Next up in the Future of Fashion Perth, West Australian designer Jonté Pike stole a few moments away from her new collaboration, to talk to us about sustainability, resilience and how local creatives supporting each other keeps the industry thriving.

“Strengthening the knowledge of local, means strengthening the industry altogether, align with stylists or jewellery brands you love working with, and if you are having a tough time; talk about it. We all have rough times, be there for fellow creatives to lean on and it will come back to you.”

Privé Fashion Platform Runway by Perth Racing 2018. Photo Credit: Tristan Jud.

Growing up in South Africa, Pike remembers sitting in on her mother’s fashion lectures watching students sketch models as she played with Barbie dolls. Today Jonté Designs is stocked online and in stores across the east and west coast of Australia. 

After her days playing at the back of the fashion design classroom, (but prior to establishing a self-made designer label), Pike moved from South Africa to Australia, where she won several (yes, several) designer awards and textile scholarships. 

Jonté designs’ first capsule collection was shown at Perth Fashion Festival in 2012 and has been a label for the “feminine, eclectic and edgy” woman ever since.

For Jonté Designs, sustainability matters. This Perth designer says, encouraging and educating people on how to restyle their outfits is an easy and simple way to dress sustainably. Pike says, “buying a key designer piece and pairing it with a few fast fashion items goes a long way, we can’t all afford to buy designer clothes all the time.”

Pike recommends not being afraid of re-wearing, “there is so much inspiration out there from Instagram and stylists showing how to resurrect old pieces and give them a whole new look. Focus on buying pieces you love from designers you love and know the story behind it. Jonté garments are produced both locally and offshore by companies that Pike has visited, met all her employees and examined the working conditions.

Photo Credit: Simon Santi, The West Australian.

The Perth-local designer says, “resilience is 100% key for success in this competitive industry. It’s pretty much a rollercoaster, you have highs and lows and not much in between, it can be very cutthroat but so rewarding.

The key to staying afloat in the business, Pike says is aligning yourself with like-minded creatives, “with having that support system, you can really help each other out, talk to each other and empathise with similar difficulties.”

Pike explained that supporting others in the fashion industry and neighbouring fields is especially important for local designers who are often “wearing multiple hats”. Pike says many designers like herself, have their hand in the marketing, accounting and sales side, let along putting together a collection. 

The industry is tough at the moment, but Pike believes the globalisation of fast fashion has actually brought designers closer together. “We’re seeing more collaborations between locals and a big push to support the local Australian industry.”

Pike’s resilience is an avid reason for her being featured as a Face of Future of Fashion Perth. It’s also because of her dreamy long and short jumpsuits that the ASI team have been eyeing off for quite some time (PSA: check out the ‘Amplify Beaded Jumpsuit’ and this will all make sense).

Interested in a career in fashion styling? Register your spot for our next Perth Workshop here.