Gold Coast local Isabelle Quinn is making her mark on the Australian fashion industry. Having showcased her work at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia to having her designs worn by top influencers, you could say Isabelle is one to watch. Since we love shining the spotlight on GC locals, we had to include this talented lady in our series! Hopefully you take something out of this interview and score the inspiration you need to take the next step in your own career. What are you waiting for? You can get to know Isabelle below: 

Did you always know you wanted to be in the fashion industry?

Actually, no. I think the first job I ever wanted when I was a kid was to be a geologist and I went to uni to become an accountant - I soon found I hated numbers and moved into something more creative, which was marketing and digital marketing. This really built a strong foundation for my business. Although, I had a really creative childhood. My mum is an artist and can sew, so we would make clothes, draw and paint. I guess this built the foundations for me. As a kid, I used to make perfume from flowers in our garden and sell them for 20 cents. So you could say I've always been into retail from a very young age.

You’ve had influencers like Sydney Fashion Blogger, Elle Ferguson and Amanda Shadforth wear your designs – could you have imaged you’d receive that kind of exposure & appreciation for the brand when you started?

Definitely not! It’s the most exciting feeling when someone you really look up to and idolise wears your designs. It’s even better seeing how they have put their own twist and style with it too!  

For someone who is new to Isabelle Quinn, how would you describe your designs in 3 words?

Cool, risqué and liberated.

What has been your best-selling piece so far?

My Elsa Wrap Dress. It’s a long sleeve silk wrap dress with over-exaggerated cuffs and balloon sleeves. It looks banging on any girl!  

What’s an average day like for you?

Most days, I start by training - I think makes you so much more productive. I get home, eat and get stuck into the day! My mum helps out a lot and my assistant. I have a few interns also. So it gets pretty busy in the office.

I run over emails, orders, social media tactics and marketing (this is critical for sales). I deal with wholesalers, consulting with my factories in Indonesia and Hong Kong. And of course the most important thing is researching, designing and mood boarding for future collections. The list really is endless.  

Stars and sheer pieces seem to be a heavy focus in your Resort 18 collection. Where did your inspiration come from for this particular collection?

Throughout Anais my star obsession grew and grew and grew! I got the inspiration while fabric sourcing, and I came across this gorgeous sequin and glass beading star fabric overseas. From there I wanted everything to kind of clash so that it worked together - if that makes any sense. I did my very first print which consisted of stars and played with contrasting leather star pieces on top of other coloured leather. The collection turned out to be super fun and wearable. I wanted it to be a whimsical collection.

With almost 20k followers on social media, it’s evident you have a loyal following! What would you say is your greatest achievement to date?

There’s two! I think recently getting published on & showcasing at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia as one of the Next Generation designers. Both were massive goals ticked off the list.

What advice would you give a fellow Gold Coast girl on how to be proactive in their chosen career?

Persistence is key. Just keep going and going and don’t give up. There’s always times when it’s going to be hard and tough, but push through it. Email, call, be in people’s faces and you eventually will be noticed. And be passionate about what you do. Success will come naturally.

Fast 5:

Where’s your favourite place to shop on the GC?

Soho Girl at Sanctuary Cove or Janine Edwards at Pacific Fair.

What would we find you doing on the weekend?

Working, eating and socialising.

Favourite place to eat on the GC?

Sparrow or Gemelli

What’s your favourite style in your Resort 18 collection?

My Estelle Midi dress is such a classic complimentary slip for any woman.

What can we expect from Isabelle Quinn in 2018?

Working hard on expanding Isabelle Quinn into a international market and releasing more designs to keep up with demand.

Clare Marshall