Modern Australia has a unique fashion style that is able to be clearly distinguished from European
fashion lines. Whereas European fashion has a more tailored approach, Australian fashion has a more
casual approach. Hardcastle will combine these two notions to create simple, unfussy staple pieces,
that are crafted and tailored to perfection.
Hardcastle has strong and unwavering views on the disposable nature of high street fashion where
most of it is destined for incinerators or landfill sites. My aim is to create a highly fashionable brand
firstly, that fights the trend of the high street. The garments will be high quality pieces that will be
treasered for years to come. I want the collection to evolve effortlessly to minimise disposability.
The current economic climate has forced consumers down two paths. The first being to purchase
cheap, high-street fashion that has a high rate of disposability, but a low price tag. The second path
is one of buying less, but buying quality. Hardcastle falls into the later category and is thus relying on
consumers to continue to want to buy high quality pieces that will carry them through more than
The fashion industry is one of the most competitive. In this highly competitive fashionable world
snatching the limelight for new Brands is a risky preposition. Achieving market share without extra
ordinary style detailing, fabric, design, and silhouette is next to impossible. Hardcastle is extra
ordinary. The collection will use high quality fabrics from London’s top wholesalers, be creative
and fashion forward, have superb detailing and hand-work and will evolve effortlessly through the
I, Louise Hardcastle (owner and creator of Hardcastle) have worked as a designer for 10 years. My
expertise covers Graphic Design, Art Direction (photoshoots), and Illustration. I have worked in the
Graphics side of the Fashion Industry for the last few years including a luxury fashion magazine, and
two high-end accessories brands.
My career started within the Advertising Industry which not only broadened my skills in Graphic
Design, but has ingrained a commercial sense in me and I have developed knowledge in time
management, budgets, presentations and managing production schedules.
In 2008 I began working for Box Magazine, a luxury lifestyle publication, where I worked relentlessly
to maintain the standard of the quarterly magazine to that of a reputable luxury fashion publication.
During my employment at Box I gained critical experience in Fashion Trend Forecasting, Styling and
In 2008 I started Fashion and Textiles Degree in Australia. However, maybe due to my age and
subsequent expereicne within the design industry I felt frustrated and disspaointed with the
experience., so I decided to move to London to pursue opportunities within the Fashion Industry.
For the past few years I have worked for two mid-market accessories brands with London. I have
not only developed my Design and Art Directing skills and focused them on the retail industry but
I have gained knowledge in production of consumer goods, budgeting, fashion industry timings and
seasons. I have also developed a list of influential contacts within the Fashion industry which I can
call on for expertise and advice.
So basically I class myself as a self taught “Garment designer” with training and industry experience
in Graphics, Marketing, Art Direction and Advertising.
As the owner of Hardcastle I am extremely confident in my skills as designer and creator. But I
believe my most important qualities are my strong creative vision, my dedication, my unperturbed
attitude and undeniable passion. As I creep towards my 30’s my hunger to make this lifelong dream
a reality has pushed its way to the top of my priority list.
SS 2011 Collection
My inspiration fro my debut SS 2011 Collection came from the Quechuan Women, who are a part
of a rural community residing in Central Andes, Peru, South Africa.
Quechua people, partiocularly the women, identify themselves with their distinctive clothing, wearing
fantastically bold and clashing wrap-around dresses. skirts and blouses; and brightly coloured shawls,
an intoxicating mix of deep orange, blood red and electric pink
The Quenchuan Women also sport a bowler-style hat which are said, by some, to have been
adopted by the Quechua after a British hatter dumped a load in the nineteenth century. Others
claim that they are a copy of the hats worn by the Spanish invaders, but it is this clashing style of
maculine and feminine that is so appelaing to me as a designer.
The Quechua indigenous women also take part in the Tinku Festival in Macha, Bolivia. Tinku is an
ancestral ritual that consists of rival villages engaging in hand-to-hand combat. The ritual supposedly
ensures richer, more prosperous crops in the coming year. These women actually slug it out with
one another as the ritual supposedly ensures richer, more prosperous crops in the coming year. It is
this fiercness that inspires me.