How long have you lived in Sydney?
I moved here 9 years ago from London, where I was living in Clapham. I had always loved Sydney and spent quite a bit of time here over the years with friends and family. After 5 years in my old job and a long UK winter i felt it was time to live by the beach and see what Australia had to offer. I now live in North Bondi, right up on the cliff at Ben Buckler overlooking the ocean. I couldn’t be blessed with a better view or sound to wake up to every day.
How would you describe Sydney style?
It’s a high mix of fashion, relaxed beach style and glowing skin. The Sydney Style is certainly affected by the proximity to the sand and shoes at times seem optional in some suburbs!
What differences have you noticed between the ways Australians dress and the way British women dress?
Australians love European fashion and luxury labels, but it’s mixed back with denim and easy pieces. There’s less need for black opaque tights and fabulous coats, but more opportunity to show skin.
Does style change from neighbourhood to neighbourhood as it does in London?
Yes. The style from beach suburbs such as Bronte, Tamarama or Bondi is very different from Glebe or Newtown. There’s a real mix of super dressed up girls in the city to habitual denim short wears and also a hippy influence. You can spot the Mossman mums with expensive diamonds in the Eastern suburbs and the glamour girls of the west who are all nails and lashes.
Do you think that Australian women are led by trends or do they tend to have a distinct Aussie look?
Women in Sydney are hugely influenced by the catwalk and styles from overseas, but they tend to be worn in an Australian way with tanned limbs and sunglasses.
How has your style changed since living in Sydney?
I think my hair is messier! My look is probably a little less polished and more influenced by the surroundings but I shop every time I am back in the UK and avidly online for designer pieces. I am very fashion focused, just more relaxed about how i put things together
Are there any big ‘no-no’s’ when it comes to style in Australia?
UGG boots outside the house! They are strictly for indoors. This is totally different from how I felt in the UK when I would not prise them from my feet in cold weather.
What do you think is lacking when it comes to style/fashion in Australia (if anything)?
The only thing that annoys me is the price for European labels. I wish I could buy them here for the same price as home. It definitely curbs my spending habits and makes me think about which pieces I really want.
Is there more, less or just as much pressure to look good in Sydney as there is in London?
There is more skin on display so there’s definitely more pressure to be groomed as you can’t hide your pale and unshaved legs. Plus looking good on the beach is always a killer…
When going out for dinner or drinks do women get more or less dressed up than they do in London?
It is still dressed up here. I would either wear a dress and heels or a dressed up leather or denim short with heels and handbag. I live in Equipment silk shirts, neuw denim and have an unrelenting passion for Isabel Marant footwear and Alexander Wang. I’m keeping it more simple in more old age.
What would you wear on a relaxed Saturday?
Have you discovered any amazing Australian labels since living there?
Where do Australian women go for basics?
Bassike for tops, neuw for jeans and I love jumpers from Jac and Jack
Where’s your favourite shopping area in Sydney and why?
I love shopping on Gould Street at Bondi, Westfield City, The Intersection in Paddington, which features all of the key Australian designers’ shops. Boutique-wise I am always in The Corner Shop in Paddington scoping out the Kenzo and Isabel Marant, and Tuchuzy in Bondi Beach which sells Alexander Wang, Helmut Lang and Rag and Bone etc
THE BODY BEAUTIFUL…
Do Australian women place more or less emphasis on beauty than British women?
Australians really care about their beauty from organic skincare brands such as MV Organic Skincare and Jurlique to weekly manis and pedis. I look after the PR for The Bronzing Boutique in Double Bay and they are constantly booked solid for regular spray tans as Sydneysders want glowy skin without the skin-cancer. There is a big emphasis on grooming here (such as the perfect eyebrows) – I think more so than in the UK.
As a rule do Australian women wear more or less make-up than British women?
I think it is the same. Maybe slightly different make up to cope with the climate
What is the Australian attitude to the body? Do they exercise more than British women?
You are more likely to see people exercise here as it is all outdoors. There are lots of boot camps on the beach here in the morning, yoga, Pilates and people running on the sand before work. The pressure to stay in shape is probably larger here due to the fact that there’s less clothing to hide behind.
What is the Australian attitude to eating? Is it stricter or more relaxed than British women’s?
It depends on the season. Australian women probably stick closer to healthy foods over summer, but everyone I know has a healthy appetite for good fresh food. It’s probably more about the quality than the quantity.