Since its formation in 2011, Keepsake the Label has provided a directional take on traditional forms of eveningwear. This was the intention of Australian Fashion Labels Creative Director Melanie Flintoft, who saw the need for high-end, price-pointed formalwear that still offered crisp lines and intricate detailing in luxe fabrics.
Keepsake is now stocked in respected retailers globally, including Bloomingdales, Nordstrom, Shopbop, Neiman Marcus, Revolve Clothing and David Jones, as well as a favourite amongst formalwear boutiques. Keepsake’s high-end appeal has found a following amongst celebrities and style icons, with Kendall Jenner, Reese Witherspoon, Gigi Hadid, Mila Kunis, Carrie Bickmore, Kristin Cavallari, Alexa Vega and Brittany Snow amongst its high profile supporters.
Keepsake Head Designer Carmen Dugan has grown with the label since the beginning, seeing it blossom into a strong representation of modern femininity by finding “the right balance between detail and simplicity in each garment”. Through Carmen’s dedication, exclusive prints, premium fabrics and an updated understanding of classic silhouettes has become the signature within any of Keepsake’s eleven annual collections. Moreover, the recent introduction of a range of intimates further compliments the label’s stance as one of luxury, indulgence and fragility. Carmen and her team are constantly challenging themselves to allow their customer to interact with their garments in a way that marries the aesthetic of the label with the wearer’s personal style. “The Keepsake girl can interpret high fashion trends in her own way,” explains Carmen. “That’s my favourite aspect of fashion – it’s not about what you wear but how you wear it and how it makes you feel. I want everybody to look and feel special every day.”
Carmen Dugan for Keepsake.
Acting as Head Designer since its formation in 2011 has meant that Carmen Dugan truly embodies the Keepsake girl. The fact that no Keepsake garment goes into final production unless Carmen is sure she would wear it herself is testament to her devotion to maintaining her label’s high-end aesthetic. Since joining Australian Fashion Labels after studying fashion design at a tertiary level, Carmen has seen Keepsake evolve from a label offering alternative party dresses to a meticulously compiled selection of modern eveningwear.
“I’m very proud of the high-end direction that Keepsake has taken,” says Carmen. “We’re still keeping the classic Keepsake aesthetic while offering some more fashion forward pieces.” Carmen’s attention to detail has ensured that the unique cuts and shapes that Keepsake employ set a new standard for eveningwear. “I love to think that within a Keepsake range there is the perfect piece for any girl’s special occasion. It’s wonderful thinking about the types of memories being created while wearing a Keepsake dress.”