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Love to love … DUKE n co

Introducing the Australian label giving back.

Meet the designer: Georgina Akkou. 

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The DUKE n co woman knows what she wants. And, more importantly how to get it. With long, clean lines and a classic black-and-white palette, it’s eveningwear with a touch of Hollywood glamour – all now on But there’s more: a percentage of each sale goes toward buying real resources for the Tanzanian Children’s Fund.

When DUKE n co Designer and Founder Georgina Akkou talks about designing, she talks about grace, about elegance. Her designs are made for seducing. Each piece is beautifully lined, with a need-to-have texture. 

“I’ve always been a big believer in quality over quantity in all aspects of life, particularly my wardrobe,” she tells us. “All of our gowns are lined and made to fit like they were tailored for your body.”

Only one season in, Akkou has seen celebrities dressed in DUKE n co and is fast becoming a must-have wardrobe essential. With a collection fronted by international model Megan Blake-Irwin, Akkou sketches each piece and sources the fabrics herself 

When asked where she finds inspiration, she smiles. 

“Anything and everything.”

First up: fabrics.

“I’m obsessed with fabrics. Sometimes I will buy a dress simply because I like the fabric so much. Then I’ll pull the dress apart and make it my own.”

Also: from movies, from books – most recently from the 1958 romantic comedy Gigi. 

“I think I was born in the wrong era, dresses in the 1950’s were to die for! I always have my sketch pad out with any film I watch and I like to draw inspiration from different eras, styles and people. ” 

She’s a collector of images, a scrap-booker even, with her photo roll on her phone always fit to burst. And her latest obsession?

The Fresh Prince of Bel Air,” she laughs. “I mean, some of Hilary’s gowns … They are ridiculously eccentric but also absolutely amazing. The heavy gold buttons and luxe detailing – you can’t help but love her fashion choices.”

The end of this year will see Akkou head to Tanzania for two weeks to make DUKE n co’s resource donation and volunteer her time at the Tanzanian Children’s fund orphanage.

“I was lucky enough to grow up in Australia, where I have a myriad of opportunities available to me, whilst others grow up without access to any form of education or health services. I’ve always had an imperative urge to change this, to stop simply accepting that things are the way they are. I didn’t want DUKE n co to be a company that simply make a charitable donation at the end of the financial year, I wanted our customers to see that every purchase they make, every dollar they spend, has a tangible impact. I firmly believe that we can better people’s lives through business, it may in fact be the most powerful tool we have for improving the world.” 

“DUKE n co works on a one for one basis, whereby each DUKE n co purchase equates to a medical or educational resource donated to the Tanzanian Children’s Fund. The fund is a not-for-profit organisation providing access to education, free healthcare and microfinance trainings and loans in the Karatu region of northern Tanzania.” 

Her obsession with Tanzania all started with a geography project.

“In year seven one of my geography projects was to pick any country in the world and research its culture, socio-economic aspects and political systems and I just randomly went with Tanzania. The country has been an obsession ever since.”

The rest, she smiles, is DUKE N CO.