Alemais is set to invest in new categories and expand its stockist base, following its win of the National Designer Award at the PayPal Melbourne Fashion Festival.

Alemais currently has 170 stockists across 26 countries, with USA its largest distribution base followed by Australia.  

For the current pre-fall collections, Alemais has secured Net-A-Porter and MyTheresa and will add Liberty, Goop and Incu for the following season.  

Alemais founder Lesleigh Jermanus said the brand is aiming to steadily develop its customer base. 

“We're not looking for huge expansion. I think this feels really good now," she said. “It's about nurturing those relationships and focusing on product and quality and what you know, what we do well, in trying to expand slowly.”

This steady expansion strategy will also extend to its supply chain, Jermanus revealed.

“With China locked down, that's been hugely impactful to us just because everything sort of slowed down for a while. We are looking at expanding our supply chain.

"We've been looking at working outside of China and we already have great suppliers in India. We did work with some suppliers in Australia, and we're still looking to continue that in the future."

The move comes as Alemais prepares for category growth, with a recent swimwear venture set to be followed by a jewellery range. 

“I'd like to spend some time building solid foundation, but we're definitely expanding into other areas," Jermanus confirmed.

“I know, when I shop, I never have time to go and look everywhere, and sometimes I want to be able to buy everything all at once.”

According to Jermanus, the brand's core category is dresses, comprising of half the range and specialising in printed fabrics and colour. 

“We work on a lot of placement printing, and we work with a lot of artists," she said. “When you're collaborating with other artists, it always evolves and you get that unknown feeling - you don't really know what you're going to get.

“There's always these happy accidents along the way that turned out to be really beautiful parts of the collection. It's a much longer process, and it takes its time. But when it works, it's amazing.”

This year, Alemais took out the 2022 National Designer Award, winning a cash prize of $120,000.

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