Behind the Brand: Yael Star, Creative Director of Edward Meller

Yael Star, Creative Director of Edward Meller, looks back on the brand’s incredible legacy and shares her vision for the future.

Yael Star is proud to be part of the family business.

After opening its first store in Sydney in the mid-’50s, Australian shoe brand Edward Meller was purchased by Raphy Star and his cousin Phillip Shulmann nearly 30 years later. Since then, the brand has become known for its purpose-designed, fashion-forward footwear – a tradition Star’s daughter Yael continues today as Edward Meller’s creative director and CEO. Here, she chats with JONES about the joys and challenges of continuing her father’s legacy.

Edward Meller is a family business. What is it like to be part of a brand with such a rich and storied heritage?

Growing up in a family business, you can take for granted what an impact a brand with such a long history can have. It was only really when I joined the company, a bit over 25 years ago, that I came to truly appreciate it. It is so exciting to now have my own daughter involved in the business as we continue to grow and evolve so that a whole new generation of customers can make Edward Meller memories

What is most important to you when building a new collection?

I look to our customers’ needs first. I spend a lot of time on the shop floor, engaging with our clientele to understand what they’re looking for. Like me, our customers are often balancing a family, career and hectic life. They value comfort and quality, and they care about looking and feeling great. They want something functional and fashionable that works across many areas
of their busy lives. All this factors in when building out a collection. We consider every piece’s place in the collection and what it can bring to the table. We know our customer trusts us to be a destination for all their footwear needs – casual to formal and everything in between – so we endeavour to exceed this expectation.

Where do you look for inspiration?

Inspiration comes from all aspects of life.
Travel plays a big part in informing each
collection, especially my time in Europe.
Whether it’s shopping the newest designer
collections or local boutiques, visiting the
shoe fair, walking the streets or just sitting
and people-watching in a cafe, bar or hotel
lobby, there’s so much to take in and be
inspired by. Fashion, of course, often sets
the tone for the collection, too: we focus
on interpreting international trends in an
accessible way for the Australian consumer.

What is the biggest misconception about
the brand?

That we skew more mature in our style or
are prohibitively expensive. The opposite is
actually true. We focus on creating timeless
investment pieces that, while fashionable,
will remain relevant for years to come.
We don’t cater to an age bracket but
rather a sense of e!ortless style that can
be embraced by anyone.

What does the future hold for Edward Meller?

It’s hard not to imagine all the possibilities, but I like to keep it grounded in the present and just really focus on delivering the very best collection season after season. As my daughter learns the ropes by my side, I imagine a future where we are always bettering ourselves and where I can one day hand the reins onto the next generation.



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