A personal peak inside the Australian design house
that is best known for colorful print collections of caftans & resort-wear
inspired by cultures around the world
Q. Why Miami Swim Week? Why and how is it important to your business?
A. Miami Swim Week is the biggest Swimwear showcase in the world. How could I
resist the opportunity to show off my latest collection in one of the most
gorgeous locations on the planet! I was so honored to be asked to open Miami
Swim Week this year. It’s really a creative’s dream to be present and experience
the magic of Miami, it’s diversity, energy, heat. And to see our industry family in
one magical place.
Q. What are the themes for the collections presented at Miami Swim Week?
A. ‘Our Natural Lore’ is very sacred to me. It’s inspired by finding the animal
magnetism within ourselves. During two pivotal milestones in my life- pregnancy
and my breast cancer battle, I worked with an incredible energy healer. They
taught me to tap into my inner animal energies: my wolf, my bear, my inner
lioness. Allowing myself to embody these animals elevated me to a higher power,
where anything became possible.
Q. What was the Camilla wrapped car used for? Is it permanently in Miami?
A. The CAMILLA printed Lamborghini was a fun idea to celebrate the Miami lifestyle.
I had a week of bolting up and down Miami, I had to do it in style. Barbie style! It
was so fun to see everyone wanted a pic with the CAMILLA-mobile. It made
people smile from the first second and nothing beats the joy our brand spreads.
Q. How would you describe your design process?
A. There’s so many things we consider when deciding where to explore next. For our
core collections, the design process is a long and considered one, and my aim is
to honour each and every soul whom I met while travelling. Each collection tells a
story. They are birthed from my travels and we always go off the beaten path. It
takes roughly eighteen months from inspiration trip to the launch of the range.
Each step of the journey needs it’s own creative care and time. I try to tune my
ears in to our customer’s hearts, and design for their lives.
Q. How long has your brand been philanthropic? How did you choose the charitable
organizations you contribute to and why?
A. Owning my brand has to come with accountability and responsibility. I feel if you
don’t have a social responsibility to give back to a community or cause, no matter
how big or small, your business lacks heart. Since the start I always felt compelled
to engage in charity and giving back to community. I had a blessed beginning in
life, I was educated, I was able to start a brand and to live a life of freedom. This
shouldn’t be considered a privilege – everyone deserves a world of possibilities.
And I want to pay that forward.
The definition of success for me is having the opportunity to help, empower,
support, enable and celebrate others. That has always been so important to me.
My core business model revolves around donating $1 (with the option for our
customers to top up) of every online order to three key charities our Tribe are
truly passionate about. These are The Hunger Project, Women’s Community
Shelters, and the National Breast Cancer Foundation. Together, these three
charities are helping to stop child marriage through education, protecting victims
of domestic through shelter and preventing women dying of breast cancer
through research. Our customer’s values are changing. They want more than just
a fashion brand, they want a brand with a purpose. This has always been my
dream, to create a brand with an intersection of style and philanthropy. Now we
are seeing the evolution of other brands in the luxury space following suit, and I
couldn’t be more happy.
To give you a little bit more information about The Hunger Project: They are a
global, non-profit, strategic organization committed to the sustainable end of
world hunger. Their mission is to end hunger and poverty by pioneering
sustainable, grassroots, women-centered strategies and advocating for their
widespread adoption in countries throughout the world.
Q. What is your corporate culture in a few words?
A. We work hard and play hard together. Color the world! If there’s blood sweat
and sparkles you can bet we’re all in it together, getting it done. We’re a big
business with a close-knit family mentality and we celebrate each other’s
successes at every opportunity.
We foster and encourage development opportunities with an online learning
resource system with over 70, 000 courses assallable to our whole team. We
nurture both soft and hard skills: from career mentoring and financial health to
soft interpersonal relationships and time management. We often host Lunch and
Learns on a range of topics including skin checks, sustainability, mental health,
healthy habits and eating well. We offer yoga, meditation and even dance classes
in the mornings before work and at lunch. We want everyone in our tribe to
spread their Angel wings.
They say never to work with children or animals, but at CAMILLA we welcome the
chaos! Each morning we welcome our staff as well as their pet of choice (mostly
dogs but we’ve had a couple of bunnies sneak into a meeting looking for snacks),
plus the sounds of children often fills the air as our busy working parents go
about balancing work and life. We don’t bat an eyelash as a flock of mini angels
rollerskate past the boardroom. We have always been flexible at CAMILLA with
working practices which makes the juggle for parents and carers much easier.
Everyone is in control of when, where, and how they work. We often invite
healers, shamans and gurus into the Villa where we all practice saging and
cleansing ceremonies for various occasions. Last, but certainly not least, the
celebration culture at CAMILLA is as alive and well today as it ever was. With
quarterly recognition awards and monthly birthday celebrations (and gifts!) our
Villa team often gets together to celebrate each other’s successes. And I don’t
know if you’ve heard about our Christmas parties… but let’s just say they are as
theatrical and ridiculous as you’d imagine.