A freelance writer and father of two, I am interested in almost anything the ever-changing city of Brisbane has to offer. When I am not seeking the kid-friendly and affordable, I am tracking the home-grown and the unique... Come and discover with me!
Download to some fun and friendly Friday fashion face-time
Touch, talk and try it on at A LoveLeigh Party - Photo c/- Scott Colquhou 500px.com/themonk
Combine the contentment of Friday clock-off with a cutting-edge collection of home-grown handmade chic, add some nibblies and a dash of bubbly with your bestie, mix well in a low-key location filled with friendly faces, and voila!—a LoveLeigh Party has begun…
On Friday October 17 at 6:30pm, two of Brisbane's most exciting young freelance fashion designers—Leigh Parlby of LoveLeigh Designs and Jacqueline Claire of Jaclets—invite you to download to an undisclosed location for some fashion face-time of the strictly analogue kind.
Leigh and Jacqueline - Lovely ladies at the cutting edge of home-grown, handmade chic
This is not a sale—this is a pop-up circle of friends, featuring everything from flirtatious fascinators to figure-flattering finery with French flourishes. A crafty collaboration between two classy creatives of complementary character, A LoveLeigh Party was conceived as a free and funky fashion fiesta—but most importantly, as a gathering of like minds who love being one-of-a-kind.
A crafty collaboration between two complementary creators...
There'll be no pressure or performances, no speeches or special offers, just a wonderland of women's wearables and a chance to chat with a line-up of lovely ladies like you. You can walk away with an armload of amazing acquisitions, or simply imbibe some inspiration (along with a champers or three).
No pressure or performances, no speeches or special offers - just champers, chic and sharing the fun! Photo c/- Scott Colquhou 500px.com/themonk
October's LoveLeigh Party is an invite-only event, but it's only an easy email away. Just contact Leigh at email@example.com to receive your plus-one invitation; then you and a friend are on your way to a truly fabulous Friday. Don't be dismayed, though, if your dynamic duo becomes magnificent mono in the meantime—solo fashion flyers are just as welcome.
For your home-town hosts Leigh and Jacqueline, fashion is about feeling—never about following. Emotional response—perhaps evoked by the texture of a certain special fabric, or the changing colours of nature through the seasons—is the animating force behind the unique wearable artworks which have secured each of their home-grown labels a place in the hearts of women throughout Brisbane, and wherever their fast-growing online presences may reach.
Leigh's fashion accessories combine precision and classy femininity—a penchant she attributes to her Nanna, a sterling seamstress and award-winning Doll Dressmaker—with a touch of innate wildness, and a disdain for trends developed during teenage years spent at Op-Shops and 50-cent stores concocting outfits that soon became the envy of friends clad in far more expensive gear. Her guiding philosophy of design is that women look good when wearing what makes them feel good; and that a woman's wardrobe should be as amazing and unique as she is.
Designer Leigh Parlby - In the friendliest of fashions... Photo c/- Scott Colquhou 500px.com/themonk
Leigh's eerily-gifted fingers are capable of creating everything from necklaces and earrings to hats and purses; but her range of fascinators is nevertheless proving more and more to be the creative signature by which she is recognised. These "dreams on heads"—as Leigh's eldest daughter calls them—have provided the tantalising je ne sais quoi for no less than four winning outfits at Fashion On The Fields events as far away as Thailand.
Leigh and Jacqueline Claire - a creative combination born of a fashion friendship...
Jacqueline started her label, Jaclets, as a hobby in 2005. After some time doing small market stalls, she noticed that the simple love she had for creating her trademark tops was infectious. This writer was fortunate enough to be able to hear what happened next in Jacqueline's own words:
I had my baby in 2009; when he was in day care for a few days a week I thought I'd give my label a proper go. So I made a Facebook page and got into the Young Designers Market at Southbank. And I haven't looked back.
Jaclets tops are special because each one is handmade, and personalised with French script hand-written onto each shirt. I make sure I only use quality fabrics so ladies get a few seasons of wear out of them. Even though there are over 15 000 people on my business page, I like to think of myself as a small business still. I don't have any employees and none of my work is out-sourced—no screen-printing or anything. I would never produce 100 of the same item because that's not what I'm about. I don't want my label to look generic. If you don't get a Jaclets top from me—you can't get them anywhere else.
Jaclets never go out of fashion because my designs are timeless. I don't follow trends so to speak, but seasons influence the colours that I use, for sure. Winter means darker colours—berry, charcoal, chocolate—while as soon as spring hits it's about colour again; pastels and prints and all the fun stuff.
This Loveleigh Party is only one of a series of unique and intimate events which Leigh and Jacqueline have planned—each envisaged as a small yet singular pop-up phenomenon fuelled by creativity and authentic social connection. Following the success of a LoveLeigh Morning Tea in July of this year, Leigh has set her sights on broader and ever-more inclusive horizons. Some of the intriguing intimations received by this writer involve coffee carts, a greater diversity of up-and-coming local designers, and even plans to take the LoveLeigh show on the road to western destinations where a small but committed fan-base is steadily growing. Inspired by The League of Extraordinary Women's Brisbane Breakfast Series, Leigh is also looking into cross-disciplinary events with female entrepreneurs working in fields besides design and fashion, where women can swap success secrets in the safety of a non-judgemental and relaxing setting.
A LoveLeigh signature - fascinators on display... Photo c/- Scott Colquhou 500px.com/themonk
There's certainly plenty to follow on the LoveLeigh Designs and Jaclets Facebook pages, and a vibrant conversation to join should time and distance prevent your physical presence at the next LoveLeigh occasion. For those who like to touch, talk and try things on, you'll also find details of upcoming LoveLeigh Designs and Jaclets market stalls, which have thus far popped up everywhere from the Gold Coast to Toowoomba.
Always a vibrant conversation on Facebook with LoveLeigh Designs and Jaclets...