October 10, 2013 Asmita Aggarwal

As Smooth As Silk

Australian designers Luke Sales and Anna Plunkett reveal their love for prints, psychedelia, Beatles and silk brocade…

Luke Sales and Anna Plunkett were on a holiday in Paris when they got a call from John Galliano’s office to come and see him. Excited about the new opportunity they went, got selected to do an internship which would later materialize into a job, but few know that they refused and came back home. “It came at a wrong time, plus, we didn’t want to work with anyone, so in 2005, we started our own label Romance Was Born. We had a great synergy because we went to East Sydney Technical College and have been friends ever since,” says Australian designer Luke Sales.

Luke and Anna Plunkett have created a special line for WIFW SS 14, based on their work with the Varanasi silk industry. “We work with silk, so it wasn’t that tough…but our garments are not flowy in fact, they are more structured. We never show in winter and only do spring-summer so this was a bit challenging. But we looked at the larger good—-this is our effort to show silk brocade weaving in a modern language and help create a demand for this amazing fabric,” says Luke.

On his first trip to India, Luke and Anna feel it has been a great opportunity to see the weavers interpret their ideas. “We are excited to show in India, and our line is based on marching bands and of course, the iconic Beatles, who came to India on a spiritual quest. We have used their song Yellow Submarine as our theme from their album Revolver released in 1966 and written by Paul McCartney,” says Luke.

With prints being their forte, the duo has given the clothes a psychedelic vibe and as the name of the label suggests they are in it for the fun. “The name of the label is a reflection of how we feel about fashion. For us it is less about making money and doing a business and more about a creative pursuit. So everything we do is straight from the heart,” says Luke, who adds that is in collaboration with theAustralian NGO, Artisans of Fashion (AOF).
IMG_2180 (Copy)Working with Anna, who Luke calls his sister, it is not difficult despite being totally different people. “We are opposites, the way we think and what we like, but in the end it all evens out to create something exhilarating,” concludes Luke.

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