Jenny Kee was born in 1947 and is one of the most unique Australian fashion designers. She grew up in New South Wales. Her grandparents migrated to Australia during the gold rush of the 1870s. She attended the Easy Sydney Technical College, but it was not there that she completed her studies in fashion. When she was 18, she left the sphere of Sydney and headed to London.
Her career in fashion started with modelling, and she was at one time the face of advertisements for Canadian Pacific Air Lines. She started her life’s calling by selling clothing to hippies at a London antique market. She returned to Australia in 1972, and then in 1973, she opened her own fashion boutique named Flamingo Park. It was here she began to collaborate with Linda Jackson, another famous Australian fashion designer.
Her partnership with Jackson produced many uniquely bright and colourful outfits that were knitted from pure Australian wool. They used local flora and fauna emblems in many of the works they produced, and one of them based on a koala was famously worn by Princess Diana.
The state plant of New South Wales, the waratah, was strongly featured in much of her work. Both Kee and Jackson worked with many artists, and Kee’s designs were incorporated into some of the first Chanel works by Karl Lagerfeld.
She published an autobiographical account of her Swinging London days in 2006. Eventually, in 2018 she was ordered with the Order of Australia, commemorating her contribution to Australian fashion and the arts.
She was once married Michael Ramsden, and they split after 21 years. She also had a relationship with Danton Hughes, who committed suicide in 2001. She and her daughter are also survivors of the tragic Granville rail disaster.