Stitch Lane was sewn when Michelle Khadye discovered a gap in the market for quality, comfortable and elegant robes. “I have just always loved them – you can slip them on at any time, whether it’s lounging around at home, getting ready for a night out or even sleeping in them,” said the now robe designer.
“I have been hearing so many women for years complaining about their self-confidence and I have always wanted to help with this. I have also found that it’s hard to find nice pieces to wear at home which are comfortable but are not track pants.” With eight years experience in interior design, Ms Khadye had the idea to branch out into fashion design while travelling for work. “I was flipping through a magazine and seeing a page of not-so-fabulous robes and I thought, that’s it.”
“It’s time I bring some luxurious, long-lasting robes to the market.” Though the processes involved in fashion and interior design are similar, switching styles demanded new skills. “I have always had an interest for fashion and textile design… I thought I should push myself and learn these new skills.”
All Stitch Lane robes are designed in Australia, with the pure Indian silk spun in a manufacturing plant in India. For Ms Khadye, sourcing a trustworthy and quality manufacturer was one of the main challenges she faced, but passionate from the start, the designer loves the process as a whole. “Right from the initial concept sketches and images, through to seeing the product in real life.”
“You can’t beat that journey.” Ms Khadye has been supported along the way by a range of different people. “My husband, family, friends and even the broader design industry [have] been so supportive.” Initially wanting to recreate the feeling of putting on a soft, luxurious robe at a day spa and feeling invincible, Ms Khadye is keen to achieve more. “If my robes help even a few women feel glamorous, then we have succeeded. I am sure Stitch Lane will expand its collections and possibly into other garment types as well. The future is very exciting.”
Readers may also be interested in this story about Brisbane’s Fashion Runway.