Meet Samantha Ogilvie, a local powerhouse renowned for bringing international fashion to the street through not one but two iconic stores; Samantha Ogilvie and Maryons. The story began with Samantha Ogilvie boutique, a multi-brand store with a cult following and continues with the takeover of Maryons, a designer accessories store with forty years of history. Want to know more about the brain behind the boutiques? We chatted with Ogilvie to discover more…
When and how did the vision of Samantha Ogilvie boutique come about?
We established the store (SO) some 12 years ago. I saw a need to provide clothes for busy, young mothers which I was at the time buying from some of the best contemporary labels in the world. At that time in Brisbane, there was a really big gap in the market. You could buy some high end international labels or some Australian labels but nothing in the contemporary market. We were the first store to buy in line with international seasons. It seems unusual now but we didn’t hold our stock so customers were getting one of their first instances of wearing stock that was appearing in stores at the same time as in the northern hemisphere.
Our aim is to bring the best of these labels to the store and provide the best customer service to our busy and diverse customers and have an understanding of their varied requirements. We try to do this in a genuine, warm environment where hopefully everyone feels at home.
Tell us about your new baby Maryon’s! What initiated the takeover and what’s your plan for the store moving forward? What new labels can we expect to see?
I was approached by the owners of Maryons saying that after 40 years they were looking to move on. They wanted to keep the DNA and feel of the store and felt that we had similar customer values and ethics and felt it would be a good fit. I knew it was a wonderful opportunity as Maryons has been an institution in Brisbane and is beloved by many. Maryon herself was always such an innovator and the first to bring many international labels to Australia so I was thrilled to be able to take over and expand her legacy.
Your buying trips are envied by most (including us!) – how do you select to buy without becoming overwhelmed in the moment?
Yes I am so lucky to get to travel as much as I do. I just love it. I find once I am in a showroom I can narrow down what will work for our customers. Obviously we have to be careful of weights of fabrics and certain colours that you know won’t sell but otherwise I try to go in with an open mind to view the new collections but always take into account our customers needs.
I also love getting my teams feedback because they know better than anyone what customers requirements are and what they are asking for so it is often a team effort.
What’s one piece of advice you would like to share with young up-coming entrepreneurial women?
The one piece of advice I would give to young and up and coming entrepreneurial women is to seize the opportunity when it arises. There is often no perfect time to start a business or change careers but sometimes you just have to take a leap of faith. I have found my best successes have followed when I have done this and taken that chance.
May 27, 2019