Thursday, November 7, 2013

Collette Dinnigan Quits

Collette Dinnigan is still managing to inspire me, especially with her recent decision to put her kids first. Read article here

She is closing up ( for a little while ) to focus on what is most important to her, and refreshingly it is her children.

Is being a Mum is the new black?

I've just finished 3 months of working all weekend, hardly spending anytime with my little girl who is rocketing towards teenager hood too quickly. What a silly decision!

So we will get our shop up eventually, but as all the best designers are doing (Sass and Bide?), I'm enjoying spending time with my child while she still wants to hang out with her Mum.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

The trick to staying alive in retail in Australia

Here is a free tip to any struggling retailers out there
from someone who has worked in the industry for 20 years...

Don't ignore your customers!

I spent the day in Mornington recently, checking out retail opportunities for our flagship store.

For those of you who don't know it, Mornington it is a beautiful little seaside town on the Mornington Peninsula, about an hour out of Melbourne.

I spent a bit of time exploring the shops, being ignored in most of them.

I even took photo's of shop assistants ignoring me. In empty shops where I was the only potential customer, it bugged me that much! 

This home wares shop was a stand out. Great customer service, products people want to buy, and it was full of customers.
Surprise, surprise!

It really isn't hard to be friendly.

We did find one potential shop to lease though. And as my little girl pointed out, if we just change our logo from Sunshine & Daydreams to Funky Stuff, we could move straight in.

I'm not sure of that idea

Monday, August 5, 2013

How to dress a tween.

The best answer would be, you don't, just let them express themselves.

But, it is a little harder to let go when you have spent your whole working life in the fashion industry.

My little girl turned eight today, and more than ever I'm realising that she has her own taste and interests.

I imagined her birthday as a high tea party looking something like this........

She has requested a detective party and a science kit. And she couldn't really care less about clothes.

She is her own person. She has her own taste.

At least she has been invited to a princess party this weekend, and that means I have to make a big frothy party frock for her by Saturday.

I even bought her a tiara to go with the vintage fabric we chose.

So, don't forget that I can design something amazing, for even the fussiest of tween. Drop me a line, come follow us on Face book and Instagram, as we slowly but surely build our Australian made demi couture and bespoke empire for little and big girls.

Monday, June 10, 2013

The Joys of trying to work from home

It use to be easy, working from home.

When I lived alone.

Now, however, things are different.

Jennie came over to take some snaps for the online shops

There were children and cats getting in the shots

Kids and cats need snacks, constantly

They were bored

They suddenly needed to do craft

I had promised to take them to the park

We got our shots in the end.

And I finished my day by watching The September Issue

I dreamed of the day Anna Wintour discovers us and takes us both under her designer wing. I'll be the new Thakoon and Jennie will be the new Mario Testino.

I am so grateful that this is my life.

But, I can still dream.

Monday, May 27, 2013

If I was a man, I'd wear this..........

Sometimes I daydream about what kind of man I would be.

 Don't you?

Well anyway, I know I'd be a Dandy.

I'd get my hair and beard trimmed at Captains of Industry,

Get my shirts made to measure there too,

My accessories from Lord Coconut,

And I'd fly to London to get my suits made here............

Photo Courtesy of Business of Fashion of Thom Sweeney,UK.
Look closely at this photo.Now squint your eyes, and where it says Bespoke Tailors, imagine' Sunshine & Daydreams' bespoke for big and little girls.That's what we are working towards.

It looks like this at the moment

 I discovered Thom Sweeney, while reading Business of Fashions daily blog on the revitalisation of bespoke men's tailoring.(read the full article here).

It warms the cockles of my heart to read about how young men are embracing quality over quantity.It seems that small businesses specialising in made to measure, quality garments that are made to last, with expert service in a stylish and creative environment, are booming.

Now I just have to hope that girls will follow this trend.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Goldie Jewellery Launch

I was so excited to be invited to the Goldie jewellery launch,(checkout their range here)at Surround in St Kilda. I was the very first person to RSVP (very uncool, mistake number 1)

In my previous life, I use to go to these sorts of things, but after about 10 years of being off the fashion radar, I was a self conscious nervous wreck. (mistake number 2)

At least I got my dress made in time, and Jennie looked the part in her Miss Moneypenny dress.

The jewellery was amazingly beautiful

Beautiful Bianca eyeing off 21st birthday present ideas.

And I spent the evening trying to not to get eye contact  with people I  used to know

How silly am I? I didn't speak to one person, not even the owners of Surround (check them out here), who had sent the invitation. Because of my social awkwardness, people probably think I'm an incredibly rude snob (big mistake number3)

How hard is it to actually go up to someone and shake their hand and introduce yourself?!?
I'm so mad at myself

Anyway, I have another thing to go to this Friday. Pozible's 3rd birthday party at Hub.

So I need a new dress, and a complete personality makeover.
I'll let you all know how it goes.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Anna May Wong, Fashion Icon

You may not have heard of Anna May Wong, but in 1920's & 30's Hollywood, she was a big star.

And I'm using her as my inspiration for my Melbourne Cup season head pieces.

Previous Work

It looks like I'm getting myself organised early this year.

So, If you are equally as organised, I can match a beautiful head piece to any big or little girl's outfit.

Or even better still, if you have a lovely boutique or department store? I'd love to hear from you.

New party season 2013 photos coming soon.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Dresses for little girls 7 to 14

Test driving a sample.

So, surely no parent wants their little girl to grow up too quickly? But at the same time, no 7 year old wants to wear the same outfit as a 3 year old.

At least that is my theory.

And little girls want to run around, get messy, have fun in swooshy dresses that just have a hint of what it might feel like to be a grown up.

But, just a hint.

It is a tricky age group to design for.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

This is trending

My mood board is back up. It is a weird mix of 70's surfer chic and haute couture. In my head, this makes sense.

I find inspiration all over the place.

 This book cover caught my eye on the weekend. How hard could that be to bead by hand?

Another source of inspiration last week was Garance Dore's behind the scenes at Valentino film.

In fact, Garance Dore has a lot to answer for. I can loose hours reading her blog and watching her This is Trending and Pardon My French videos.

But I now have a deadline to work to.

I have 5 weeks to get a small range finished and photographed for

So enough of the daydreaming, and being distracted by this.

Let the madness begin!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

My one and a half hour working week.

 Back to business. 

I've finally found time to sit down and start sketching my new range of party dresses for little girls 7-14

It's 3.30 in the afternoon on a Friday, and happy hour at our local pop up park is due to start in about an hour.


I get all inspired at the most inconvenient times.

I hope your week was more productive......

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Can't blog.......too busy.....

The good news is I finally have a cutting table in my little workroom. 

No more kitchen table cutting!

The bad news is I can't use it yet

It is lost under my 'to do' pile

I've got too much going on all at once

I still only have one sample made for the new range

We are still working on the website

And a possible pop up shop for the end of the year

I've also taken on a new project involving kids and nutrition

So I'm now spending my days researching that

when I should be sewing


Somehow it will all come together beautifully.

And make sweet, perfect sense.

Fingers crossed.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Buy Less, Choose Well

Limited edition 'Miranda' dress.
Made to order 
Contact us at

I don't always follow my own advice. I'm often tempted to buy cheep chain store pieces, especially for my little girl, but they fall apart so quickly!! Its just not economical in the long run, and is so bad for our planet!

So, as one of my new years resolutions, I'm going to try and resist the impulse to buy cheap disposable fashion.

And my other big resolution, to get our OFFICIAL WEBSITE  and ONLINE BOUTIQUE up and running in six months, and a bricks and mortar shop to follow soon after.

You will be able to purchase both Sunshine & Daydreams and Cicciolina. Demi couture and limited edition dresses for little and big girls that can be worn, passed on or re sold.

And all pieces are guaranteed not to fall apart after 3 washes.