Fashion’s resort season is arguably the best time to shop Australian and New Zealand brands. It’s when the runway collections that showed at fashion week in May start to trickle into stores. There’s party fever in the air as we gear up for end-of-year celebrations. And silhouettes that complement our laid-back lifestyle arrive in full force.
“Nomadic” is a common reference point for collections at this time of year. Whether you’re jetting off somewhere exotic or sticking closer to home this summer, there’s nothing stopping you from adopting a wandering state of mind in your wardrobe. With new collections landing almost daily, we’ve picked our highlights for the season ahead.
Lee Mathews adopts a surrealist perspective for its resort ’24 collection. The Lori shirt and pants – familiar silhouettes from the Sydney brand – feature a distorted floral print on fluid georgette. You can wear these pieces as a set or mix and match with separates. The textured Callas top and classic Stella silk T-shirt immediately spring to mind. The Lila dress and Calvin tank maxi prove Lee Mathews always does dresses well. And the brand’s current accessories offering includes woven totes from New York label Gabriele Frantzen.
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Technically a menswear brand, Commas crafts the kind of pieces you’d be forgiven for stealing from your significant other’s closet. The latest collection was shot on location in Budapest and celebrates bathing rituals and the therapeutic qualities of water. This boxy chore jacket and printed silk-and-cotton-blend shirt are two immediate highlights. But the Sydney label has also released a more feminine capsule this season, including handcrafted macrame pieces like this top and skirt. Androgynous suiting rounds out the resort release.
Sir has collaborated with LA-based artist Frankie Tobin for its latest drop. Organic shapes and colours taken from nature fill the capsule. This gathered skirt is an outfit building block – style it with the coordinating long-sleeve top, contrasting cropped silhouette or more pared-back pieces in your wardrobe. Accent your look with mismatched abstract earrings.
New Zealand brand Marle is sorting out your tomato girl summer wardrobe with its vermilion styles: the Iris skirt and Hanya dress are already set to sell out. An edit of crinkled linen pieces solves the age-old “how to stay cool but still look put together” conundrum – the Luca top and Alma sarong in clay make for an on-trend pairing. And the Euri dress in ivory, which features detachable straps, offers an elegant bridal option for low-key summer weddings.
Byron Bay brand St Agni is synonymous with resort style. And its signature minimalism is more pronounced than ever this season – the ’90s notes are unmissable. Black, white, beige and brown pieces from the collection are set to become seasonal cornerstones. This split-sleeve blazer refreshes an everyday favourite. The Sophia mini cues nostalgia. And these gauze pants showcase the subtlety in trending sheer silhouettes. The accessories offering is also on point: shoes and bags (particularly this knotted baguette) mirror the coveted ease of the ready-to-wear range.
Occasionwear favourite Alemais is delivering the kaleidoscopic collection that opened AAFW in waves. The Silas gown, Yvette midi and Daisy mini are already selling out on the brand’s own site – sign up for restock notifications or keep an eye on stockists like The Iconic. More runway favourites are arriving soon.
There’s relaxed allure in Bassike’s resort collection – an energy we’ve come to expect from the Sydney brand that calls the northern beaches home. A vintage floral print is splashed across a series of pieces – the slip dress or one-shoulder top will do for day or after-dark events. This cotton wrap miniskirt and pleated black strapless dress bring structure to the mix. There are tie-dye pieces to come and plenty of signature jersey styles to refresh your seasonal basics. And these raw leather slides are all you’ll want to wear.
Melbourne brand A Emery launched its debut ready-to-wear collection earlier this month. The range of “basic” items are made to be treasured, echoing the label’s pared-back footwear offering. Skirts are the star of the show: the Ven and Joan – which comes in black and beige – can be dressed up or down to suit the day.
Oroton’s latest collection is aptly named the Lure of Summer. There are nautical notes in pieces like the Boathouse striped dress and Callaway tote. A Dutch tulip print features across this camp collar shirt, skort and one piece swimsuit. And chocolate gingham means business when applied to this blazer and skirt suit. A poppy-red update to the Cinder baguette partners well with all of the above.
Maggie Marilyn’s debut at Australian Fashion Week in May was backdropped by Sydney’s Rushcutters Bay at sunset. A mix of classic stripes and feminine florals, which tapped into designer Maggie Hewitt’s memories of summers growing up in Auckland, looked right at home. The Gather the Girls dress and Dress That All the Bad Boys Like styles have finally delivered online and in the brand’s Paddington store, alongside a swimwear collaboration with Fella that was seen layered on the runway.
Local brand Blanca also made its first runway appearance on the schedule at Australian Fashion Week this year. Texture was the key takeaway from the collection shown at Carriageworks. Embroidered details, fringe trim and sheer fabrics set a new benchmark for the brand, which has become known for its signature striped shirting. There was also an influx of elevated soft tailoring styled with coordinating skirts and shorts. The first drop of the resort collection lands online this Friday, with more to come in November and December.
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