Sixteen-year-old fashion entrepreneur Indigo Walker was inspired to delve into the business world during a window shopping moment in the upmarket resort town of Noosa.
“It was hot and expensive, and there was underwear there that we liked that was really impractical for bigger sized people for $200, so we thought we could make it ourselves, ” she said.
Indigo is launching her brand Topsy-Turvy Intimates on Friday, with a pop-up shop and fashion show at Funhouse Studio, featuring her hand-made clothing conjured from recycled fabrics from donations, second-hand stores, and her own clothes.
“It makes it cheap to make, and there’s so much textile waste. The average family throws so much into landfill each year, it is ridiculous,” she said.
Indigo has tapped a market of consumers looking for something unique, created with little to no impact on the environment.
“There’s lots of Indie chicks, for want of a better word, and hipsters get street cred from saying they have sustainable clothes, and also middle-aged women are interested,” she said.
She said due to the difficulty in buying underwear in sizes outside the marketing norms, and a lack of choice in regional areas, many women go online to shop for what they both want and need.
“I always felt excluded when I saw skinny chicks in the commercials,” Indigo said.
“When you look at what advertising provides, you would think there is just one woman in Australia – tall, skinny and blonde.
“I think almost every woman isn’t being reflected in media and advertising.
“Exclusive brands make sizes to a limit, because they don’t want bigger women to be seen in their underwear.”
With some guidance, and the ease of opening a shopfront in the digital world, Indigo is enjoying the challenge of running her own business.
“The business side has been fine, and [Funhouse Studio director] Cayce [Hill] has helped me a lot,” she said.
“Making an online store is ridiculously easy.”