Thursday 16 April 2015


There are benefits of being a small-scale clothing producer. Sarah Hardie of Fabrik says she is able to create limited runs and ensure production is ethical. The Sydney-based designer, who previously worked at Lee Matthews, says that while her designs are made in Bali, the workers are paid above minimum wage and any overtime is voluntary and paid. There are other benefits too - like an annual bonus of one month’s wage at the end of the year. The idea to starting Fabrik was ignited after Sarah had her first of three children. Initially she started to create clothes for her daughter and now the range has expanded to include women’s wear and lifestyle products, such as sleeping bags. Next up, Sarah is hoping to produce a childrens PJ range, and perhaps baby boy clothes.

Note: Fabrik is having a 24-hour moving sale from 8pm AEST tonight. 

What was behind the decision to start Fabrik? I was working for Australian designer Lee Mathews at the time I had my first child Jemima. As she got older I found I needed to be home more and had been making things for her so it slowly started from there.

What had you been doing previously? Having the best time working at Lee Mathews!

What is important to you when designing children's clothes? I like them to be comfortable most of all but also be feminine and whimsical.

How do you try to differentiate your products from others on the market? Being a small boutique label I am able to produce small limited runs in an ethical way.

What has been completely unexpected since starting your business? I love all of the amazing women I have connected with through the business. It's so inspiring to work and connect with my customers, suppliers and people via social media. 

What is something that people often don't realise about your wares? Each print is hand printed especially for me using the best environmental process. The inks used to print are seaweed based and the factory ensures no toxins are washed into the waterways.

Where do you look to for design inspiration? I'm always inspired by my collection of vintage fabrics, and traditional techniques like American patchwork. 

What do consider when dressing or styling children? I always want them to love what they wear and it not be too precious to have a messy play at the park. 

What role do you want your products to play in a childhood? Hopefully they love what they wear and the clothes allow them to express themselves.

What was the last great children's book that you read? The boys and I are reading Animalium because Jonas is obsessed by bats and bugs. Jemima and I are reading a chapter of the The Secret Garden each night.

images courtesy of fabrik

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