The Juliette Hogan brand is synonymous with feminine silhouettes, classic tailoring and beautiful fabrics. Having celebrated her Newmarket store’s first birthday earlier this year, Juliette spoke to Portia Campbell about the expansion of her range to include homewares and to find out how Taylor Swift came to wear Juliette Hogan to Lady Gaga’s 30th…
N. Your Autumn / Winter 2016 collection includes beautiful classic coats and an exclusive signature liquid stone print. Do you have a favourite piece in the collection and if so, why that piece?
This whole collection is my favourite to date – it sums up everything I’m feeling about the brand right now. If I had to pick a favourite I would say I’m loving the Drew jacket – it goes with me everywhere, it’s so effortless.
N.It’s 10am on a Sunday morning. Where would we find you and what are you doing?
When I find something I love I tend to stick with it – so you’ll find me at Orphans Kitchen on a Saturday morning. I get the avocado on toast everytime, it’s amazing.
N.Describe the Juliette Hogan woman.
She’s a busy woman who needs her wardrobe to fit effortlessly into her life. She’s sophisticated, elegant however she’s never the centre of the room. Her style never speaks on her behalf. She’s luxe, she’s effortlessly put together.
N.Taylor Swift wore a Juliette Hogan top and trouser combination to Lady Gaga’s 30th birthday party in LA. How did this happen and how did you feel having one of the world’s most successful pop stars wearing your label?
We are working with a showroom up in LA at the moment. It was incredibly flattering for her to have chosen my pieces when she has access to some of the biggest labels internationally. It was a great moment.
N.What would we find in your handbag?
I travel very lightly with a small clutch so you’ll find a couple of cards, MAC lipstick and my mobile.
N.What is Newmarket’s best kept secret?
The Juliette Hogan store of course! That aside, I do love what Osborne Lane has become – it’s an oasis of calm and it feels very international.
N.The Juliette Hogan brand has expanded to include cushions, candles and luggage. Tell us about the evolution from designing womenswear to homewares.
I am a selfish designer and tend to design pieces that are missing from my life, so essentially the brand is growing with me. I travel a lot and I love having matching travel pieces so I designed the luggage range alongside my beautiful cashmere blankets and luxe tracksuiting. Likewise with my candles, it was such a lovely and personal process developing my ideal scent – it’s masculine yet soft with hints of floral.
N.Your love of a good cheese platter is well known. If you were hosting a dinner party, what else would we find on your menu?
I love entertaining but I tend to try and keep it luxe but laid back – there’s nothing worse than being trapped in the kitchen while your guests enjoy the evening so I will often do shared plates that can be prepared earlier. I love to create a beautiful environment as I think it’s just as important as the food so I have my cashmere blankets for outdoor dining, my JH No.1 scented candles to scent the room along with a beautiful selection of my silk cushions out on the seating.
N.You’ve recently been up to LA to showcase your Summer 16’ Collection, Desert Storm. How does the LA fashion scene differ to New Zealand’s?
It’s a completely different scene than NZ, we are a very small fish in a huge pond but in saying that the decision to start pushing into this market felt very organic. I went up there at the end of my last trip through the desert (which was the inspiration for my latest SS16 collection to be released in August) and made the decision there and then to push into that market – the brand just felt really right in that market.
N.If you weren’t a fashion designer, what would you be doing?
N.How has blogging and social media changed the way you work?
It’s a wonderful way to communicate the brand voice in more depth – I love that we have so many more channels to talk about what we’re doing.
N.Name 5 things that you can’t live without.
My cashmere blanket, Kapiti cheese, travel, long scenic walks and my staff.
N.What are the biggest challenges that you’ve faced building your own brand and running your own business?
There have been so many but they’ve all been essential learning curves that have shaped the business as it is today.
N.How would your best friend describe your personal style?
Minimalistic, luxe, comfortable, considered.
N.What has been your best fashion investment?
Everything I have needed generally I have designed for myself however I have always turned to white sneakers to pull back an outfit and I love my Common Projects. I update them seasonally to keep them looking fresh.
N.You’ve been a regular highlight at New Zealand Fashion Week since 2006. What is your favourite part about showing at Fashion Week?
Being able to present the collections as a whole – so much work goes into creating cohesiveness with each range. I design by fabric and palette then let the fabrications dictate the design.
N. What’s next for Juliette Hogan?
We have a very exciting project on the go that will be revealed later in the year so be sure to follow me on instagram @juliettehogan to stay in the loop…