Former archaeologist Rachel Jones is an expert when it comes to good finds and has turned her discerning eye to the creation of Eocene. A scientific precision is evident in the grid of carefully selected garments that sit like artefacts in a museum cabinet on the clean white homepage.
“I don’t have any background in the fashion industry,” confesses Jones, who started building the site with the help of her partner, software developer Walter Davidson. “I originally developed the concept for the store when we were living in London a few years ago. We were buying almost all of our clothing online and at the time online shopping in Australia was pretty behind, a lot of internationals weren’t shipping to Australia and if they were it was very expensive.”
Eocene takes its name from a geologic period and stocks goods that Jones has dug up on buying trips to London, Paris and New York. This includes collections from established designers Opening Ceremony, Peter Jensen and House of Holland who boast large international followings but limited exposure in Australian retail stores. “Not being widely available in Australia is probably the first quality we look for in a product to stock,” explains Jones. Eocene’s free express delivery on these items gives an immediacy to online shopping that is missing from international competitors.
Eocene’s collection of up-and-coming labels currently includes Still Good, New York CDFA winner Timo Weiland and South African handmade desert boots by Brother Vellies. About selecting these Jones says, “It’s definitely personal taste. We pick things we would wear. We also look at the quality of the items and weather we think they have potential to grow because we particularly like emerging brands.”
Jones is currently focused on expanding Eocene into menswear. “We think it is pretty underrepresented in Australia in the mid-to high-end sphere, so we’d like to bring some more menswear in. There are brands we have our eye on.” With plans to add new labels to its repertoire each season, Eocene is one to watch for innovative, high-quality designer shopping.