Season after season, denim forms an integral part of our everyday wardrobe.
A perennial favourite, it’s versatile, reliable and extremely wearable – not only on weekends but for more dressed up looks too. Here Ann-Marie, Country Road's womenswear designer for denim, tells us how she updated their new collection.
This season denim is about reworking favourite pieces with style updates, can you describe the process that went into designing this collection?
We started seeing a movement in fashion-driven denim on both the catwalks and the blogs were inspired by the newness coming through.
We noticed that we all own about ten pairs of jeans but that they are all jeggings, so we decided to look beyond the jegging and started exploring the idea of pushing our denim in new directions.
I sketched a few different ideas around the new wash techniques we were seeing and around the idea of traditional denim in untraditional pieces.
Almost everybody owns at least one pair of jeans, how do you go about creating fits people will love to wear?
A lot of work and consideration is put into creating these styles, it’s really tricky.
From the initial sketch our fabric tech Amanda and I work closely with our mills to source the right denim base to suit the style – does it need stretch, what ounce, which dye cast?
From there my design assistant CC and I begin the experimenting process with our wash house and explore the different shades and techniques we can achieve. And then it all comes together with our garment tech Gabby who meticulously works on the measures and patterns in our fit sessions.
What’s your all-time favourite thing about working with denim?
I really enjoy working on product that requires attention to detail, but mostly I admire the tremendous skill of the denim factory technicians, the amount of labour and knowledge required is unbelievable.
Favourite piece: My favourite piece is the dark indigo dress, it’s easy to wear and just plain cool.
Favourite denim style tip: Denim is massive at the moment, embrace it and wear it your own way. Double denim does look pretty amazing.
When did you first know you wanted to be a designer, and what path did you take to get here?
I wanted to be a designer ever since I was a little kid, I was just mad over clothes and love to draw.
I use to make my dolls these awful clothes on my strawberry shortcake sewing machine.
Both my parents and grandparents had great style and would always make an effort and I think that rubbed off, my sister became a designer too.
I started my path studying Fashion Design at RMIT which was incredibly demanding but I learnt so much. After finishing uni it took me years to get my foot in the door, it was really difficult.
I would always get nervous in interviews so I decided to intern to help get some experience behind me, and it eventually worked.
What can we look forward to in the upcoming seasons?
We have this beautiful ice blue story coming up in September, I’m really looking forward to wearing it.