Meet the Maker: Lisa from Sad Jane

Meet Lisa Henderson the creative behind ‘Sad Jane’. Lisa creates original and unique fashion items for the colourful and young at heart.
Given her first sewing machine at 13 she would cut up old outfits and restyle them. Through the years she has focused on many different areas in fact when Sad Jane started to transition from a hobby into a small business, Lisa was moving in the direction of crafts, painting and printmaking - which she’s sure I'll revisit again at some point. All she knew is that her love for fashion, arts and making, were always there. Sad Jane has now been running in a fashion retail environment for about 3 years. And she’s only upgraded that first sewing machine in the last few – it certainly did her well!
When asked how and why did she started her business, Lisa recalls her very first market experience as a part of PropelARTS in conjunction with Youth Week – which was a free opportunity for young people to try their hand at selling their creations. ‘It felt amazing to take my hobby out of my spare room and actually have people buy some of it!’

From then she simply continued making things until her spare room was no longer a spare room, but resembled a clothes horse not to mention part of her parents’ home too. It was time for un upgrade!
Luckily enough Lisa happened to come across an affordable space in the city that would mean she could not only have a work space, but also the opportunity to retail from it as well. ‘I saw the little shop that was for lease and thought BOOM! Let’s jump in and do it.’

Admittedly she says she was thinking ‘purely from the heart and had no business plan or anything at this point - it's funny, it just sort of happened.’
You can now visit Lisa in the Bon Marche Arcade, 80 Barrack Street Perth. With her studio space in the shop, people can come in and see where it all happens whilst they browse. Once something is finished, it goes straight onto the rack! She is quick to say she’s a bit of a procrastinator and working away from home has worked very well for her – we think so too!
Lisa is a true creative to the essence of the word. She has deep appreciations for different genres of music, as she finds that music can really push her in a certain creative direction when allowed. She finds experiencing other art forms particularly inspirational as well – “it's great to feel lifted by appreciating real creatives, whether its fashion designers, visual artists or film.”
It’s her creative nature and her absolute LOVE of all things vintage and retro that truly inspire her. ‘I am heavily inspired by the 60's flower power era and use a lot of vintage fabrics in my work (when I'm not procrastinating about cutting them) I tend to collect bright fun fabrics when I see them, and I allow the fabrics to inspire me rather than making the fabrics fit in with me.’
Lisa loves being a part of the phenomenally talented creative makers scene in Perth and she says that not only does she sell her wares at Perth Makers Market but she often leaves with a bunch of goodies too. ‘What's great about getting involved with the local community is that you can actually engage with the person behind the product. Many of us have 'day jobs' as well as our businesses, and by getting to know the human that makes the products, you can really appreciate the hard work that's put into it.’
As for the future of Sad Jane and Lisa’s visions,m she takes a very practical approach as do many of our makers. She would be happy to live comfortably from her business, being able to her support herself and her family and dreams of a well-balanced future. To her this means a lifestyle whereby her business fits into her life - rather than running her life. Good goals to have!
‘There is something special and rewarding about making something with your own hands, whether it's a dress, a piece of pottery or even building a home. For me the satisfaction comes from the fact that your efforts created something. I'm not sure why I ended up in the area of making clothing in particular, but I'd say it stems from the initial desire to make funky outfits for myself and I enjoyed the process so much that I just kept going.’
‘I also found it hard to find fashion that was affordable, yet unique and FUN! So, I decided to make my own.’
Lisa has a couple of words of wisdom for fellow makers and business owners that she has learnt along the way. ‘Firstly, it’s not always rainbows and unicorns, some days you might not feel motivated and some days you might question why you even bother. Just because you're making a business from something you love, doesn't mean that you are going to love it all of the time. I feel it’s important to know that THIS IS OK, and that you don't need to put pressure on yourself all of the time. Secondly, say YES to opportunities when they arise (if you can) you never know what can come from it. Also, collaborate with others and get to know other small business owners and makers - I really believe we are in this ship together and supporting those around is beneficial to us all.’



Where to find Sad Jane?

We love having Lisa and her ‘Sad Jane’ stall at our markets! As mentioned before you can also find her sewing away in her shop front and studio at Bon Marche Arcade, 80 Barrack Street Perth!   Not to mention find her online at her website Sad Jane through her Facebook or on Instagram.