As a mentor, you hope to impart, guide, support, and share your expertise and experience with your student. It’s a short-cut process really for the student in what can otherwise be a journey of trials and tribulations, speed humps and frustrations along with the occasional “win”.
Quite often, you’ll find that you’ve had very similar situations that your mentee is experiencing and it feels totally liberating to suggest the easier and probably the more successful option to an eager and creative soul.
Meet Sarah Gregory. Sarah and I have been working together through the AICD Fashion Business Mentoring Program for about 6 months now.
It was easy to connect with Sarah on many levels from a mentoring point of view. One of the most important qualities for a student is to be coachable. Sarah, with her fashion industry background, knew the importance of being open to considering new approaches and input to expedite her fashion dreams.
After completing a four-year Fashion Design Degree and several years working in the fashion industry, Sarah took a break, traveled, toyed with other work opportunities but the idea of creating and establishing her own label had been a constant for many years. Always drawing designs and making clothes for herself and her friends, it seemed such a natural progression to launch her own label, but when and how?
A stint in retail, however, solidified Sarah’s desire “to own her own boutique” and soon after the label Jessie June was born.
The name Jessie June is a gorgeous combination of her mother and grandmother’s first names. The label’s designs embrace the feminine, female shape, with inspiration taken from past beauties of the 60’s and 70’s like Brigette Bardot and her own maternal heritage.
The core of Sarah’s vision is to “provide luxurious fashion from sustainable and ethical sources”. Throughout her range development, Sarah sourced sustainable and organic fabrics and researched ethically sound manufacturers both locally and overseas.
Jessie June reflects this beautifully, with re-purposed or recycled materials, organic silks, cotton and bamboo dominating Sarah’s first range. Hands on to a tee, Sarah hand-dyes her organic bamboo/cotton blend dresses in saffron, indigo or beetroot.
Sarah’s fashion future is now looking very bright as she builds her label into a well-recognised resort/trans-seasonal staple for her loyal customers building upon her strong brand identity and adding to her sustainable mix of fabrics and designs.
Keeping true to her beliefs, Sarah is also looking to collaborate with like-minded environmentally conscious designers in opening a unique retail space to support and promote their brands.
What’s more, through the promotion of eco-efficiency, transparent manufacturing processes, waste management and recycling initiatives, Jessie June aims to be a zero-waste label that shines a spotlight on the importance of caring for the planet.
So much to love about Jessie June and it’s creator Sarah Gregory. Dare I say watch this space!