Nicole Kidman is the toast of Hollywood style and a fashion icon, which may explain the Aussie style buzz across Manhattan these days. Australian’s hottest designers are making a mark on New York and injecting the city’s stagnate retail market with a needed dose of down under therapy that goes beyond the hip Sass & Bide jeans and sexy Collette Dinnigan dresses. In search of newness and a prick of the exotic, boutiques in Manhattan are looking in the land where men plunder for the next crop of designer talent. Cantaloup on the Upper East Side is offering Australia’s best indie labels and favorites from Sass & Bide to Scanlan and Theodore. In the West Village, Elizabeth Charles carries only Australian designers. She stocks Easton Pearson (also heavily featured at uber retailer L’Eclaireur in Paris), Wayne Cooper, MIMCO, Third Millennium, and the much adored Bond’s t-shirts. One of Australia’s edgier and most revered designers, Akira Isogawa, can be found at Barneys NY and the trendy IF Boutique in Soho. Shoe enthusiasts should look out for a new array of stilettos by Terry Biviano. Australia’s fashion press has dubbed her Australia’s Manolo Blahnik. According to the Sydney Herald Tribune, the theatrical show she put on during Australian fashion week made quite an impression on Baz Luhrmann, you know, that other hot Aussie export.
- Jenny Moda
Photo: Easton Pearson spring 2003