The Pet Shop Girls boutique opened two years ago, upstairs at Melbourne’s Curtain House. The people behind the shop, Chiara Ippoliti and Sheena Sexton, select bright, avant-garde Japanese fashion from labels such as Tsmori Chiatso, Zucca, Merci Beaucoup and Né-Net.
The PSG duo has collaborated with Stephanie Downey, designer of Australian label Dress Up, to create a capsule collection entitled Au Fait. It hints at, “the very many Gallic (and almost Gallic) beauties that frequently inform our wardrobe,” says Downey. Think plaid pinafores, polo necks, boucle minis and matching jackets that channel a young Parisienne studying poetry at the Sorbonne in the ’70s.
The focal point of the collection is the Bande à Part pinafore, inspired by the 1964 Nouvelle-Vague film of that name directed by Jean-Luc Godard. “The girls wanted a pinafore that was schoolgirl-like, but still grown up,” explains Downey. “I [made] it a bit more subtle and more wearable than a literal translation.”
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Using signature details from her own label, such as the folded pocket, and the kimono cut, Downey’s cutting precision has achieved pieces that have the PSG quirk, but are a nod to French chic.
The Pet Shop Girls x Dress Up capsule collection is available in store and online at petshopgirlsshop.com