Menswear is always, well, a little boring. It’s hard after all, to reimagine pants and shirts until the designs turn full circle.
However, Melbourne-based designer Ema Hewitt is reimagining Menswear with the launch of her label HEW.
Launching on Thursday 23rd October, HEW mixes textures, colours and prints to create California-esque pieces that can be dressed up and down.
Creator and Designer Ema Hewitt spoke to us about all this HEW, the upcoming launch and her inspirations for the collection.
What made you decide to make the line?
I wanted to provide the fashion mid-market with some fresh and fun menswear styles. I just felt that there wasn’t much out there. There is definitely some exciting menswear coming from more high-end labels, however it’s hard to find a playful merge between colour, print and texture in the menswear market offered at a more affordable price. These days a lot of men are just as keen as women to express themselves through their dress style, so I think it’s important to provide them with more variety and choice.
What fashion experience have you had prior?
I graduated from the Bachelor of Fashion Design program at RMIT in Melbourne in 2010.I then traveled to Paris and completed a fashion internship in 2011. After interning in Paris I moved to Los Angeles where I stepped into Costume Designing. I have continued to work on television series, commercials and film clips as a costume designer since relocating to Melbourne. However it was late last year that I decided to re-focus my work onto fashion design, and started creating what is now HEW.
What does the name HEW represent?
HEW comes from my surname Hewitt. However when you hear the word it can also conjure associations with the word hue – referencing colour, or Hugh – a mens name…..which I like. This slight confusion relates to the playful nature of the product.
What type of demographic does your label intend to hit?
Creative and somewhat bold men, really from any age… I guess ranging from 20year olds up!
What has been your main inspiration for the label?
My main inspiration…I guess my male friends and family. Going to festivals, dressing up, costume design, being around people who are driven by creative passions…it all inspires how I design. I want to create products for these people, I see them and I think wow, and that’s how I guess I apply my environment to my design.
Is it hard being a Melbourne based designer and breaking into such a populated industry?
To be honest I think it’s really hard being a designer no matter where you are based… breaking into the fashion industry can be both challenging and daunting to say the least! It has helped that my friends and team have been really supportive and inspiring.
What do you hope for the future of the brand?
I hope that the brand continues to grow with each season. It’s so hard for me to say now though…as we are in such early days, but I would like to introduce more products some time in the future. I look forward to moving into accessories ect… I left the company name as HEW Design so the product style could be fairly open, as I’m not sure what the future holds and I don’t want the brand to be limited by only stocking clothing.
Have any of your travels inspired HEW?
Yes – This first collection for Spring Summer 14/15 is named after the street I lived on in L.A – “Orlando” was in West Hollywood. My fond memories of my time living in California helped to keep me inspired whilst putting the debut collection together.
Is this your first line? how long did it take?
This is my first release of Menswear – it actually took quite a while to source what I feel were the
best fabrics and manufactures for the company and it’s product. I think being the first collection, everything has taken a bit longer than expected. I am still figuring out the best way to approach problems, and the most efficient way to get it all done on time!
WHEN: Thursday 23rd October
WHERE: 524 Flinders Street Melbourne, Doors open 6pm