Image courtesy Dion Lee
Interview

Dion Lee

07.21.15

Our love for Australian fashion knows no bounds and this is most certainly true of Sydney-based fashion designer, Dion Lee. In his eighth year, Lee remains one of the most modern and inventive designers when it comes to technical innovation. He has found a way to seamlessly meld together function and wear-ability while crafting a truly architectural signature look for his brand. His willingness to experiment with interesting patterns and challenge his customers has set him apart from his contemporaries. Having previously shown at Australia and London Fashion Week, Dion Lee now presents his highly acclaimed collection at New York Fashion Week.

Interview

How has resort market been going for you?

Resort market is a great season for us. It is when deliveries align in both the Northern and Southern hemisphere and a great time to focus on new categories. For example, this season we launched our swim line.

Is it a season that is more or less stressful for you than a season that you do runway?

The pre-collections are a great time to focus on rounding out the collection without the distraction of a runway presentation. Definitely less stressful!

How do you mean?

Runway collections become very brand focused and it adds another layer to the timeline. The logistics of a fashion show are always tricky to navigate, especially as our team travels from Sydney to work in New York. It is always a little more challenging when you are showing in a city where you are not based.

Do you consider New York a second home for your label?

I definitely see New York as a second home. I love the city and would love to spend more time there moving forward.
I really love the pace and the energy and the culture.

When did you decide you wanted to show in New York?

After being in New York a couple of times I started to become drawn to the idea of presenting there. I think there are a lot of lifestyle parallels between Sydney and New York.

Is it hard to keep up the US fashion calendar living on the other side of the world?

It is a challenge, however it is something that I now feel comfortable with. I think most Australian businesses now understand how important it is to be global.

Can you compare the Dion Lee customer in the US vs the AU?

Australia is a very small market, therefore there is a smaller customer base for the very high-end pieces. Internationally, the unique perspective of the product is very appreciated and the market is less price sensitive.

What inspires you most when designing?

It always changes! I think it is a process of finding what feels new and stimulating.

How has the collection evolved since you launched back in 2008?

The collections have really evolved. My tastes have matured and my experience has grown. I often look back at previous collections and don’t understand what I was thinking!