Over the past two and a half years I’ve had the exciting, difficult and now sad task of opening and closing the Somerset Jane stores. Two beautiful and inspiring spaces that I poured my heart and soul into, and were for that time, the hub of all the label’s movements. They were the start of many changes and cemented the SJ brand on the local fashion scene. Or so I thought. Turns out, I am Somerset Jane, not the four walls it is housed in nor a sign outside a shop front. What I thought was ending was only just the beginning..
I sit today two shops down and a little lighter for it. This business, as with most things in life is about adapting and changing. As I walked out the spaces I once owned and practically lived in, I remembered painting the walls, excitedly purchasing the shop fittings, all the customers I’d met, the life stories they had told from behind the change room curtain. Memories too many to mention. That’s when I get slightly sad. It’s also when I realised I’ll have those shops forever, they’re marked in the history of Somerset Jane, not as a failed attempt but as the gateway to the next chapter. It’s not the time to reminisce, it’s the time to grow, to make and do and to create. And that’s just what I’ve done and will continue to do. So onwards and upwards for SJ which can now be found online and in seven other fabulous retailers around Johannesburg.
What did I learn? I learnt I can make brave decisions, and that sometimes waiting for life as it happens to force us to do so, isn’t the only time we need to or should. No Grit, no pearl, people.
Photos by Robyn Marshall
Models wear Coppelia Cropped Shirt/Fia Tank, and Wanda Wrap Trousers all available for pre order from our SS2016 collection.
Shonda Open Shoulder Dress from Winter 2016.