International Women’s Day

Friday 8th March celebrates the achievements of women around the world, from inspiring pioneers to everyday powerhouses. This year's theme is More Powerful Together. Here at David Jones, we’re supporting this movement by celebrating the influential women around us who inspire female empowerment.

Carla Zampatti

Executive Chairman, Carla Zampatti

Carla is one of Australia’s most influential designers, creating luxury fashion with a distinct signature style. Known for her suits and tailoring, as well as elegant evening pieces, Zampatti has brought a touch of glamour to everyday working wardrobes. “I have lived the life of a corporate woman, so I can anticipate the needs of my clients because I've experienced them myself. I know who my clients are, their lifestyle.”

An Italian-Australian designer and businesswoman, Zampatti has been recognised with a number of Australian and international awards for achievement and excellence, including the Companion of the Order of Australia (AC), and she is a board member of the Australian Multicultural Foundation and the European Australian Business Council. “It’s very important to dream”, she says. “Don’t be afraid to dream. When you think you can do it, just do it.”

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Pip Edwards

Co-Founder, P.E Nation

Pip Edwards is one of the most influential Australians in the fashion-meets-fitness space. A respected figure in the fashion industry, Pip co-founded P.E Nation after cutting her teeth at Australian brands Sass & Bide, General Pants and Ksubi. P.E Nation has created huge excitement in the athleisure world and its first collection (launched in 2016) sold out within hours on its website.

As a business it aims to help shape lives by encouraging activity to increase energy levels, decrease stress, feel good and be inspired to take on life. “The advice I would give young women is to find what you stand for”, she says. “Having a unique voice, sticking to it and not compromising works wonders.”

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Balenciaga Hoodie | Chloé Shoes | P.E Nation Pants Coming Soon

Anne Sullivan

Head of APAC & CEO Australia, Georg Jensen

Anne Sullivan began her retail career at upmarket department store Georges in Melbourne. It was here that she was given the opportunity to complete an Executive Retail Management program and her passion for retail grew. In 1999, Georg Jensen approached Anne to develop their retail business and she quickly identified the strong market and the Australian affinity with Danish design.

Today, with a network of 14 stand-alone stores and 33 David Jones concessions stores, Georg Jensen Australia is the largest market outside of Scandinavia. Anne was appointed Georg Jensen Australia CEO in 2009, and in 2018 was made CEO of Georg Jensen Asia Pacific. She is a leader within the highly male dominated retail industry and continues to inspire female leadership within the Georg Jensen business. “You’ve got to find yourself”, she says. “That’s almost the hardest thing in a career, to discover who you are, but women nowadays certainly have the confidence, ability and skillset to dominate.”

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Carla Zampatti Cami | Malone Souliers Shoes | Skirt & Necklace In-store Only

Molly McMahon & Anna MacRae

Managing Director & Creative Director, Molmic

Now into its third decade, Molmic is as much about family as it is furniture. Its founders Molly and Michael are now joined by their four children, the second generation of the business, including Anna, Molly’s daughter and Creative Director. Working with a loyal team of talented and dedicated craftspeople who have been with them since their first day in business, Molmic is proudly committed to its Australian heritage and continues to make all of its furniture in its hometown of Melbourne.

“From a very young age, our mother has been a strong force in our family”, says Anna. “I’ve never really seen a difference between men and women, I’ve always believed women are capable of doing anything.” Molly’s strength is her focus and determination to never give up, “When I put my mind to something, I have to achieve it. There’s no such thing as you can’t do it and I don’t give up until I get there.”

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Jess Gomes

Founder, Equal Beauty

Jess Gomes is a model and the founder of Equal Beauty – a line of Australian-made, fragrance-free skincare that stands for equality and embracing your own self. “At this point in my life I know what works for me, so I just stick to that,” she says. “I like to keep it very natural and minimal.” Equal Beauty mirrors Gomes’ own simple approach, “My products are very simple, with a focus on Australian ingredients and botanicals.”

Equal Beauty is about inclusiveness and diversity, encouraging women to embrace their inner beauty and be proud in their own skin. “If you can step out your door and be you, that’s when everything falls into place, whatever career you want to do.”

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Pippa Hallas

CEO, Ella Baché

Ella Baché was founded in Paris in the 1930s by pharmacist and Pippa’s great aunt Ella Baché and beauty therapist and Pippa’s grandmother Edith Hallas, who brought the brand to Australia in the 1950s with her husband George. Their son John Hallas, Pippa’s father, is the sole owner of the company and chairman of the board.

After a successful career in advertising and marketing, Pippa joined as Head of Marketing, swiftly becoming CEO. “It’s been hugely important to have female role models and mentors in my life”, she says. “I feel blessed to be born into a family that respected women who ran businesses. Here were these two amazing women at a time when women didn’t go to university and didn’t run businesses. They certainly forged the way and formed my beliefs around what I could do with my life.”

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Katie Somerville

Senior Curator, Fashion & Textiles, NGV

Serene and erudite is how colleagues describe Katie. As Senior Curator, Fashion & Textiles at the NGV, she was responsible for the hugely successful show, ‘The House of Dior: Seventy Years of Haute Couture.’ Three-years in the making, she describes the show as a “remarkable once in a lifetime opportunity, requiring several trips abroad and regular late-night phone calls to Paris – a wonderful period of immersive research.”

According to Katie, fashion is a powerful medium with which to communicate ideas and change, “When you reflect on the last 100 years,” she says, “Fashion has been a key catalyst in terms of shifts in society, how we view ourselves and how human beings express themselves – their rebellion or their need to conform.” Katie is currently preparing for the launch of the Krystyna Campbell-Pretty Fashion Gift, which shines a light on the world of haute couture and Parisian fashion from the late nineteenth century to the twenty-first century.

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