A lot of what you read on this blog is fluff, 

and I’m not afraid to admit it.

However as someone who works in, and fiercely supports, the fashion industry in Western Australia I feel like we need to sit down and have a serious conversation.

It’s a pretty hard slog being a designer in this day and age.
Not only do you need to create a beautiful product with a point of difference to catch the consumer’s eye, as well as build a solid business from the ground up and present an entirely new collection every few months to ensure the label stays current.

And now on top of all of that it seems designers need to be constantly looking over their shoulders for big brands ripping off their designs. 
I’m not claiming this is an entirely new phenomenon because of course it’s not – however with the rise and rise of social media it’s definitely becoming a much more prevalent issue for both emerging and established designers.

One of WA's rising stars, Natalie Rolt, has experienced the issue firsthand, 

"It first happened about three years ago with myself and a few other designers and legal action took place, which resulted in the website being terminated." 

But now unfortunately another company has popped up, Dreamer Trends, is not only peddling Natalie Rolt Designs (NRD) on their web-store but even going as far as using the exact images Rolt uses on her own website and social media platforms.

"I have contacted the company but of course with no response back, which is not surprising to say the least. Companies like this tend to ignore, ignore, ignore unless legal action is taken."

It was actually devoted NRD fans who first brought the issue to her attention,

"We have very loyal followers who love what we do as much as us and they send screenshots, snapchats and emails notifying us."

But when asked how she feels about the theft of her designs,

"We have created a name for ourselves at NRD and to have that tarnished by a company who tricks people into thinking they are getting our product is wholeheartedly unfair. All I have left to do is make our customers aware of these businesses and tell them to do their research before online shopping."

But Natalie Rolt is far from the only designer who is suffering from this kind of thing. Rolt may have the most blatantly obvious case, however she is not the only one this kind of thing is happening to.

Even iconic Australian labels, WA designers One Fell Swoop and Zhivago amongst them, aren't immune to this kind of thing; in fact it's becoming a more and more common occurrence.

It may be true that nothing is new anymore and everyone is inspired by someone else's work but when a big name brand takes an iconic style, that a brand is renowned for, and then mass produces cheap copies of it - it just leaves a bad taste in your mouth.

Would you rather support cheap low quality labels that have most likely never had an original design idea in their life or hard working, talented designers who bust their asses day in and day out to bring you beautiful, original designs?

I'm not saying that this little blog will make a difference, 

but I know my answer.





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