Oobi Designer Alexandra Riggs talks about her exciting new venture into designing for Tweens...
For the first few years of designing for my label, Oobi, over ten years ago, it was exciting times! In a very short time Oobi found a niche place in the children’s fashion world and my customers really got to understand my prints and Oobi’s mix-and-match aesthetic and, well, that little bit of quirkiness that’s always there.
A few years later Oobi became more popular and really organically there became a beautiful Oobi world, including parties and events, great media coverage, the famous Tea Parties and a lot of charity events too. And of course we really upped the ante on photo shoots and then… I started to get all the gorgeous images on Facebook and Little Oobi Scrapbook where I could see your beautiful girls and boys wearing my designs all over Australia. WOW!!!
Oobi’s brand ethos has always been about letting kids be kids. And recently we’ve started using the #letthembelittle (“Let Them Be Little”) as our statement about why Oobi is bright and fun and quirky and for… little kids.
But then something happened. And a lot of my “Little Oobis” started going to school. Even some whom had worn Oobi from day DOT also started big school and listening to Justin Bieber and playing with Silly Bandz and some of them were turning 9 or 10 and even 11!
And, well… they just stopped being “little”.
But what about my gorgeous “Oobis” who had been with me for years? What about my beautiful models and the divine children that I’ve known for a lifetime – their lifetime! I see them growing in front of my eyes every day. At first I felt sad. And then I said to myself…
Well… They aren’t little.
Let them be who they want to be.
Let them B who they want to B…
Be a ballerina, be a doctor, be a teacher, be a superstar, be amazing, be inspired, be creative. Be… who you want to be.
And that’s why we’ve called our tween label “B”.
It’s a reference to Oo-B (how you pronounce Oobi), it’s about being unique. And it’s about how I feel about childhood. And how I feel about this special time in a child’s life. It really is a bittersweet time because yeah, they’re little. But they’re not little.
And we took out the “I” from Oobi and we focused on the B. Because who you are is what’s important in this world.
So B – it’s WHO you want to be.
We’re really just dipping our toes in the water here to see what your daughters like and to find out how they feel about “B” the label. Maybe they love it, maybe it needs tweaking. Maybe it needs a different name.
But we felt that it was just right for the launch and I’m proud of what we’ve done. I feel like we’ve taken Oobi to another place and for another age group. There are cross-over garments where we felt it was appropriate (for example the Gatsby Dress) and there are also unique pieces where it felt like that should be “just for B”. There are also special pieces in unique fabrics (all still designed and printed by us of course!).
And here are some fun behind the scenes photos from a photo shoot that Aver and Line in Melbourne are doing for ‘B’! Exciting times!
At any rate we certainly hope that you love “B”. Give us your feedback please because that’s how we roll at Oobi. We love to take your feedback on board and always improve.
B is also going to launch in a really cool way. The launch date is going to be during the school holidays on September 22nd. You will not want to miss it, it’s going to be very interactive and a lot of fun! So please pop that in your diaries, you won’t want to miss out.
Sorry for the essay. I’m a bit like a wind-up toy when it comes to chatting about Oobi!