Most tourists pack their camera when they travel, Pamela Murray packed her sewing machine and left with a new career.
The catalyst for the brand, Pamalam, came shortly after the Dubliner quit her job, in 2018. She set her sights on Buenos Aires, a place that had captured her imagination since she was a teenager.
During her year-long stay, she met a group of women who inspired her to start her business.
“They were travelling the world and working from anywhere, which was something I had only thought possible in the digital space,” the founder said.
No stranger to travel, Pamela had initially learned to sew while setting up an arts organisation in the British overseas territory, St Helena.
Importing clothes was very expensive on the island and she arranged for the local seamstress to offer training.
“I ended up benefitting from the training myself,” said Pamela, who has a background in Theatre and Arts Management.
“I did some night courses in the Grafton Academy when I came back to Ireland and have been making and sewing things ever since.”
Having launched Pamalam in Buenos Aires in 2019, Pamela decided to keep her contemporary premium clothing brand online when she returned to Ireland.
This gives the one-woman sewing operation the flexibility to divide her time between her studio in Portobello, her work for Hubspot and her home office in Dun Laoghaire.
It also means that she will be meeting her customers for the first time since founding her brand, at Gifted, a contemporary craft and design fair, at the RDS from November 30 to December 4.
“I’m really excited for that face-to-face customer interaction, it’s something I’ve really missed from the process,” said Pamela.
Pamela puts what she earns back into Pamalam, investing in better technology to ramp up her “cottage industry.” Currently on maternity leave from Hubspot, Pamela’s new son, Hugo, may also be helping her to sell at her stall.
Pamalam champions the notion that all bodies are different and tailors its pieces to fit the shape of its customers.
“We use handmade and high-end fabric but try to keep a contemporary price point. I believe our clothes are a soft armour, where the best ones make us feel well, confident and equipped to be our true self.
“Owning my own brand has been such a great outlet to experiment; I have no strict boundaries on what I can create,” the founder commented.
As Pamalam uses a sustainable made to order model with its clothing, the brand’s accessories and homeware offerings will be highlighted at the fair.
Gifted will take place at Dublin’s RDS from Wednesday, November 30 to Sunday, December 4. Full details and booking can be found at www.giftedfair.ie.
Pamalam stock can also be purchased on Brindle, Lennox Street.
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