Kirrily Johnston.

Labels "dropping like flies": Kirrily Johnston. Photo: Lee Besford

An Australian women's fashion brand lamented local boutiques are "dropping like flies" in tough retail conditions as it announced it was entering voluntary administration.

Kirrily Johnston issued a statement on Wednesday to say that after 12 years a culmination of "GFC issues" and "manufacturing bad luck" had tipped the business over the edge.

"The boutiques who sell our collection are dropping off like flies on a weekly basis as everyone in retail is struggling" 

The designer also cited the high Australian dollar, high-street rents, the cost of local manufacturing and the pressure online sales were putting on bricks and mortar retail outlets as contributing factors.

Dress by Kirrily Johnston

Dress by Kirrily Johnston.

Ms Johnston said stressed retailers treated local wholesale orders as if they were trading on consignment and didn't pay and returned the stock if they over-ordered or had a few quiet months.

"The boutiques who sell our collection are dropping off like flies on a weekly basis as everyone in retail is struggling," Ms Johnston said in a statement.

Johnston has two stores in Sydney, one in Melbourne and is sold through David Jones and more than 70 boutiques nationally.

She said with no backer, she was uncertain what her future would hold.

AP

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