It was the bright, fabulous 80s styling in the pages of Mode magazine that first drew Megan Salmon to the world of fashion. The art career she had been pursuing till then does not go unnoticed in her collections, each piece a unique exploration of how colour, shape, and textiles can come together to compliment and celebrate female individuality and beauty.
Megan’s label started in 2000, and has since explored ideas surrounding our perception of beauty and the part clothing can come to play in that. “How [clothes] can transform one’s confidence and alter perceptions of beauty and identity.” She tries to develop clothing that delivers functionality, but also creates shapes that compliment all women.
Inspired mainly by art and textile, the designer calls to women appreciate art and culture with her collection. “Cate Blanchett would be perfect for my label,” Megan says. “She epitomizes the beauty of women who are talented and intelligent.” Her work links the worlds of art and fashion through the manipulation of vibrant and unique textiles, and the creation of sculpture-like forms.
This year Megan completed a fall winter 15 collection and a spring summer 15/16 collection. The twenty-page catalogue spreads feature an impressive range of fabrics and colour combinations, true to the designer’s form.
Of the latter assortment of designs Megan says her favourite is the Bridget dress, inspired by 1960s Brigitte Bardot. “I love old pictures of 60s starlets like Bardot where they look sweet and sexy all at once, yet with a girlish demeanor,” she explains. “This dress is timeless and contemporary all at once.”
As a Perth-based designer, Megan admits working in WA does have its challenges; not only is she isolated from the stylists of the major magazines, she finds herself having to freight her collections to the East Coast, which she explains is expensive and time consuming. For this reason, she encourages aspiring fashion designers to strive for representation in retail on the East Coast. “Get agents who know the retail over there and can sell you into much bigger markets than here in Perth,” she says. “More sales gives you much more control in every area.”
But Megan says working in the remote state of WA can also be advantageous. “We are unique here in that we carve out our own style without being held up to fashion trends. It’s great for creativity.”
Megan’s plans for the near future include continuing to broaden her label’s market, with the aim of addressing international sales. We are eager to see her inimitable designs travel the rest of the world!
By Joanna Delalande