Fashion Graduate: Hayley Elsaesser


Another year has ended and another hopeful group of fashion graduates venture into the ‘real world’, optimistic about forging their path in the fashion industry. We catch these bright young things fresh from their final year parade and find out what they have in store for the future…

MEET: Hayley Elsaesser, QUT

Collection Name: Candy Coated Voodoo

Collection inspiration: In my graduate collection “Candy Coated Voodoo” I explored the world of all things creepy and spooky, and gave it a sickly sweet twist. Embracing my love of the wicked and weird I developed numerous textile prints, along with laser cut leather details to produce a colourful and quirky collection. I love the juxtaposition of something that would normally be considered scary, such as spiders and skulls, done in a candy coated colour scheme yielding something that is fun, and a little bit crazy.

What was your favourite part of putting together your final year collection? When researching and developing my concept, I decided from the very beginning this collection was something that I needed to have some fun with. So many designers, especially students take themselves way too seriously. Since I was spending basically my entire waking life working on this collection for many months I went with an aesthetic and concept that was fun. By working with such bright colours and prints I couldn’t help but be passionate about what I was working with and definitely never bored.

So you’ve finished uni… what now? At the moment I am working doing freelance fashion and graphic design along with running the online store for a local boutique. I have made no concrete career plans at the moment, however I have been chosen to show at L’Oreal Melbourne Fashion Festival in the Sportsgirl National Gradutate showcase so that’s going to keep me busy for a little while.

What is your dream fashion job? My ultimate career goal is to have my own label. However, I would love to gain as much experience as I can in many facets of the fashion industry before I do.

What do you think your biggest challenge will be now? I am definitely a person who likes to be organized and have a concrete plan in place. However, at present my future looks quite foggy and I have no idea where I will end up in 6 months. This is very challenging for me being unable to plan ahead, however it is also very exciting at the same time.

How do you think living in Brisbane will influence your next career steps? I initially started studying fashion design in Canada where I’m from. However, I decided to gain a different perspective and moved to study here at Queensland University of Technology. It was a great decision as I feel that I have gotten an amazing, and very practical education.

How do you think technology is starting to influence the fashion industry? I think technology has always influenced the fashion industry even from the beginning such as the invention of the sewing machine or the assembly line. In the present day I feel like technology has very much changed the fashion industry into much more of a globally connected and fast moving phenomenon. It is also great for up and coming designers to make a name for themselves using of the vast reach of the internet.

Where is your favourite place in Brisbane to eat/drink/shop? Being from Canada where sunny, warm weather is often hard to come by I can really appreciate an afternoon picnic in New Farm Park.

Image Credits:


MODEL Brit Brockhurst

HAIR & MAKEUP Taylor Kimler


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