The life of a fashion buyer: glamour or hard work?
Angie Fox chased Melbourne fashion designer and buyer Ilana Moses through quaint Parisian laneways during Fashion Week...

Oct 24, 2013 10:28
by Angie Fox

If it’s every girl’s dream to shop for a living then Ilana Moses, 37, fashion designer and one half of the Melbourne duo behind successful boutique Grace, is living the dream.

And if anyone is under the mistaken impression that shopping for a living is glamorous and fun, Moses – who is undeniably glamorous, and in a different outfit each day from the likes of Carven, Rag and Bone, Equipment and many more lines that she and partner Georgia Danos carry in their Hawksburn store -- is testament to the fact that her job is in fact damn hard work.

Not only is she on the go scurrying from one quaint Parisian laneway to the next from 8am till 8pm, photographing looks and interrogating sales people about fabrics, cuts, colours and pricing, but she barely stops to take a breath or snap a selfie in front of the Eiffel Tower, let alone eat. And she does all of this in heels. Let’s not forget she just did exactly the same thing in New York only two weeks ago.

Against the backdrop of a dull, grey Parisian sky, lithe models parade around the showrooms of Carven and A.P.C in bright, shiny, new garments, again featuring the florals that we have been lusting after for so long now, but also some very welcome solid colours and neutrals. It’s exciting; there’s a buzz in the air. For Moses bringing this back to her customers makes the hard work worth it.

A lawyer by trade, Moses began designing an eponymous clothing line more than seven years ago while living in New York. She found instant success and orders began rolling in from stores including department store Nordstrom, unusual for someone producing their first range.

On a New York bound flight she was, by chance, seated next to Danos and the idea for Grace was born. The pair has built up a large and loyal following in Australia and more recently, with the launch of their on-line store internationally, of fashion savvy women who adore labels like Thakoon, Joie, Epice, Calle, Preen, MSGM and the Moses designed Grace label to name a few.

Moses says she and Danos always have the customer in mind when buying and is excited about the new labels she has secured on her recent travels, especially the new shoe ranges. But she remains tight-lipped about the names; such is the competitive nature of retail in Australia.

With no time to sightsee or shop for herself, Moses returns home just six days after departing and will immediately begin placing orders from the hundreds of pages of silhouettes she has just viewed. The hard work never ends.

Visit Grace is at 595 Malvern Road Toorak or online at www.gracemelbourne.com.au

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