Amy is the Women's Designer at O’Neill Australia we sat down with her for a few minutes to find out more about the amazing Spring 17 collection that is in stores and online now
Amy can you tell us what are we seeing this year with the O’Neill Women’s Spring Collection?
The O'Neill Women’s Australia Spring 2017 collection, titled 'Sun Seekers and Ocean Dreamers' is a particularly exciting one for us because we really got into the nitty-gritty of what our O'Neill girl wants to wear.We experimented with bolder colours including red, peach, rust and all different shades of blue! We also really worked a lot on sourcing a range of new and different fabrics and textures across apparel and swim.
It must be hard finding new ideas and inspo each season can you tell us more about where you get your inspiration from for this collection?
I was lucky enough to travel to Los Angeles for a week last year for inspiration research. I was living the classic California lifestyle – surfing at sunrise, eating fresh organic produce, driving up and down the coast, meeting interesting people and, my personal favourite, vintage shopping. O’Neill is a core surf brand which originated in California, so it was important for us to incorporate the relaxed style and natural beauty of our roots in California into our inspiration.
Can you explain to us the design process from start to finish?
It all starts with a design concept. For Spring 2017 it started with a working title of ‘California Cool’. We research our little brains out, finding cool imagery which we personally like, and that fits in with our brand aesthetic and put it all together to create an overall ‘look’ for the season. Then we choose a colour palette and start working on prints that fit into our free spirit, coastal and feminine aesthetic. From there we do all the technical stuff that needs to be done, fabric and trim sourcing, measurements and fits, and a lot of other little fiddly detailed bits.Then we brief our awesome little production team to begin work with the factories to produce everything!
My favourite part of the whole journey would have to be seeing the finished product line merchandised and displayed beautifully by our new-to-the-O’Neill-family awesome Women’s Sales Representative, Erin, in our show room at O’Neill Australia HQ! I get so excited every season to present the range to our whole South Pacific team at our Range Release meetings!
Can you please tell us your fave pieces from Spring 17 and why?
This is a hard one! I often "product test" a lot of the pieces along the design journey so I have a lot of pieces from Spring 2017 that I have already worn to death! My most favourite Spring 2017 pieces are the Ziggy Dress and the Sheridan One Piece. The Ziggy Dress is the most perfect shade of red and I always feel like a goddess when I wear it. And the Sheridan One Piece – well, the imagery we created around this one piece speaks volumes in my opinion (I think we had over 100 shots of just this one piece that we struggled to choose from)! I’m also completely obsessed with our brand new Spring/Summer 2017 wetsuit capsule, The Surf Series, which features a tonal tie dye floral pattern and bright bold colours. It’s the first time the Australian women's design team has been able to get completely creative with our wetsuit line, and it provides a whole new range of shapes and colours to women who live in the South Pacific ocean! This is one to watch, we have A LOT of big ideas for The Surf Series going forward!
What is a typical day like in the O’Neill office?
O’Neill is based on the Northern Beaches of Sydney. Our office is right around the corner from some of the best beaches in Australia and is only 7 minutes from my house! There is no ‘typical day’ at the O’Neill office – there’s always something new we’re working on! A lot of the time you will find myself, Jess, Hayley and Erin sitting on the couches in our design room sipping our morning coffees out of our new O'Neill branded Keep Cups and just staring at our magnetic wall full of prints, fabric swatches and design sketches brainstorming ideas!
What makes the O’Neill Spring Range different to all your previous collections?
Jess ( my legend of a boss/mentor )and I worked incredibly hard to make sure we found the perfect balance between the bohemian surf lifestyle and the relaxed beach cruiser lifestyle to create prints and shapes that would suit our varied O'Neill girl. It's still one of my favourite collections in terms of colour palette and print diversity, and Ming Nom Chong nailed our photoshoot brief bringing it to life!
Thanks Amy for shedding some light into the Spring 17 collection. Amy is wearing her fave pieces in the photos in this blog.
Photos by Josh Moody @joshmoods