Through the Looking Glass with Dyspnea Label

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Aimee-Cherie, Rachel & Jameen

dysp·ne·a (dsp-n)

noun.  Difficult or laboured breathing

It was rainy and rather treacherous when we went to visit the studio of Aimee-Cheri, Rachel & Jameen - the three lovely ladies behind the hottest new label on the Perth fashion forefront.  The rubbish weather was, however, quickly forgotten when the trio introduced us to the buttery leather and iridescent creations housed in their work-space.  With only 57 days until Perth Fashion Festival, the girls have been hard at work since the announcement of their inclusion in the WA Designer Collections runway show.  Not to mention, they won the PFF iPhone cover art competition!  Plenty of exciting things in store for this young design trio - enough to make anyone short of breath!  Read our exclusive interview to find out more about the fresh faces of Perth's fashion scene.

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Roll Call:

Aimee-Cherie Kendall, Rachel Motteram & Jameen Zalfen make up the Dyspnea design trio.  We design luxurious leatherwear and have fun eclectic complementing pieces in unusual textiles.

When did you start Dyspnea & what inspired you to do so?

Dyspnea was established in late 2012.  It started off as just an outlet for us three to create pieces we all wanted to wear and have.  Stylists began borrowing pieces for shoots, and from there it became apparent we should make it a fully-fledged label.

What is the best thing about working as a team?

We're all really close friends, so we know what we all work best at.  We've studied together at Bentley Polytechnic West and have the same knowledge of design and construction, but take it on in our own way.  That's pretty much how we came up with our collections; we all work on each garment until we're happy.

When I think of Dyspnea, I think of...

... finger-licking pastel pieces.  Just check out our latest iPhone cover case* that will be exclusive to Perth Fashion Festival!

*Here it is! It makes us think of ice cream:


Who or what influences your designs for Dyspnea?

Dyspnea is influenced by the lives the three of us lead.  We take inspiration by where we've been or what we're into right now.  Anything we design is something that any one of us wants to be wearing.  All three of us love vibrant and new ideas, experimenting with new fabrics, stuff like that...

Congratulations on being snapped up by PFF this year!  What do you hope this opportunity will bring?

Thank you!  It's absolutely huge for Dyspnea!  Especially as we're such a new young label, and to be showcasing at the WA Designer Collections in our first year is pretty incredible!  We hope with the show that we can present our best Dyspnea selves to all the buyers, bloggers, Perth fashion industry, and young women out there wanting something!  A lot of what we do hasn't been previewed by anyone yet, so we're super excited for everyone to see what we're really about!

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Name three people who influence your personal style?

Christine Centenera - Aimee
Vivienne Westwood muses - Rachel 
My housemates' wardrobe - Jameen

What is one interesting quirk about you?

We're suckers for sparkly things and nacho pizza.

Your favourite kind of tea?

All coffee bugs here.

Sketch yourself in your favourite outfits:

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Thank you so much to the Dyspnea girls for letting us catch a glimpse of their exciting work.  Make sure you get your tickets to the WA Designer Collections show this year - who knows, you might get dyspneic just watching their designs come down the runway!

xx S & T 


  1. Ohhhhhh how can I not have heard of these guys? SO up my alley, PRETTY EXCITED to see them show at PFF. Tulle and shiny things and leather and shiny leather? Yes please.

    As an aside I enjoy that you make people in this segment draw themselves, too cute.

  2. Oh... my heart melts. Lovely interview, and have to say these girls have some incredible talent - that crystal embellished dress looks amazing. All the best to them during PFF! x

  3. Nice work, I wish them all the best at PFF, looking forward to seeing the fruits of their labour!

  4. So nice! Sparkles are making me drool!!! I have seen some of those fabrics used in another Perth label's work - I know there have been a lot of issues with multiple Perth labels sourcing the same textiles over the years. Clearly it nobody is at fault (it is just an awesome fabric), but it does ramp up the case for original prints and textiles :-)



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