This month we spoke to Deanne, creator of the fashion brand Maiocchi.
How did you get started?
I started out selling t-shirts at the valley markets. There I met some girls who were opening a store in the valley, so I started Maiocchi selling thru their store on consignment.
I was then approached by Natalie Denning who wanted to buy Maiocchi for her stores in Brisbane. So I took my small collection on the road and got 8 other accounts in Brisbane. From here I got an agent and we now sell to 70 stores in Australia and New Zealand
What was your very first design?
On our first collection we did this apron skirt, it has a reversible apron that hooks onto the front of the skirt. The apron has a different Japanese fabric on each side so it can be worn either way. It was a big hit, this skirt and now we include it in each collection, and its still our best selling item!
Where does the name Maiocchi come from?
My surname is Mayocchi, its Italian, but the spelling got changed somewhere along the line (as there is no ‘y’ in the Italian language ) and so we changed it back to the original spelling for our label – just to confuse everyone!
How would you describe your personal style?
Maiocchi was once described as Barbie meets geisha, which I thought was very fitting description of Maiocchi, and also of my personal style as I love 50’s styles and Japanese prints and handcrafts.
Maiocchi is a family run business, do you think this has contributed to your success?
Absolutely, my mum was a really great dressmaker when I was growing up, so I could come up with all sorts of ideas and she would make them for me – I think is why I ended up studying fashion.
Mum is a perfectionist, and loves the whole production side of things, whereas I just want to hurry up and get to the end result. We always get so much feedback about what great quality our garments are, and this is mostly due to Mum’s fussiness about that sort of thing.
My dad is a gem also, as he does all the bookwork type of stuff- he has had his own business for most of his life and although it’s nothing to do with fashion, he’s been great to have around for business advice.
What is your favourite fashion accessory?
We have done a kimono style, waist belt for summer, it’s in one of the most beautiful Japanese prints I have ever seen – a cherry blossom print – and we have overlayed sheer black silk organza over the print to give it an evening wear look. I have been wearing this belt with everything lately!
What will you be wearing this season?
Lots of colour, being from Queensland! …and pinafore dresses as they are great for layering so you can really change the look of a dress by putting different tops under or wearing a bolero over it!
What makes your brand so unique?
The beautiful printed fabrics we use and the quirky little details.
What’s next for Maiocchi?
We hope to continue growing our business in Australia and enjoy the journey
What does being a woman mean to you?
It means I can wear dresses; thank goodness I was not born a boy as I love girly stuff. When I was little I refused to wear pants, and would only skirts or dresses that twirled when I spun around.