Kindred for a chat. In this interview, Lizzie tells us how she and her sister founded We Are Kindred, where they get their inspiration and her opinion about the fashion rental business.

We’ve read that you have an extensive background in editorial fashion. What motivated you to take the leap and start your own label?

Kindred’s very much about florals and actually started from when we were little girls. Our mum was really great at making our home beautiful and she didn’t necessarily have loads of money. She would update our house with floral cushions, curtains and lampshades and there were always fresh daisies in the house. We were really inspired by her and my home is certainly like that now.

Where do you find inspiration and how do you translate that into your designs?

We now know Who The Kindred Girl is, we know that she’s coming to us for those beautiful floral dresses and that’s how we actually start the design process. We work from prints first and then we move them into shapes, so every season comes to us quite seamlessly and naturally.

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Who is the We Are Kindred girl?

The Kindred girl doesn’t take herself too seriously, she doesn’t take fashion too seriously, has smile on her face, is nice to people, she’s friendly and when she’s wearing a kindred dress, it means that she’s going to be in a good mood that day. This is because when you’re having a good fashion day it’s like when you’re having a good hair day, everything is better.

At GlamCorner we like to refer to ourselves as a family, but what is it like to work with your sister Georgie?

Working with Georgie is amazing, I don’t think that there’s anyone else that I could do this with. We call ourselves We Are Kindred because we are kindred and we’re the best of friends. Sometimes we’ll have little disagreements but we agree on all of the big things that matter. So going to work is really enjoyable.

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What do you love most about owning a fashion business?

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We’ve got a tiny team, there are five of us and we’re really close. I think having an open communication, being positive and making sure that people who work for us feel appreciated and that they’re always learning, is really important. One of the things that Georgie and I both love about Kindred is the fact that we’re both learning every day too. We’ve launched a small business which is growing now, which is really rewarding and to have our team come along with us for the ride is awesome.

What does the next 5 years look like for We Are Kindred?

The business has grown relatively fast in the three years since we launched. We’re in 60 stores in Australia, we’re in Myer, The Iconic, overseas in Shopbop and we’ve just picked up Harvey Nichols in Dubai. So in five years’ time, I would like to think that we would have some incredible accounts on our hands, probably be showing in either New York or London for Fashion Week and hopefully have a bigger team. I hope that as the business grows, we make sure that we still control and are the custodians of the brand. I think lots of businesses grow too fast and you kind of get sucked in, but I actually really like the process of knowing exactly what’s going on in the business every step of the way.

What are your top tips for styling the perfect spring wedding look?

I think it’s really important when people are getting dressed for a wedding or for anything actually, that you choose one area to flaunt. if you’re going to show your bust you can’t show your legs, if you’re going to show your legs then you can’t show your bust. And there’s nothing wrong with wearing something a bit floaty. Not everything has to be bodycon.

I think it’s quite nice to dress suggestively like that. I also think you just need to keep accessories neutral, invest in a really great pair of nude shoes and have a great neutral handbag so your accessories don’t compete with your dress.

What are your thoughts on the fashion rental industry and what opportunities for your brand do you see in working with GlamCorner?

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We’re really happy to work with GlamCorner. I completely get it, the special occasion dressing where you might not need a full-length special gown in your wardrobe other than for the wedding that you’re going to in September so I completely understand that it’s a great service. From a business owner’s perspective it’s a way to sample brands and hopefully fall in love with them.

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