Photographer: Lara Milenko
MUA: Charlie Keilty
Model: Kate Dillewaard
Interview by Jenna Henderson
Neon Heartache is a Brisbane label, which has been around the traps for a little while now.
Brisbane Threads were very lucky to grab an exclusive interview with the creative genius behind the label, Amelia Duncombe.
The young designer studied at the Academy of Design, which introduced her to the fashion world and inspired her to become a business owner.
Amelia talks us through the inspiration of Neon Heartache’s new Autumn/Winter 2011 collection titled, ‘Privately Absurd’, shares her current celebrity style crushes and gives us a little insight into what the future holds for Neon Heartache.
Have you always wanted to be a designer?
When I was young I had a few dreams, first was to be a hairdresser (I had discovered scissors and mangled my Barbie’s hair) but that was short lived. Then I wanted to be a heart surgeon, which lasted all the way through high school up until my senior years where I started focusing on my art more.
I had always wanted to be a fashion designer in my heart of all hearts. I think once I realized how much enjoyment I got out of drawing and creating garments I knew there was only one thing for me to be doing.
Which designer/s inspire you?
So many designers inspire me! Romance Was Born for their creativity, Alexander Wang for the dark aesthetics, YSL for its classic silhouette, Mui Mui for their quirkiness…I could go on forever. There is one designer that I am in awe of and that is Karl Largerfeld for his ability to design for such different labels. AMAZING!
Any advice for aspiring designers?
Just do what you love.
How did Neon Heartache start?
Neon Heartache started in 2008 at a Young Designers market at Southbank in Brisbane. I was at the markets for about six months and then was picked up by the buyer for Tribune (a store in New Farm, Brisbane). From that point on Neon Heartache have been working to get into more stores around Queensland and inter-state.
Neon started in 2008 at a Young Designers market at Southbank in Brisbane. I was at the markets for about six months and then was picked up by the buyer for Tribune (a store in New Farm). From that point on I/we have been working to get into more stores around Queensland and inter-state!
Where did the name Neon Heartache come from?
The name derived from a feeling really. When I was studying I was away from my family and friends and I missed everyone (heartache) but because I was doing something that I enjoyed so much it made the experience 100 times better. With most of my collections I usually focus on using elements that are on opposite spectrum’s of things, say light with dark, masculine with feminine, structured with movement. Neon Heartache can be translated into all the collections that way.
What was the inspiration behind Neon Heartache?
I usually am inspired by my surroundings, but literature is very inspiring to me as well. I like to work off a feeling rather than images.
Tell us about the new collection, ‘Privately Absurd’, what was the inspiration behind it?
The most recent collection, ‘Privately Absurd’, was created with this poem:
There is a coldness in my veins,
And blood in my eyes.
A darkness in my heart,
But love on my mind.
I am privately absurd,
But we are faithfully entwined.
Where can Neon Heartache fans purchase your designs?
From Drobe boutique in Fortitude Valley, The Tribune and online at our online store.
What does the future hold for Neon Heartache?
At the moment it’s a move to Sydney, and then potentially overseas for the near future. But definitely great things for this label!
Who is your style icon?
For my own personal style, Gwenyth Paltrow but I used to (and still do) love Alexa Chung!
What is your wardrobe must have at the moment?
Now that it’s getting close to winter, I’ll be bringing out my boyfriend blazer with exaggerated shoulders!