Thursday, 24 May 2012


The PITCH team were among many that recently despondently farewelled the The Bunker Boutique. This renowned Brisbane store specialised in “bridging the gap between emerging designers and the fashion and design marketplace.” A laneway off George Street in the CBD  led one to a  large, aesthetically striking room that displayed a range of local designer and international labels – brands such as We Are Lost, Flint and Injury. “Aesthetics and the feel of the shop should be as important as what you’re trying to sell,” insists the owner Jordan Iovenitti, who opened the space at just eighteen. 

Eighteen months later, on the morning of The Bunker’s last day, I met Jordan for a coffee. My first question was the one on the lips of Brisbane’s fashion enthusiasts – why? Jordan, polite, well spoken, and observably passionate about his work, explained. “We have a huge Victorian following online, which is why I want to move to Melbourne, maybe via Sydney.”

The good news for Brisbane is that Jordan’s online store will continue – just one of many creative initiatives he is currently juggling. In addition to blogging for the online store, he maintains a personal blog, Jaw Lines. “It has a raw feel to it, a bit edgier, I could say a few things there I wouldn’t say in the bunker environment... It’s my individual personal style… what I’m liking in the fashion world, day to day life, tantrums, just what I’m digging. I want to get a great online following and expand The Bunker store [blog] and my individual blog, before relaunching the physical side of The Bunker again.” Jordan also currently models for the online Universal Store, stressing that a point of view from both sides of the lens is beneficial. “It’s another way of getting to know about fabrics, how they all fall and get captured”. This energetic combination of blogging, modelling, and running an online store, augurs well for a prolific career.

Jordan is grateful for the platform Brisbane afforded. “We are a smaller city, but we’re just bursting at the seams with younger creatives.  There’s so much emerging talent… and because we’re not as big, it can shine through.”

Though the boutique is ending its era, Jordan has the satisfaction of knowing that it did help bridge that aforementioned gap between emerging designers and the marketplace. “What I have found with The Bunker, and supporting young designers, is that obviously not everyone makes it, but it’s great to see so many make a name for themselves and get a foot in the industry.”

As Brisbane accepts the loss of another talented creative to the cities down south, Melbourne and Sydney should keep a close watch on where The Bunker Boutique might pop up next.  “I would love to have an online store and a physical store in each city.”

“It can only get better - with more amazing labels on the way.”