As most of you who follow the blog will know by now, Lady Petrova is one of my favourite brands. It goes beyond the exquisite designs, though. Petrova Hammond, the woman behind it, is actually one of my biggest inspirations. The first time you meet her, there’s no chance you will be able to walk away without being impacted by her fairy-like persona, or at least her incredible orange hair à la Little Mermaid. She is the personification of her brand, a beautiful unicorn that makes you believe in glittery magic in the middle of a real-world grey metropolis. But don’t be mistaken by her love of everything girly – Petrova is one of strongest women I know, who’s built her cult brand from scratch and now runs one of the most quintessential Melbourne labels.
I like to refer to her Flinders Lane shop as my happy place. Whenever I’m in the city and need a little pick me up, I’ll pay her a visit. I’ve lost count of the times I went in there just after an exam, when I was having a particularly bad time or hadn’t left my house in a week for being sick. Of course it makes me feel better just by being around pretty things, but the main reason why the boutique always puts a smile on my face is Petrova herself. I always lose track of time in there. In between playing dress-ups, we’ve talked about any and every thing, from the latest Downton Abbey episode to my struggles deciding what to do with my life. She always knows what to say and is ready to make good on her mission of empowering girls. Everything in her shop celebrates women, and Petrova makes a point of helping other girls succeed. All the artwork on the walls are by female artists; she stocks starting-up labels designed by unique girls and she also collaborates with many other women while designing her own collections.
So when she told me she was creating the School of Fabulousness, I couldn’t be more proud or excited for her. Other than being an excellent idea for empowering girls, this is also yet another way Petrova found of keeping her business relevant. She is now offering classes on a range of topics from learning how to make flower crowns (one of the staples of her brand from the very beginning) to modern-day etiquette. Petrova will be making the transition from designer to motivational speaker for groups of up to fifteen girls, with whom she will impart her wisdom after many years in the business, surrounded by cupcakes on a secret rooftop location in the Melbourne CBD. One of the highlights is her Business Series, born out of a desire of helping fellow special snowflake creatives to make it in the fashion industry. She feels like many girls need an outside of the box type of mentoring, since most schools these days focus on what’s mainstream and traditional, suffocating creativity in the process.
You can enrol in all of the classes on the Lady Petrova website. They are:
Finding You & Your Style: May 9th, $140
Create A Flower Crown: February 14th, $110
How To Be Creative & Fabulous: May 2nd, $110
Crystal Jewellery Class: April 18th, $110
Starting A Fashion Business*: February 28th, $110
Fashion Design 101*: March 14th, $110
Social Media Socialite*: March 28th, $110
How To Create A Cult Brand*: March 21st, $110
Production, Pricing & Planning*: April 11th, $110
Modern Etiquette For The Urban Princess: May 9th, $150 (high tea included)
*The Business Series can be paid individually or as a $480 package for all five classes.
I highly recommend going to at least one of the classes if you can. I was dying to go to the “Create A Flower Crown” one, but unfortunately I’ll have to work. Hopefully I get to go to at least “How To Be Creative & Fabulous” or “Social Media Socialite”. Maybe I’ll see you there too! ;)
To hear Petrova talk more about her latest venture, check out the interview she gave to the Melbourne In Fashion podcast. To keep up with all of the School of Fabulousness updates, follow her on Instagram and like her Facebook page.
(Header image via Kelsey Genna)