Todays Designer Profile post is on Squeak, a small Melbourne design business ran by textile designer, Pippa Oostergetel. I met Pippa many years ago when we were studying Textile Design together at RMIT, and have been really excited to share her business and designs with you all!
Squeak started off as a smaller enterprise, offering beautifully designed scarves and cushions at the beginning, but Pippa has been busy over the past year, growing the business into a go-to destination for colourful, and quality home and fashion accessories.
For all the fashion lovers out there, Squeak specializes in digitally printed silk scarves, and has recently released a fantastic line of Silk/Cotton blend dressing gowns, some seriously fun men’s pocket squares, and cotton canvas bags and pouches, which all come in Squeak’s exclusive colourful digital prints, inspired by Pippa’s travels and designed by the lady herself. (What a talent!)
And in terms of interior goodies, there is an array of cushions, and tea towels to add colour into the home in a really happy and playful way.
Talking about playful, you ABSOLUTELY MUST check out the amazingly hilarious (and informative) videos that squeak released last week, “How to Pocket Square” & “How to Scarf”.
Check them out below, and if you love them as much as I do PLEASE SHARE WITH YOUR FRIENDS!!!
Let me know what you think of the videos in the comments, and check out my interview with Pippa below – xo Luci
Videos by Squeak
image by Luciana Corrales
Tell us a little bit about yourself and how “Squeak” came about?
Well, I studied Textile Design at RMIT but decided to move overseas and travel before I put my degree to any real use. I lived in Europe for nearly 2 years before I came home. After that I was just working for a company as a Textile Designer for a few years, but starting my own thing was what I always really wanted to do. Eventually I just decided to go for it.
What inspires your design and creative decisions?
I really just design the type of product that I want, or I feel is lacking in my own wardrobe or home at that moment. I probably shouldn’t be so self-serving, but I design products that I personally want, and then I just make enough of them so that other people can have some too! But as for the designs/prints themselves, I find travelling and my own photography to be the biggest inspiration.
What is your favourite part of the design process?
Seeing the product idea come into reality. You’ve had something in your head for so long, and all you can really do is try your hardest to help explain what you want to your manufacturers, with product specifications and the final print artwork. And sometimes it’s not always a clear-cut idea in your head, sometimes it’s a bit murky and you only know that that’s what you wanted when you finally get to see it in the flesh. So when you do get the samples back, and they are exactly what you want, that is by far the best part.
Of course, it’s also one of the hardest parts. Most of the time you don’t get perfect samples first go. It’s a tedious back and forth process, but in the end, completely worth it.
What are some of your favourite Australian fashion brands?
To be perfectly honest, I’m not heavily into fashion. I’d love to spout out some obscure, up-and-coming, Australian fashion designer right now. Oh, how cool and on trend I would look if I did that. But in reality, I’m pretty mainstream with my fashion. My favourite Australian labels are Country Road and Seed. If I’m feeling like splurging on something super nice then maybe I’ll look at Gorman. And one day, oh one day, I would love to be able to afford to shop at Jac and Jack.
How would you describe your personal style?
Quite casual. Jeans and a t-shirt really. Benefits of working for yourself means you get to wear what you want. No horrible corporate wear for me. I like my clothes comfy but not daggy.
What are 5 essentials in your wardrobes?
Jeans, a good white shirt, and an array of oversized t-shirts for your everyday wear. Then a nice silk dress for heading out in. And boots. Oh, there has to be boots. For dressing up, dressing down I don’t care really. Boots are my all time favourite.
Name some of the people who inspire you and why?
I find it’s the success stories that inspire me. Labels like Mozi and Gorman, they all started small like the rest of us, but look how well they’ve done.
I also saw the amazing Carolyn Creswell, the founder of Carman’s Muesli, speak once at a small business seminar. She is incredible. Talk about the ultimate success story and the ultimate inspiration. If I could achieve even less than a quarter of what she has achieved, then I would be a very happy girl.
If you could design an item for anyone in the world, who would it be? And what would you design?
Maybe I would design for Carolyn Creswell! Nah, just kidding. I have no idea though, I’m too busy designing for myself!
What are the top 3 resources which you turn to for inspiration?
Pinterest of course, your first go to for inspiration. I also look at a lot of blogs and magazines, but when I feel like getting super inspired and trend savvy I use Style Site.
What is the best place to shop in Melbourne?
Well, I do have to admit, the new Emporium is pretty nice. Who knew a food court could be so gourmet! Better go check it out while it’s still new, cause I’m sure in a year or two it’ll start looking torn apart, tatty, and somewhat greasy like all the other food courts out there. Oh, yeah… the shopping’s pretty good too.
What is next for the label? Where do you see the brand going in the future?
Well, let’s see. It’s been a pretty big 6 months for Squeak, lots of new product lines came in, so for the near future, I think I might just stop to catch my breath. A few more bags are on the horizon though, and of course, always more scarves. But in another 6 months, I might re-evaluate what my home or wardrobe need, then I’ll design something to fill the void.
Do you have any advice for anyone who wants to start his or her own business in fashion?
There’s no time like the present. Seriously, you can stall and stall and stall… or you can just start.