“It is just not in my nature to sit back and rest on my laurels”
One can’t help but wonder if Perry’s good mate and one-time Australia’s Next Top Model
co-star Charlotte Dawson, who passed away in February 2014, would have been right at home among the local casts. “So amazing,” Perry says with a laugh. “Her humour… it’s the thing I miss most. Yeah, she would have been the housewife from hell – the ultimate!”
Production on ANTM soldiered on despite Dawson’s untimely death, and after marking a decade on air last year, an 11th season is now in the pipeline. Perry serves as one of the show’s judges, and admits it can be “contentious… people might look at it and may not agree with what that industry is about, but that’s what that industry is. And if you want to be part of it, we’re going to show you what it’s like to be the best part of it. You don’t want to be Australia’s next average model.”
Nor, it seems, does Perry want to be remembered as just an average designer. Which is why his refusal to memorialise his accomplishments while he is in the midst of still achieving them actually makes sense. “It’s just not in my nature to sit back and rest on my laurels,” he says. “For me, it’s about amping up, keeping it new, making sure we, as a brand, don’t become complacent.
“You know when someone starts to do greatest hits albums?” he asks. “It’s like, ‘I don’t have anything new, but how ’bout we look at what I’ve done?’ I will never do that. I will always say: ‘Look at what I’ve got – that’s new.’”