| S T Y L E |
Designer Swimwear | Sydney
KNOWN FOR ITS TIMELESS, SOPHISTICATED and high-quality COLLECTIONS, JETS SWIMWEAR IS REDEFINING THE BENCHMARK OF ULTRA-CHIC BEACHWEAR. WE CATCH UP WITH THE SYDNEY-BASED owner & DESIGNER of jets swimwear, JESSIKA ALLEN, TO FIND OUT MORE ABOUT AUSTRALIA'S HOTTEST SWIMWEAR LABEL.
What is the background of JETS Swimwear brand and when was it originally conceived?
JA: JETS began for me in 2001. The decision to buy the swimwear brand came suddenly, however undoubtedly at the perfect time. My husband woke me up from my sleep one night and said, “Let’s buy JETS”. It was incredibly exciting and intimidating all at the same time, but we knew it was the right decision - the next stage of my life. The key to re-launching an established brand was to be loyal to the existing customers and to also understand the potential of the brand. We took a well-respected brand and injected a new focus and signature design style with an awareness of the original design philosophies. From here, JETS by Jessika Allen was conceived.
What is the philosophy of the brand? What do you feel differentiates JETS Swimwear and makes it special/ unique?
JA: The JETS Swimwear philosophy is focused in design and innovation, and we pride ourselves on superior fit, fashion and fabrication. This commitment ensures that we develop swim and ready-to-wear garments that allow women to feel empowered, confident and beautiful. I believe what differentiates JETS is our unique textiles and use of technology. We design all of our own prints each season, employ digital design methods for our garments, and also digital printing techniques to our fabrications, which allows limitless opportunities in terms of colour, detail and precision. Embracing modern technologies speeds up the process, allowing me to be creative and push design boundaries while managing the necessary commercial elements of our business. Precision and form; function meets fashion perfectly.
What are some of the major inspirations behind your collections?
JA: As the brand grows and my life changes, new inspirations come to mind. This season’s JETS Collection 2015/16 is inspired by a new fierce character, both intelligent and powerful, representing the modern woman’s adrenalising presence and ultra sleek attitude. I believe remaining stimulated and motivated is key. For me, this includes travelling, experiencing people and places, special pieces of artwork, architecture, galleries, cultures and different textiles throughout the ages. I am constantly being inspired by life, which has a direct influence on each season’s vision.
What is your creative process when developing each new collection?
JA: The development of each collection is always an exciting challenge, from creating new trends, forming the colour palette, crafting new silhouettes and prototyping new special design details - or as I like to say, the "secret woman’s business". What I love most about the creative process is the storytelling you can communicate through design, allowing your inspiration and creative thoughts to come to life in the form of textures, prints and fabrications. At JETS, we’re renowned for our focus on the one-piece swimsuit. From the minimalist, tailored shapes to the high-end luxe statement pieces, a signature JETS one-piece is where fashion meets function perfectly and creates the ultimate allure.
What are some of your proudest achievements to date as a brand?
JA: As a company, our proudest achievements include remaining true to our design philosophy, being loyal to our customers and understanding the potential of the brand. These have really been the core factors that have platformed the business in the global market over the past 14 years. This also includes our Australian manufacturing of the JETS by Jessika Allen swimwear, our ongoing accreditation to Ethical Clothing Australia and being early adopters of technologies, which has allowed JETS as a brand to act as an innovator in the fashion industry.
What are some of the challenges and learnings that you've faced as a designer & entrepreneur?
JA: My biggest learning as a business woman was understanding the importance of being true to the brand - understanding JETS, the company philosophy and business processes. In keeping on par with this, I’ve learnt the significance of surrounding myself with passionate individuals with complementary skills and who share the same vision. Another learning for me was that you can’t do everything yourself and the importance in investing time to train staff. As the brand has grown and evolved, learning to balance my work and personal life has been a milestone achievement. Allowing me to redirect my energy into design, family, my interests and even take a holiday or two.
As your company is based in Sydney, how does the city influence your creativity? What are some of your favourite local places to eat, drink and hang out in Sydney?
JA: I’m born and bred in Sydney and couldn't think of a better place to be based. Sydney is a stunning backdrop and offers an electrifying lifestyle that undoubtedly influences my creativity. My favourite places to eat includes A Tavola (348 Victoria Street, Darlinghurst) which is known for their authentic Italian dishes. My daughter and I also love Messina for ice cream, the ultimate weekend treat! As for hanging-out, I love spending time outdoors and being active. The Bondi to Bronte coastal walk is always a beautiful way to end the day.
What are some of your favourite destinations in the world, and why? Where do you love to escape to on holidays?
JA: Anywhere with the sunshine and sea! Domestically I love Hamilton Island, where its pristine turquoise sea and panoramic views take my breath away every time. I also enjoy holidays in Noosa for winding-down and spending time with my family, we head north each year. As for my favourite holiday spots internationally, I absolutely adore Italy and the Amalfi Coast. From the sparkling Mediterranean, fresh produce, postcard-worthy views and the pastel colours of the houses that border the cliffside towns, the Amalfi Coast is easily the most divine holiday destination!
Where can we find Jets Swimwear collections around the world?
JA: Currently JETS Swimwear is stocked in over 350 prestige department stores, fashion and specialty swim boutiques, and online stores around the world. This includes David Jones in Australia; Selfridges and Fenwick in the UK; Harvey Nichols in the UK, Turkey and Dubai; Brown Thomas in Ireland; and Neiman Marcus in the USA. In addition, our online store currently ships to Australia, New Zealand and South East Asia.
What is next on the horizon for the Jets Swimwear brand?
JA: As the business and fashion design landscapes continue to evolve and become increasingly digital, what’s next on the horizon for JETS Swimwear is all very exciting. From expansion possibilities, pioneering trends and engaging with customers, I look forward to presenting our swimwear to women through social media and other next-generation digital platforms, including becoming a truly global brand. However, what I am positive of is that the JETS Swimwear brand will continue to create beautiful swimwear that will make women of all ages and backgrounds feel glamorous and confident.
Visit the Jets Swimwear by Jessika Allen Online Store: jetsswimwear.com
O T H E R S T Y L E I N T E R V I E W S . . .