Re­pur­pos­ing at Re­tail

VM&RD - - COLUMN -

Natalie Coul­ter, Founder, Belle Fla­neur, re­cently spoke at Fash­ion Ex­posed Busi­ness Sem­i­nar on how re­pur­pose (re us­ing props for re­tail ) can be not only cre­ative and in­no­va­tive but cost ef­fec­tive too. While bring­ing an en­vi­ron­men­tally con­sious in­store dis­play which con­nects with the shop­pers, Natalie gives de­tails on the projects that she has worked on. Read on to see Belle Fla­neur is bring­ing re­pur­pose at re­tail in style.

Iworked for Sports­girl as the state vis­ual mer­chan­diser for New South Wales when I was 19-years-old with 52 stores un­der my belt. But then I got to a point where I per­son­ally wanted to be more proac­tive than just pro­mot­ing some­thing other than just spend­ing. I’m a vis­ual mer­chan­diser, I’m a stylist, I love fash­ion, I love in­te­ri­ors, I love colour, I love pulling looks to­gether – how am I also go­ing to do this with a so­cial con­science? And then I started work­ing in re­use and I launched Belle Fla­neur two years ago in col­lab­o­ra­tion. I call it a col­lab­o­ra­tive learn­ing/teach­ing space. Be­cause it’s very col­lab­o­ra­tive. It’s hands-on, it’s roll up your sleeves, it’s in the commercial arena where we’re learn­ing and teach­ing from one an­other work­ing with clients in situ.

Brands

We’re reg­u­lars in Robby Ing­ham’s win­dows and he is one of Aus­tralia’s fash­ion icons for re­tail. Robby was the first per­son to do all the big la­bel im­ports – Comme des Garçons, Issey Miyake and those sorts of people back in the ‘80s and he continues to im­port all the big la­bels in Aus­tralia like Alexan­der McQueen, Givenchy, Stella McCart­ney. He’s been a re­ally big part of en­abling Belle Fla­neur to flour­ish be­cause he’s al­lowed us to put garbage in his win­dows along­side the high-end. So you can have a $5,000 Givenchy bag sit­ting on some­thing that we’ve di­verted from land­fill. We jux­ta­pose the high-end with pre-loved be­cause in the hands of ar­ti­sans, trash re­ally be­comes trea­sure. It takes some­one bold and brave enough like Rob­bie Ing­ham, who also

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