The business launched in Sydney in 2003, wholesaling nationally and internationally and retailing at unique boutique markets. During this time I consulted and collaborated with interior designers, architects and artists who fell in love with the Mandalay look and wanted to use it as part of their design aesthetic with their own clients. I also worked as an interiors consultant for private homes, boutique hotels, restaurant fit outs and a private yacht.
Mandalay has experienced a strong editorial presence the media, often featured in Vogue Living, Inside Out Magazine, Sydney Morning Herald Lift Out, The Age, Belle Magazine and House & Garden.
From 2009 to to June 2014 Mandalay had a retail presence in a 1950's industrial warehouse behind the iconic historic Kings Arcade in Armadale, Melbourne, Australia. Having a retail presence inspired me to return to Melbourne after 14 years away.
The future of Mandalay Designs is in fashion, textiles and home-wares. In working towards this goal I sold the Mandalay Rattan wholesale business in 2013.
Mandalay Designs' future is all about creative development, expression and collaboration with local and overseas artists, designers and merchandisers. We have a wholesale and retail presence online with the fashion and textile products. Our national and international agents wholesale our ranges and we also exhibit at a limited number of trade fairs through out the year. In addition to our online presence we have themed pop up stores peppered throughout the year.
ABOUT - EMMA STRAUSS
I am an artist, dreamer, collector, creator, designer and traveller. I honestly think at heart I am a gypsy. I am always aware of my surroundings and absorb colours, designs, nature and am constantly engaging on an emotional and creative level.
My first trip, at the age of 11 was to Fiji with a friend who's mother lived on an island there. This adventure was the beginning and cemented my intense love affair with the tropics, palm trees, shells, the ocean and everything topical.
Fashion and textiles is where my career began and I have come full circle. I have always loved mixing and matching unusual pieces collected from my global travels in the way I decorate my home or the outfits I wear.
The Mandalay Designs brand evolved from all of this nearly 15 years ago after my first holiday trip to Burma, now known as Myanmar. The evocative and sing-song name "Mandalay" resonated with me while I was there and continued to after reading Rudyard Kiplings poem, "The Road to Mandalay" and "Rebecca" by Daphne Du Maurier with the opening line in her book "Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again...I came upon it suddenly...there was Manderley, our Manderley, secretive and silent as it had always been..."
The Mandalay Designs brand continues to grow and I am so proud at how well recognised it has become.
DESIGNER AND DECORATOR
My role as an Interiors Design Consultant and Stylist continues to evolve across many fields for private homes, boutique hotels, restaurant fit outs, private yachts and commercial projects which have included retail fit-outs and designer trade-shows. in the past I have also collaborated with interior designers, architects and artists who fell in love with the Mandalay Designs "look and elclectic feel" which they wanted this interpretation as part of their design aesthetic with their own clients.