Guest editor for a week: Amanda Fox
I always knew I wanted to do something different. I grew up in Perth, Western Australia where shops were never open on a Sunday, being barefoot was the norm and the outdoors was everything.
Moving through school, I loved English literature, media and art. That was about it. I struggled concentrating on anything that required the left side of my brain. In year 12 I studied TEE art and majored in textiles. I screen printed, embroided, sewed and embellished my way through the year to escape the realities of final year exams.
Applying for university was a hard choice – to be grown up and study something that would get me a job in the ‘mining state’ or study something I actually enjoyed?
I decided on a Bachelor of Marketing and the Media, a combination of Commerce and Humanities. I did everything from statistics and accounting through to image literacy, advertising and psychology.
I completed my degree in 3 years and started looking for a job. I began in mining, went to ESL, FMCG, telco and ended up in textiles.
It took me 10 years to find the courage to start my own label.
Dames & Divas was born from the allure and mystery of Japan combined with an innate love of vintage accessories. Running my own boutique vintage jewellery business for a year while working as a Product Manger in textiles I thought it was time to put my skills and knowledge into something beautiful and different. Vintage kimonos are so inspiring. Each one tells a story and they are so lovely to work with.
Dames & Divas was born in April 2009. It came from the need for one of a kind, handcrafted accessories that were colourful, unique and had a story. The label started with two items – A Wedge and A Bangle Bag.
In 2009 we re-located to Melbourne, the fashion capital of Australia and that’s when it all started.