In a fashion industry where a drop culture, limited-quantity collections and out-of-print items are ubiquitous, getting your hands on the hottest pieces in fashion has become the hunt of a lifetime. But a buyer created a booming business by sourcing these hard-to-find items and even attracting star-studded customers.
Meet Gabriel Waller, an Australian buyer specializing in sourcing out of stock and high demand parts for customers around the world. With over 40,000 subscribers, Waller has become the go-to luxury personal shopper for customers looking for brands like Chanel, Bottega Veneta, Prada, and more.
The 27-year-old grew up in Rockhampton, Queensland but moved to Sydney to pursue a career in finance. After getting a job in a boutique, Waller fell in love with shopping, before going on her own after seeing a void for luxury items in the Australian fashion market. of pieces compared to what falls in Parisian or American stores. I would drive through Los Angeles and see so many luxury pieces that Australia doesn’t have. That’s when I knew there would be a market and a demand for it, ”Waller said.
When starting his business, Waller took to Instagram to showcase his work. Her biggest challenge, she recalls, was getting retailers to trust her: “I faced a lot of rejections. I didn’t have a huge purchase history. This is where it was about being a really good, genuinely passionate person. This is how I built a lot of my relationships. I used my Instagram as a portfolio to say “Hey, this is what I do. I have great customers who shop with me. I’m worth your time, ”Waller said. Today, she has a global list of multi-brand stores and retailers in cities from Tokyo to Paris, a database she calls her brand’s “bread and butter”. It was through this knowledge and data that she developed an unparalleled sense of where to find some of the most coveted pieces in the fashion industry: “I would find something for a client and she would tell his friend, and the next minute this friend arrives to request it. I saw this demand very early on and the power of word of mouth gave us legs, ”Waller said.
The company faced a watershed in 2019 when the model and celebrity Rosie Huntington-Whiteley posted on his Instagram asking his followers to help him get a vintage Celine coat. When Waller saw the message, she instantly knew she could find it, but had no way to reach the model. Through a mutual friend, Waller was linked to the model and bought the coat from her at a small boutique in Copenhagen, an achievement that would later become a key moment in the buyer’s career. A few months later, the coat was posted to Huntington-Whiteley’s 13.7 million followers, crediting Waller for the supply and instantly propelling his Instagram page to the forefront of millions of fashion lovers. That day, her social media page was overflowing with inquiries, Waller recalls: “I often say that this moment completely changed the meaning of my career and my life. It has opened so many doors. Her business has grown 830% since then and she has amassed a large following of celebrity names like Hailey Bieber To Chiara Ferragni.
For Waller, no item is too hard to find. Its business is extremely fast, typically filling an order in less than 48 hours. His customers send requests via direct message or Instagram email, Waller connects with his team and sends his customers a quote for the product with his fees. From there, it’s a mad rush to find who has it first. She publishes her findings alongside the hashtag #SourcedbyGW, a sign of her success and her ability to make exclusivity available. Waller says Chanel is hands down his most requested brand in his business: “When Chanel releases a new collection, we’ll immediately jump on pieces because we’ve seen it time and time again – they sell out. She also mentions brands like Amina Muaddi and Prada as being highly coveted by its customers, crediting their ability to market globally and sell quickly. While “exhausted” for a client can be disheartening, for Waller it has become the driving force and thrill of his career to watch collections and go hunting.
Earlier this month, Waller moved her main office from Sydney to Los Angeles, where she hopes to grow her business and celebrity clientele. The United States is currently its fastest growing market and its goal is to streamline the process to systems as simple as invoicing in US dollars versus Australian dollars. She aims to create a place where her customers can chat with her face to face and also offers more services, such as immediate shipping parts. When asked about her success, Waller says that authenticity, reputation and personalization are the most crucial: “Personal relationships in my world are the most important thing. I believe a lot in positive energy and positive action and I value them in my business and with my clients. When I work with me, every client is a VIP.
Follow Gabriel Waller on Instagram.