Annabelle Kennedy from Kennedy The Label speaks of running her fashion label on farm in Nyngan, Outback NSW.
When Dom asked me to marry him at 21, I knew I was in for a lifetime of compromise, my own Dad continuously reminded me I wasn’t just marrying Dom, but a third generation farmer and an isolated lifestyle or in other words a whole lot more than I possibly bargained for.
I hadn’t quite paved my way to a big career but I knew I could make it work. I knew as a team we’d manage to raise a family and somehow I’d combine my love for fashion and Dom’s love for farming.
I spent the first 5 years of being a new farmers wife and young mother, making smoko, doing harvest dinners and sketching out clothing designs in my down time.
It came with much trial and error but in 2017 after the birth of our second baby, Kennedy The Label went to production.
Born was a classic collection of luxury linen pieces for children and babies. Pieces I’d struggled to find in Australia for my own babies. Good quality fabrics, and timeless designs that could be worn and cherished then passed down to siblings or cousins.
When the drought became relentless , I knew my only option going forward was to continue to grow Kennedy The Label in hope it would be able to support our growing family - I couldn’t make it rain but maybe I could ‘take the heat off’ at home.
And grow it did. After years of side hustling Kennedy The Label became a full time running business, with manufacturing partners across three different countries. This success largely attributed to the exposure from the Buy From The Bush campaign. It seems our story resonated with so many Aussies just wanting to help a farmer out, and it gave our designs the boost required to become nationally recognised.
Twelve months ago I could never have imagined the rapid growth of Kennedy The Label and it was getting hard to foresee a time without drought. Yet here we are, running a small fashion house from our farm and harvesting 10,000 acres of mixed crops for the first time in over 3 years. And with baby number four due in December, they do say when it rains, it pours!