As the end of the year draws near I reflect on what has been an eventful year relaunching my accessories label, reconnecting with my wonderful customers and stores; I’ve made amazing new connections and learnt a lot about what drives my creative passion.
Thirteen years ago or so, my husband and I got dreaming over a cup of tea about bringing together our combined love of dance, theatre, fashion and textiles. Fast forward to just a few years ago when I met photographer Paolo Benini. Paolo and I were discussing the idea of working together, and the first thing that came to mind was this concept! Then when the opportunity arose to be a part of Melbourne Fashion Week 2018 it all unravelled into reality in only a matter of weeks.
I've been working on a new range of Shibori dyed silk scarfs for summer. Shibori technique dates from 8th century Japan and involves shaping and securing cloth, before dyeing it. There are many different forms of Shibori. There are techniques that involve folding, crumpling, stitching, plaiting, plucking and twisting.
Those who know me know that I have a love of thread and the endless possibilities that it affords; from holding your garments together to the most amazing fiber arts. So it comes as no surprise that I love the thready poetry woven by the fabulous Sheila Hicks.Sheila Hicks has been a pioneer in the fiber arts for over 50 years, spending each of those glorious years surrounded by cones of thread!
With the arrival of winter, these icy mornings, early dark nights and dreary days, I like to regenerate my inspiration and take it straight to my winter wardrobe! For me, the best part of winter is the way you can get more creative with your style. You can layer, mix and match, play with texture, or take advantage of old basics that can be re-worked into something fresh.
You may have noticed a shift in fashion influences of late, there’s an influx of fashion-savvy woman aged 40+ who are challenging the out-dated notion that as you age you can’t stay stylish!
With social media at the forefront of the fashion world it’s these types of influencers who are humanising platforms like Instagram and offering a point of view from a group of fashion enthusiasts who have otherwise been overlooked!
Being a mum is messy, not just standing on Lego in bare feet kind of messy, but a thousand things running through your mind messy. It’s holding and juggling all the elements of your family’s daily life in your mind and making magic so that somehow everything ends up running smoothly. Relaunching Belinda Pieris was a creative gift to myself; it makes life much crazier, but when I sit down with a paint brush in my hand, I have found myself again. Over the years I have received many wonderful testimonials from customers, I love hearing about the lives my designs take on. I particularly love hearing stories from mum's, they often make me giggle and as it’s mother’s day this week I thought I would share with you an excerpt from a wonderful email I recently received from a customer.
The National Gallery of Victoria has been a focal point in the story of my life. As a child I have memories of lying on the floor of the great hall and looking up at the ceiling by Leonard French, of running my hand across the water window with the smell of chlorine in the air and of being told not to touch anything and to speak quietly in this temple of reverence! As the NGV is so dear to me, I am so very excited to have my designs sold in the NGV design store this month. The NGV is showcasing my Waratah Squire Wallet in Licorice-Carmine and my Waratah Slimline Wallet in Licorice.
Nature is an endless source of inspiration. My eye is always drawn to its fluid lines, web like structures and intricate textures.
One of the most fascinating examples of nature’s bold beauty, lies beneath the waves. A place where coral architecture plays home to spectacular texture and colour. Alien like bulbous jewels glisten; where luminescent scales flash past; waves breathe life into blades of sea grass, and where you discover colours in the most slanderous combinations.
Starting with a secondhand 20th Century Modern table and chairs gifted to my husband, and inspired by the TV series MAD MEN; a love of 20th Centry design has infused its way into my home décor and now inspired my latest embroidery for the ‘Retro Squire Wallet’.
Designing embroideries is such an inspiring process. A process that for me can include becoming totally immersed in a particular style or aesthetic. This can be by exploring different textures, colour combinations, or spotting eye-catching patterns that have design potential.
All experiences shape us, and the skills I acquired in pursuit of my youthful passion for dance has never left me. Over the past year I have been particularly inspired by the beautiful photography of Ken Browar and Deborah Ory a.k.a. the NYC Dance Project. The flow of fabric, the movement caught and frozen in time, the jewel like colours, the light and shadow enhancing and capturing the artistry of these amazing, dedicated dancers. This inspiration is reflected in the colour pallet for my Winter Collection.
The last few weeks I’ve been hitting the road to visit the coolest shops and gallery spaces that will be showing my latest collection. Taking in the Victorian countryside on my way to Kyneton I stopped to capture the landscape. The yellow grass bleached by the sun, diverged by a vibrant blue sky. It wasn’t hard to get distracted on my journey! Introducing our newest stockist; the Stockroom. Well worth the drive, this retail and gallery space is located in the beautiful Kyneton Victoria and houses the works of cutting edge Australian artists and designers.