Proudly designed and made in Sydney, the family run company Philosophy Australia provides beautiful pieces of clothing designed to be loved and worn for many years – with pants often described as “the best ever purchased”!
For fashion designer Alison Lennard, Philosophy Australia is more than a labour of love. The mum of two started designing for the fashion brand 14 years ago, and recently took over as owner, she has now set up HQ base in nearby Willoughby for the brand.
Philosophy Australia releases two collections a year, Spring/Summer and Autumn/Winter, and each range comprises more than 150 styles which cover wardrobe essentials and fashion must haves. You may already be familiar with the brand as it is stocked in more than 200 designer boutiques across Australia.
“Clothing is a way of expressing who you are without saying a word. My hope is that by wearing a piece of PA clothing you are exuding confidence, timeless and effortless style, and a caring nature,” Ali said.
“We are extremely proud that 100% of our garments are made in Sydney, we always say with love, and as such we have great relationships with our suppliers and contractors. By keeping production close to hand, we can maintain a premium level of quality, produce quickly, and ensure that it is ethically and sustainably made in our couture-based method.”
Originally from the UK, Ali and her husband moved to Sydney after falling in love with the city while on holiday visiting a friend. Within the year the couple had emigrated to Australia, and Ali joined the already established Philosophy brand as their new designer.
“Coming from a long history of designing for large global companies, joining Philosophy was a dramatic change of pace. Working within a small team for the first time, producing with bijou quantities, seeing garments being made right in front of me only a few hours
after I sketched them, and ultimately having autonomy on how a collection came together and managing the process from sketch to shop. I loved it instantly” she said.
After designing and managing the brand for more than a decade, it was a natural progression for Ali to purchase the brand name and continue the labels successful business once the founding directors chose to retire.
“Since launching I have made several significant changes to the way in which the business operates, most notably with the opening of an online store. Historically Philosophy had been a wholesale label selling purely through independent boutiques, but going online has made the label visible to a whole new audience, and given the opportunity for us to present our brand on a more individual level,” Ali said.
“We really do appreciate every purchase – we do a little team dance with every Internet order, no joke! We all take a great deal of pride in what we do, and hearing our pieces are loved, or that we have helped a customer, makes our day!”
One of the most popular items from the Philosophy Australia range is the bengaline pants, with more than one review describing them as “the best pant I’ve ever purchased”, so the question of course, is why!
“So many positive reasons!”, Ali said.
“The fit, the quality of the fabric, the feel on the body, the value, the style longevity, the versatility of styling, the ease of care, the finer details, and the knowledge that they are supporting a local and ethical brand promoting Australian made product.”
Ali spent more than a year looking across Sydney for a new location for Philosophy Australia headquarters, before finding Nathan Lane in Willoughby, and she couldn’t be happier.
“The move has proved popular with customers too, and we are certainly feeling at home in our lovely new HQ. We can also highly recommend a few neighbouring cafes which the team and I have been frequenting!”
Three years into running the Philosophy Australia business, and Ali says she cannot imagine her life any other way.
“I may be the face and heart of the brand, that I treat as my fashion baby, but I am only one part of the Philosophy family. My team may be small, but they are mighty, and we’ve all been though a lot together. I could not achieve even a quarter of what the business does without their constant belief, dedication, and support. Yes, there is a little something in my eye….”
We’d like to offer a special discount code to our new North Sydney neighbours.
Just use code HEYNEIGHBOUR for a 10% discount for any full priced online purchases
Address: 1 Nathan Lane, Willoughby