With several Australian brands like Zimmermann stealing the show at NYFW, I thought why not compile a starter guide? So that when you rattle off the top fashion cities of the world, Sydney (hah, or Melbourne) will grace the list alongside Milan, London, Tokyo and Paris. Most of these designers hardly need this report to reach international acclaim, with most boasting a fanbase of celebrities.
Bec & Bridge, the product of the friendship between Becky Cooper and Bridget Yorston. Their goal is fashion geared towards women through the base understanding of what they would need. (Pockets.. a million of those overlapping each other until they become the pants.) In addition, they strike the line of wearable whilst flirting with a unique edge to set you apart from the crowd. Their idiosyncrasy lies in contoured lines and sleek silhouettes which emanates from every fibre of the fabric, very clearly the creation of this decade's fashion. The brand has reached international acclaim and donned by the most respected editors and bloggers alike. What I liked most was a sheer jumpsuit that seemed to be cut out from the heavens above, it's almost as if you'd become a celestial being yourself.
What happens when cookie cutter is the furthest definition of what you are? Simple. Take Jessie White's example and create your own fashion line. Shakuhachi is a reflection of her own sense of style. Rejecting formal training, Shakuhachi was born out of her own instincts. Over the years, it's been fine-tuned, blossoming into a refined maturity. The highlight lies in silk dresses, leather and distinctive embellishments. The manifesto is clearly portrayed in its pieces. Structured shirts tucked into paper bag shorts for an effortless sophisticated air, tough leather softened into a dress and embracing femininity trough their patterned playsuits. It's the perfect medium for experimentation with neutrals and familiar textures to keep from the details from being too overbearing
Sass & Bide is far from delicate. It is as bold and unabashed as an unstifled warcry. Established in 1999 by best friends Sarah-Jane Clarke & Heidi Middleton, it's beginnings are marked selling bespoke denim in London before progressively transformed into an Australian phenomena and eventually, hitting the runways in New York and London. They are multidimensional, oscillating from wildly experimental to safe denim.
I would associate sass & bide to a sprinkle of pixie dust. When your outfit needs just that little touch of elevation. Case in point, the capelets above. Perhaps it's in the shoulders, but they seem to radiate with power and strength.
Stylestalker is the epitome of effortlessness. And what it wishes to become is you, with fifty levels of confidence. Led by creative director Sue-Ann San, Stylestalker desires to be all encompassing of styles internationally, in a casual attempt of world domination.
In my eyes, nothing can be defined as more effortless than knits. Thick jumpers you can hide under or throw on with disdained nonchalance. But all it takes is a careful pairing, preferably as unique or girly as possible that erases all traces of slovenliness.
The solution the world desires, Finders Keepers the Label provided with its polished style. It is protected from age due to its playful modern elements that inarguably marks it of this era. A spin on lines, a different interpretation on cutting, results in a yield that keeps it fresh and very wearable. Perfect for office environments and even a casual coffee date.
C/meo Collective aims to provide fashion of the future. Nothing screams more futuristic than bold shapes. With each collection, C/meo Collective is reinvented so that they can stand apart from one another. But together, a pioneer of fashion, embracing its mantra and projecting beyond current trends. C/meo Collective feels like a newly opened magazine. With its glossy pages and sharp faces that stare at you with piercing eyes. That level of elegance that seems to snap heads on the street. And yet, when the elements are isolated, it produces a level of approachability that anyone can obtain.
Scanlan Theodore is modern elegance. Impressively, since its conception in 1987 it has remained faithful to its aesthetic. A brand that very much caters to the needs of women, understanding that we are not a hive mind but intricately layered. Thus, every facet is addressed to help mould her into the person she wishes to be. It rejects time by becoming time itself. Lace, structured leather jackets a colour palette on the darker end of the spectrum... this is how it will outlive the apocalypse.
Aje, the lovechild of best friends Adrian Norris and Edwina Robnson. Effortless glamour, tough femininity and dishevelled elegance. Or the,' I just climbed three mountains simultaneously and I still look like a goddess'. The recycling of fashion is the rebirth of a phoenix. Always greater than its previous incarnation. A simple A-line skirt? Adorn it with sequins that beguile mesh. A bodycon skirt? How drab, make sure it's metallic and at the very least, please change the hemline to something of this era! but there's a reason why the full skirts of the 40s and structured shirts have transcended time, they result in undisputed grace.
Sophistication. Timeless classics. These are the foundations of Camilla and Marc. And from this, a fanbase of stylish young women emerged. Carefully structured lines that appear like marble sculptures, as though you're the walking embodiment of art. A well tailored blazer is the instant and ultimate way to introduce elegance. Even worn over a t shirt is a challenge to claim otherwise.
Youthful and feminine with underlying simplicity. No unnecessary embellishments. This is the label's purest definition of fashion. And the beauty of that is that it yields countless permutation. Do you maximise that vision with the barest of of styles? Or use that as juxtaposition contrasting it with the most wild of prints you can get your hands on against the soft canvas. At its core, Keepsake appears soft, but the interpretation is left to the whim of your own personal style.
Kelly Davies-Green, Maya Clemmensen & Scott Davies are the design trio behind Sydney based label, Maurie & Eve. Named after Kelly and Scott's stylish grandparents Maurie and Eve, the implication that it uses style inspiration from decades past woven into its design. Proving to provide a strong pillar in their contemporary use of textiles, colour and silhouette. High necklines are one of many examples of sampling from a past age but it is the reinvented cutting of the skirts that beguiles its contemporary leanings.
SIR is the foundation. A collection of minimalist elements whilst maintaining a feminine silhouette. Building upon fast trends and concreting them into everlasting fashion. Skirts with unusual drape, strong collars that sediment an outfit as well as a more subdued turtleneck for timeless looks and boats immense versatility.
Alice McCall is eclectic, in its embellishments, in its inspirations and yet, in spite of that, it remains a keepsake in one's wardrobe. McCall's roots began in London, selling one off pieces before securing a fanbase. The brand was born in 2004 and effectively launched at Australian Fashion Week.
sass & bide and alice McCall are cut from the same eccentric cloth. But the tones of s&b are richer, gold, back with heavier emphasis on wearable accents. alice McCall can be summed up as wonderland. Even that playsuit looks remarkably like a playing card. It's quirky and refreshing, a far cry from minimalism, the general preference of most Australian designers.
So that's your beginning course material for today. Compiling this together only made me realise the enormity of it all. I've really only barely scraped the surface. Ah and don't go on thinking that every Australian walks around wearing thousands of dollars worth of clothes, no, we're not all that wealthy. Which thus, only begs for more guides in the future.