Can you introduce your brand and yourself?
G’day, my name is Moni and I’m an Aussie from Australia. I’m one of those girls who has always been very curvy and slightly overweight, but I have also always been daring and confident in my fashion choices. The older I’ve gotten, the heavier I’ve become but also become more confident in myself.
Fashion choices to suit my style had not been available so I was often custom making myself outfits and always getting complimented on them. I did my research and started my own label for the curvier ladies. I started designing for AUS size 12-20 but have recently expanded my size range to AUS size 10-22. Also trialing size 8 & 24 at the moment.
The woman who wears my label doesn’t necessarily have to be into fashion. Most of the pieces are effortlessly stylish and pair well with basics, which everyone already has.
Two things I love to bring into my designs are a flattering style and the sensory feel with luxurious feeling fabrics.
What sparked your interest in fashion design?
I’ve always had an interest in fashion, ever since I was a toddler and throughout my childhood I loved getting dressed up. I was always over dressed, wherever I went. In high school, sewing class was mandatory so that’s where I learnt to sew and I happened to be a natural at sewing and having a creative flare for design. In Year 11 our class was taken on a weekend excursion to the capital city of Sydney, where we visited some fashion houses and that’s where I fell in love and instantly knew that’s the career I wanted to pursue.
Can you describe your creative process?
I research current and upcoming trends, I go overseas to find fabrics I love, I come up with some designs I think are missing in the curvy market, I throw them altogether than add my own flare to it.
What is your favourite part of being a designer? What drives you to design?
My absolute favourite part of being a designer is when I go to markets and events to sell and get to see customer’s face just light up when they try on something they like and see how good they look.
The thing that drives me to design is both, the desire to fill a gap in the market for higher end curvy womenswear and also, my mind is just always drawn to fashion. I love watching the top, high end designer fashion shows, seeing what magic they’ve come up with. I know that designing is part of my purpose in life.
How do you find working as a designer where your brand is based? Has the culture/surroundings affected your design aesthetic? Do you feel connected to your home?
The culture and surroundings of where I’m based, definitely affects my design aesthetic, as I want to design clothing that Australians will wear. Weather, climate, location in terms of being coastal, rural, or city are also a huge influence as they all have their own individual culture too.
I don’t feel that connected to my home as I love to travel, even if it’s a few roadtrips here and there. I sign up to markets and events in different cities as an excuse to go for a roadtrip. I also love to travel overseas, but I do love having Sydney as my homebase and also love visiting my hometown, Canberra, where I was born and where my family still live.
In anticipation of your runway show at Vancouver Fashion Week, what are you most looking forward to?
I’m looking forward to accomplishing my first ever international runway show and getting the experience and lessons from that. Also, I’m looking forward to making new connections.
What is the inspiration behind your S/S20 collection to be showcased at Vancouver Fashion Week?
I’m still actually designing my collection and finalizing it! I don’t have a theme or anything, as it will be a mix of my collection from last year and new collection I’m designing especially for VFW. I am aiming for elegant and sophisticated, but sexy and unique at the same time.
What are you hoping are the reactions from audiences seeing your designs (perhaps for their first time)?
I’m hoping the reactions will be interested and impressed about how beautiful the designs are for curvy women because I’m planning to get some plus size models for my collection.
Thank you for speaking with us, Monica. We look forward to seeing your brand on the VFW runway.