STORY BY RICHARD CORNISH
PICTURES BY CHRIS TURNER
Any age, any size and any gender...
The whir and clatter of an industrial sewing machine fills the room. It ceases and modern tunes ooze from the sound system. The woman at the machine looks up. She is immaculately dressed. A broad red smile forms across her face. This is Jodi Grzyb. Fashion designer. Maker. Thinker. Her shop in Vincent Street Daylesford is also her making room, but there is barely a scrap or thread on the floor. This is a zero waste fashion business.
To explain Grzyb stands to reveal an outfit of beautiful Italian wool cloth that is sculpted into an ensemble, that while is reminiscent of Issey Miyake, it looks strikingly original. She wears a pair of black drop-crotch pant with an elasticised merino jersey waist. Over this is a top and structural jacket in khaki, a generous scarf-like collar harking to the post military jackets of post cold war. Clean, beautiful, comfortable.
“I only use fashion industry remnants and I use all of the cloth,” says Grzyb. Her clothes are not edged in trim or finished in hems. Instead the arms, legs and bottoms of garments finish in raw edges or the selvedge, the natural edge where the bolt of cloth sat on the loom. Breaking other fashion industry norms is her ageless, sizeless philosophy.
“Any one can wear my clothes from 18 years to 100,” she says. “And there are no sizes, there are pieces here that can fit people who would be judged as size 8 to size 28,” she explains. Her clothes are also multi-gender with a good number of well dressed men now proudly wearing a Grzyb designed garment.
The Daylesford designer is just 18 months into her business. While she started out carrying some well know designer labels along with her own range she was only a few weeks into her new venture when she ‘had a conversation with herself’. She realized that her business should have a sense of place so she halted orders with outsiders and concentrated on local craftspeople and jewellers such as Jackie Ristevskie and Anji Noov.
While the designer will soon be off to the Adelaide Fashion Festival she spends most days working with the new bolts of fabric as they arrive. “By the very nature of my fabric supply my label is about very short runs and one off pieces,” she say. “That said if you like something we can often make it for you here, you go off and explore town, and we will text you when it is ready,” she says. “It’s modern clothing with old fashion service.”
31 St Vincent St, Daylesford, 0409 977 231