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Blog - madeinmelbourne

Quick interview with Suzan Dlouhy


One rainy morning recently, I made my way to the home-based studio of Suzan Dlouhy. Suzan's label, SZN, was introduced to Milly Sleeping in March or April of this year, and was a quiet success from the start. Not many SZN garments have made it into our online shop (although I've added a handful today), as we've tended to get in a small bunch of unique pieces every few weeks or so, and have tended to sell them quite quickly! For the most part, these garments have been wonderful, oversized, monochrome, daily-uniform kinds of things - smocks, tunics, dungarees, etc ... For the most part, they've been made of organic linen or recycled denims, forming simple but unconventional shapes (great silhouettes!), and producing nil or minimal fabric waste. When I spoke to Suzan at her studio, we had a brief but involved chat, about her transition from Canberra to Melbourne, her work teaching with Social Studio (via RMIT) and the evolution of her label. One thing I didn't know about Suzan is that she has a degree in Environmental Science, which has obviously influenced the kind of business she now runs - from (in her 'early days') working with post-consumer waste matter to make her clothing, to (now) spending months and months sourcing organic fabrics, and committing to nil or minimal waste production when making her patterns. I walked away feeling seriously impressed by Suzan's energy and integrity. And - wow - just minutes after posting this interview, I've discovered that SZN has won a Victorian Premier's Prize for Fashion Design... Congrats Suzan! Here, just a snippet of our discussion:

Tell me again how long you've been in Melbourne for?

SD: 2.5 years

It sounded to me like 'things have fallen into place for you', following a lot of hard work. Do you see it that way?

Yes, I've met great people here, who were very inclusive without knowing me, and that's led to different opportunities. 

[In terms of my label], I try to evolve and adapt each collection with the lessons learnt from the last.

How do you feel about working for yourself, on your own? 

I love it! Happiness is being able to play whatever music you want and control the temperature you work in (both of which I couldn't do in an office). Oh, and endless tea breaks!

Do you feel optimistic about 2017? 

Absolutely! I'm about to become a mum, and hope to balance that with building SZN. I'm keen to explore SZN's aesthetic in organic knitwear for Autumn Winter 2017... if I'm not too tired...



October Edition by Chorus

Chorus have launched their October edition, and it's a treat ... a collection of very wearable and versatile cotton garments, plus a lovely carry-all bag. The print featured throughout is called 'Two Hearts', and was designed for Chorus by illustrator, Giulia Cerini. The stand-out piece this edition is the Spirited Shirt Dress, which can be [...]

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July Edition from Chorus

PLEASE NOTE - MILLY SLEEPING WILL BE CLOSED ON SUNDAY JULY 31 - APOLOGIES FOR ANY INCONVENIENCE CAUSED. Out-of-hours appointments are always welcome; email leah@millysleeping.com to arrange at time.The Chorus Monthly Edition concept is going strong. This month (July, tipping into early August), Cassandra and Louise have worked with Vietnam-based textile designer, Lucie Ketelsen, to develop [...]

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Chorus June Edition

One of each, please...Samples for the Chorus June Edition are now in store, until the end of the month. Pictured (from top to bottom) are the Tux Pants - in grey fleck wool or black wool crepe - RRP $380; the extremely versatile Constant Roll Neck - black or cobalt rayon/nylon/spandex) - RRP $190; the [...]

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May Edition from Chorus

Following directly (naturally) on from their first Monthly Edition in April, Chorus have released their May edition ... a neat and lovely top and pant combination. The 'LBD' pants are a redevelopment of a popular cigarette-style pant that was produced for the first ever Chorus collection - now available to order in dark charcoal cotton/poly/elastane or dark [...]

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Edition One

Here, the essential postscript to Tuesday's blog entry - some quick pics of the gorgeous things that comprise Chorus Monthly Edition One. As mentioned, these samples are only in store for a couple of weeks (until the end of day, Wednesday May 04). If you would like to visit outside of regular trading hours, please feel [...]

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Chorus Monthly Editions

As I type, the lovely Cassandra and Lou of Melbourne label Chorus are in store - doing my job for me - 'merchandising' the windows. Tomorrow they will launch both a new collection and their neat new working model, called Monthly Editions. This model will see them releasing outfits (monthly, of course), which will be [...]

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This week, we welcomed SZN to the shop! Suzan Dlouhy - the designer behind SZN - recently moved down to Melbourne from Canberra (and sweetly frets that the labels inside her garments still say 'Made in Canberra' on them, when actually they are made by Suzan in Preston). Her garments are substantial and sculptural - [...]

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December 'specials'.

December's two special commissions have Milly looking her very loveliest, with thanks to Gracia Haby and Louise Jennison (AKA Gracia & Louise), and Anna Varendorff. Oh, and a little tip of the hat to Emina D. from OK OK, for the recent delivery of limited edition hand tie-dyed socks. Various of the items pictured above [...]

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'Recent Sketches': little details

Pictured above - a few staff favourites plucked from 'Recent Sketches' by Seb Brown. Drop by Milly Sleeping before Sunday July 05 to try some of these fantastic pieces on. The original ceramics are not for sale but all hand-made, hand-painted silver jewellery is available to take home for immediate keeps.*  *  *From top to [...]

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