A good shop assistant is both a) extremely hard to find, and b) severely underrated.
Think about it. For half an hour they’ll be better than your best friend. They’ll run around the store grabbing anywhere from a size 8-14 while you decide just how oversized you want that shirt to be. They’ll compliment your manicure so sincerely that you’ll want to wear OPI Malaga Wine for the rest of your life. They’ll indulge you while you toss up between the pale blue or black while you complain that all your wardrobe is black and you really need to branch out. Then they’ll totally not judge as you transfer money, pull out two cards and hand over some cash to buy that top you can’t afford. In black.
Yep, they’re pretty much angels on earth. So we wanted to introduce you to a few. Meet Lucy Rogers, manager at Alpha60.
FJ: What made you decide to pursue a career in fashion?
Lucy: Well, I moved here from New Zealand where fashion is really big and the fashion designers are quite forward. When I moved here I wanted to work for a local boutique store that would grow and develop into something really big. So it’s great to work for a brand like Alpha60, which is still local but is doing big things! For me, with fashion it’s not necessarily about expensive brands. It’s more about the boutique itself.
Why do you like working for Alpha60?
It is a smaller local brand boutique that is growing fast and becoming popular worldwide.
How would you describe your personal style?
I was just talking to my sister about this! She thinks I dress really crisply! I don't like wearing dirty shoes. I always have to wear clean sneakers. I own about 50 pairs of sneakers! I do try to zhoosh it up a little sometimes with a pair of heels, which I will be buying from our new collection.
What is your favourite item of clothing in the new collection?
Definitely all the white pieces. I am a massive fan of white linen! I know this is random but I always wear white in my passport photos so I look fresh! I wear white all the time and if it's not white it's navy or baby pink. They are also the three colours from the new collection for this month.
With Alpha60, we do five drops a season so the girls in the studio are constantly designing new womenswear. Which is great because it keeps us coming back!
Where do you source your style inspiration?
Back in NZ I worked at a boutique called Recycle Boutique. It's a consignment store which had lots of op shop, vintage designer, one-off and archival pieces that you can’t really find anywhere else. That would encourage me to be really free with my style and give me inspiration. Recycle Boutique has actually just come to Melbourne and has opened up a store in Brunswick where you can not only buy one-off pieces, but can sell your own clothes too!
Would you say you like to set trends or adopt trends?
Set trends definitely! I do not want to follow.
What do you think are the most popular trends in the new collection?
I would say this new collection is very Japanese inspired. Lots of big culottes with sneakers, quite tomboyish. Even though the designs are sort of androgynous, we have done them in feminine colours such as pink and navy. I actually just got back from Japan myself. I think it’s so popular for Melburnians to travel to Japan, and so we get a lot of people coming in store and saying “Wow, this reminds me so much of Japan!”
Where would you like your career in fashion to lead you?
New York! I hope Alpha60 eventually open a store in New York. I would love to work for them from there.
Can you predict any upcoming trends for Alpha60?
I don’t tend to think about the future too much, because I think I would become too self-conscious trying to keep up. I have to say the designers at Alpha60 are very good at making classic yet quirky pieces, which covers all age and size brackets for women.
Is there any advice you would give to other girls wanting to be a part of the fashion industry?
Just be yourself and don’t compare yourself to ridiculous people who have stupid amounts of money. Just be who you want to be and wear what you want to wear!
201 Flinders Lane, Melbourne, 3000