It’s about time that we give it up for the Australians. They’ve mastered the art of looking cool. Parisians tend to assume all the glory in this category, what with their tousled hair and artfully drop-crotched denim, but Australians do laid-back differently. Theirs is style for the low-tide; beach-aware if not somehow permanently beach-ready.
But it’s possible I’m projecting. I spent a semester overseas in college, and at age 25 I’m still referencing, “one time in Australia.” It was undoubtedly one of the best experiences of my life. The ocean was my only extra-curricular, I spent more time on sand than I did in class and everyone was nice.
In fact they were more than nice — they were genuinely kind, and oddly enough their mode of dress seemed to reflect their personalities just as easily as their tans absorbed the sun. Good style seemed inherent. It wasn’t calculated, just ingrained. My roommate, for example, had established a uniform of singlets and white tennis shoes with hip-slung denim shorts. There was absolutely nothing remarkable about the combination other than the fact that I’d never before seen someone whose own easiness translated an otherwise blasé outfit into a look.
If you could wear the adjective “mellow,” she did.
And so too do the women of current Sydney, obviously, as captured by photographers during Fashion Week Australia. I imagine their choices reflect the weather — humid and warm, but they’ve adapted — and I picture their process of getting dressed more a matter of what feels good rather than what is reportedly “in fashion” — which isn’t to say that trends are avoided, nor does it mean that statements aren’t being made.
Take the woman whose coat says “Sexsi” in a signage similar to Pepsi’s, or the one whose pink-fringed cape seems ready for takeoff to Outer space. They’re certainly saying something, it’s just that when I look at them knowing the context is Australia, I can’t help but imagine their accents connoting a very natural sense of “Oh this old thing?” And where trends are considered — check out the slideshow, they are — it’s as though Australians have figured out the very thing my roommate of Aussie yonder did: how to wear the attitude of mellow.
But like I said…for them, it must be inherent.