Just a short stroll from the golden sands of a north Queensland beach, Hayley Bracewell is making her dreams come true.
A mother-of-three, she’s also the ‘everything’ behind her label Bracewell+; designer, photographer, office admin … you name it!
Still a relatively newish label (although I was rocking some Bracewell+ pieces in Miami last year) Hayley creates garments that make you feel in holiday mode all year round and can take you from a walk on the beach, to cozying up on the couch for a little Netflix. Australian-made, the Bracewell+ collection is manufactured in Sydney using 100 per cent, mostly organic cotton .
Describe yourself in three words…
Snap-happy (can that count as two?), hungry and … lucky.
Do you remember your first fashion buy?
Oh god… I remember a stonewash denim bubble skirt and matching crop top for my Year 7 graduation dinner.
What’s your favourite piece from your collection and why?
It changes constantly, but I have to say that the Rolled Tee and Beach Shorts are the only pjs I ever wear – I have them in every colour we’ve ever done, on rotation. The first thing I do when a new colour arrives is to snap myself up a pair.
Was designing something you always wanted to do?
I guess it had always been in the back of my mind, but it wasn’t until my kids were out of nappies that I finally had time to give it a red, hot go!
What gave you the confidence to set up your own label?
When I found someone who could provide the organic cotton fabric I wanted, and then was also able to manufacture my designs in Australia, it was the sign I needed to kick things into gear. It’s always been my goal to support Australian industry, and it has the added bonus of providing absolute confidence in the quality of my pieces.
What does a typical day look like for you?
I get up early to caffeinate before the kids wake up then it’s getting lunches made and coordinating the kids to get to school is all a bit of a blur, but from that point on every day brings something different.
Some days it is all emails and order processing, and some days (the best days) are our location shoots. I’ve been getting behind the camera myself lately and it is one of the true loves of my life.
Styling and bringing things like lookbooks together are also really satisfying. My kids are all in early primary school, so some days are dropping everything to watch sports day, or see them get an award on assembly.
Describe your favourite way to spend a Sunday…
We live in a small seaside town and are lucky enough to be walking distance to a beautiful beach. My ultimate Sunday is down there, drinking wine with my husband and taking photos of my kids. I’m in love with my camera almost as much as my family!
What’s your favourite holiday destination and why?
We were lucky to travel around the world in our 20s, but these days I can’t go past Great Keppel Island; it is truly heaven on earth.