Donna Sheridan Is a Fitzroy Hair Salon Specialising in Effortless, ’70s-Era Cuts (and Bangs)

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Before opening a shop of her own, hairdresser Donna Sheridan was working at a chain salon. “There was no real growth or direction or freedom there, when you have client after client,” she says.

So, in 2016 Sheridan converted an old bathroom in a shared Collingwood warehouse space into a little studio. “It really took off,” she says. “I was just going to work in there part-time, but so quickly lots of people wanted to come for the one-on-one experience.”

The following year, Sheridan opened her namesake salon in a Fitzroy backstreet and continued honing a signature style that’s all about effortless, natural styles with a ’70s edge. Think Bridget Bardot’s soft, split bangs and messy up-dos; Farrah Fawcett’s feathery waves; Jane Birkin and Joni Mitchell’s brow-skimming bangs and Jane Fonda’s iconic shaggy, layered look.

“The ’70s was an era where more people were experimenting with new things,” Sheridan says. “The women’s rights movement made significant strides during this decade and women were expressing themselves radically in very innovative, cool and sexy ways. Thankfully resulting in some incredibly iconic looks still relevant today.”

The team is dedicated to a one-on-one experience, which means stylists will give you their full attention without dancing between other clients.

“We spend a lot of time finding out the best style to suit our customers – the perfect fringe length, layers and length to highlight their face,” she says. “It’s my favourite part about the job because we can create true expression. And customers walk out feeling sexy and confident. Maybe it’s that ’70s mentality shining through.”

Donna Sheridan is part of Sustainable Salons, a program that repurposes salon waste and donates the proceeds to charities. Recycling bins separate paper, plastics, hair, metal and chemicals, and plastics are later recycled into new product packaging and outdoor furniture, hair clippings can be used in compost, and ponytails are turned into wigs for cancer and alopecia sufferers.

An exposed brick wall highlights the blonde timber and camel-coloured leather seating of the salon. Rattan furniture and greenery – including an impressively tall fiddle-leaf fig – add softness to the otherwise white-walled space.

Tea is by The Fitzroy Naturopath and coffee comes from Pods & Parcels who specialise in biodegradable coffee pods.

“I’m just really conscious to create a really relaxed environment,” Sheridan says. “Not only for the clients, but also for the girls that work here.”

Donna Sheridan
71 Kerr Street, Fitzroy
(03) 8415 1348

Mon 10am–5pm
Tue & Thu 9am–8pm
Wed 9am–6pm
Fri & Sat 9am–5pm

Mimi Move Is a New Size-Inclusive Aussie-Born Activewear Collection That’ll Have You Feeling Good as Hell

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Partners Madalin Frodsham and Sid Pattni launched swimwear label Mimi Kini in 2018, making togs that are chic, inclusive and sustainable. Last week, the pair added Mimi Move to their repertoire. It’s a retro-inspired activewear collection celebrating bodies sized XS to 6XL.

“I’ve worked with a few different activewear brands in the past,” says Frodsham, a fitness influencer (Pattni is a former art teacher). “I really just saw a niche in the market for sustainable activewear that was available in a wide variety of sizes. And that wasn’t just black or navy.”

Mimi Move is all about feeling cute while working your butt off. Pattni designs the prints – they come in pastel pink, soft grey and blue-green – and Frodsham takes care of garment design. Once samples are made, Frodsham makes adjustments according to how they fit on her body.

“Then I also send them off to a fit-model who is a size 3XL, and we get those measurements made to her as well,” she says. “They do fit differently on different bodies.”

The latest addition to Australia’s booming activewear industry, Mimi Move pieces are designed to be sweat-proof (breathable and sweat-patch resistant) and squat-proof (sitting and stretching well with your body as you move).

“Even though I know we’re not fully inclusive, because there are some people who can’t fit into our clothing, we just wanted to make the best effort that we could,” Frodsham says. “Fitness is such an enjoyable part of life, and I wanted to make sure that everyone felt they could be part of it.”

And she says Mimi Move isn’t just for performance – it’s brunch appropriate, too. “I really wanted something that would still look cute when you’re going out and that could actually function really well.”

Since launching the label last week, Pattni says the high-rise Move shorts have been the biggest seller. The silky-soft fabric sits at a length suitable for strenuous activity without the “booty ride-up”, and there’s a zip pocket at the back to store your valuables.

“I know a lot of girls used to say, ‘I won’t wear shorts to the gym because of my cellulite or because I’m worried about how my size looks’,” Frodsham says. “But now more and more women are being like, ‘You know what? I don’t really care about that. I’m going to be hot in the gym. I want to wear something that moves with me.’”

The collection also includes a double-lined crop-top for extra support and ankle length leggings with a high-rise waist. Everything is priced between $59 and $99.

All Mimi Kini and Mimi Move pieces are made from recycled polyethylene, a material made from reclaimed plastic bottles. The duo recently visited the ethical, family-run factory in Guangzhou, China where the garments are manufactured, and tweaked the fabric to ensure that each piece was as sustainable as possible.

“We’re just hoping to get more women into activewear and feeling more comfortable and confident in their own skin,” says Frodsham.

Posse, the Australian Resort Label Born From a Love of Vintage Shopping

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Danielle Mulham’s resort wear label, Posse, began with the idea of irreplaceability. She loves vintage, particularly the kind of pieces that occupy a place in your wardrobe forever. So when she was putting her range together, she found herself drawing on the classics.

“There were ‘forever elements’ I wanted to pull from different [vintage] pieces, such as an incredible puff sleeve detail. I’m also drawn to unique prints, but then the style and cut of the dress wouldn’t be right,” she says. “So I would take these elements and adapt [them] to create my own modern day version of the garment.

Posse’s new collection, L’Essentials, is a curation of the best-selling styles over the last few years. They’re building blocks for a well-rounded summer wardrobe, with designs imbued with a hint of nostalgia.

“A lot of the garments are one size fits all – they’re effortless pieces that you can pop on at any stage of the year,” she says. “They’re very trans-seasonal and about 90 per cent of our garments are linen.”

Top sellers include the hand-dyed linen Micky bandeau, a tight-fitting crop top with a tie front, available in black, white and rose. The crisp, breezy Lula shirt is an oversized, relaxed-fit button-down style made with a linen and cotton blend. It has an exaggerated longline back and comes in black and white.

Mulham studied styling and creative direction at Melbourne’s Whitehouse Institute of Design and says working in fashion retail gave her invaluable insight into what women were shopping for: “Easy to wear, effortless, timeless pieces that were feminine and sexy”.

She designed and released her first range in 2016. “I was the wrapper, packer, designer, customer service assistant,” she recalls. “I was hand-writing every single note to all of our customers.”

Today Mulham designs every garment in Sydney, and artisans in India and Bali construct the clothing. Like many young Australian fashion labels, Posse is dedicated to ethical manufacturing processes and seeks to be as sustainable as possible.

“We’re lucky because we work with 90 per cent natural fibres – natural linen and cotton – so they’re obviously going to eventually break down,” Mulham says. She also recently switched to recyclable packaging.

Alongside ready-to-wear offerings, Mulham has added a range of accessories including vintage-style scrunchies, sunglasses, chain-style costume jewellery and raffia pool slides.

While Posse is predominantly a resort wear label, Mulham says it will venture into designing smaller winter collection in the future, and in 2020 another capsule collection is due for release. “And we’ve got some exciting collaborations coming up,” she says.

AirRobe, the Airbnb of Clothing, Launches in Australia

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The idea for AirRobe came to Melbourne’s Hannon Comazzetto when she realised how many women are sitting on a wealth of accessories, bags and garments.

Her online marketplace, AirRobe, which launched in October, gives people the opportunity to make money from their clothing collections and at the same time help combat the rampant use-and-discard attitude around fashion.

“My whole mission with AirRobe is to create a platform that makes it really easy to buy into pre-loved fashion and to extend the lifespan of clothing and fashion,” says Comazzetto.

The site works a lot like Airbnb, but for clothes. Users sign up, browse clothing, handbags, shoes and accessories and then hit “buy” or “rent” on pieces they love. It’s a shared marketplace, which means individuals can list items they want to sell or lend, and existing second-hand luxury fashion retailers can use the platform to operate a digital shop. (AirRobe has a partner courier service that collects and ships directly between seller and buyer.)

Listing an item is free, but AirRobe charges a 17 per cent commission when the item is rented or sold. Users provide details of their items, such as size, colour, material and condition, and add in a retail value as well as rental or sale prices. If a piece is available to try on, they can list that too. “There is a treasure hunt element to its,” says Comazetto. “You can sometimes find a bargain.”

AirRobe also offers a valet service where the team takes care of the listing for you. “In that case, we charge a 30 per cent commission. And we handle everything, so we take all the photography, we list it and we market it on our site. And then once it sells, we send all the proceeds, minus our commission, to the vendor.”

Comazzetto curates the inventory by setting parameters around the quality and provenance of products listed. She prioritises brands that operate on a season-by-season basis rather than fast-fashion brands. The site features garments and accessories from labels including Gucci, Chloé, Celine, Bassike, Camilla and Marc, Zimmermann and Helmut Lang – everything from this Chanel tweed blazer to this blue leather bag by Trenery.

Comazzetto says that, since launching in October, the AirRobe user base has grown around 30 per cent week-on-week. There are currently around 18,000 users and approximately 2000 items on the site.

This is not Comazzetto’s first business. She was the founder of Borderless, a Melbourne-based startup that harnessed blockchain technology to deliver a currency transfer service at minimal cost. She was also a senior consultant at EY. She wants to use some of that knowledge to make the fashion industry more transparent and enhance the second-hand economy, which is projected to grow to nearly 1.5 times the size of fast fashion within the next 10 years.

Research shows the average person today buys 60 per cent more items of clothing than they did 15 years ago, but we are only keeping that clothing for half as long as we used to. If we extend the lifespan of a garment by just six months, it reduces its carbon impact by 20 per cent,” says Comazzetto. “Whether these pieces are rented or resold, we are redirecting them back into the system – it’s an important step in closing the loop.”

The Only Dresses You Need for Summer

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Dresses are a natural summer staple. From the crinolines of the 18th century through to the geometric shift dresses of the sixties, they promote ease-of-dressing and complete a look with just one garment. “For me, [the dress] epitomises effortless style,” says Oroton’s creative director Sophie Holt. “It’s easy to throw on a beautiful, simple dress in a lightweight cotton, style it with a great sandal and a statement piece of jewellery, and then you’re done.”

Holt says you can easily transform dresses from a casual day look into an elegant evening look with the addition of a belt or an alluring shoe. That’s why it’s important to seek out those pieces that’ll go the distance in terms of classic looks, sustainable fabrics and quality fabrication. Here Holt shares her favourite styles under $450 for every occasion this season.

The shirt dress
Best thrown on after a day at the beach, the beauty of this basic is it can be dressed up by cinching the waist or pairing with the right shoes and accessories. “I prefer a slightly masculine aesthetic, so I wear mine loose and anchor the look with some chunky Isabel Marant slides,” says Holt. Oroton’s recently launched ready-to-wear collection includes a number of shirt dresses, including the clay shirt dress ($399) with a soft tailored, oversized silhouette and elasticated belt to define the waist. The cotton striped short-sleeved dress ($299) is oversized and features drop-shoulder detailing, a banded collar and patch pockets. It’s finished with natural shell buttons running down the front and can be styled with rolled-up cuffs for a more casual look.

The party dress
No matter the dress code, Holt recommends wearing a dress you feel comfortable and confident in. “I typically go for something that has a stand-out feature, like a strong silhouette or a striking block colour,” she says. Oroton’s silk full-sleeve dress ($449) has voluminous sleeves that add softness and texture to the otherwise crisp silhouette. Cinch the waist with the optional sash or wear it without for an effortless, easy-fitting yet elegant look.

The versatile dress
Holt says if you’re heading straight from the office to the work Christmas party, you need pieces that will give you the most versatility. “The Sunray pleat dress ($449) looks cool with a striped shirt dress over the top or on its own with gold-layered jewellery,” she says. “Another great piece is our vintage floral print silk column dress, ($449) which can be worn loose or layered up with a relaxed linen blazer.” You can also style it belted at the waist and worn with a heel and Oroton’s Hazel mini-frame bag ($399).

The long-sleeve dress
For summer, a lightweight fabric is key for anything long-sleeved. “This Lemaire midi shirt dress [$471] does this style really well, both patterned and plain,” Holt says. “I also love full sleeves in a longer lined silhouette, like our long-sleeved striped cotton shirt dress ($399).”

The little black dress
“For a fresher feel, I prefer to wear colour and pattern in summer,” Holt says. “For a black-tie event, a simple black dress is always the best. Stella McCartney does an amazing classic gown ($4,200), which ticks the box for being both chic and versatile.”

The holiday dress
Holiday dressing should be lightweight, comfortable and easy to pack into your carry-on. “Most of my holiday wardrobe is made up of dresses: kaftans ($349) for daywear, and Isabel Marant does great silk-printed dresses ($1750) for warm summer evenings.”

First Look: The First Retail Store for Aussie Label Monte, the Slippers You Can Wear to the Pub

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As sleepwear continues to venture out of the bedroom and into the streets, the comfortable hotel slipper is coming along for the ride. In 2018, Melbourne couple Lib Hutton and Will Carter saw a gap in the market for unisex loafers that could be worn to the pub or to work, as well as around the house.

The idea for the label devoted to the slip-on came to Hutton while she was cleaning the house and noticed Carter had accumulated a collection of cheap hotel slippers. “He wears them until they’re old and hole-y,” she told Broadsheet in 2018. “I saw about six pairs and I was like, ‘Oh my god, we need to get you a pair that’ll last’.”

They turned to the classic Prince Albert loafer for design inspiration – a shoe originally worn in the 19th century by people entertaining at home – and Bertie was born.

“There wasn’t a lot out there that wasn’t a Gucci slipper – something really stylish but [also something you could] really bash around in,” Hutton says. “There wasn’t anything on the market that was … affordable and minimal.”

But after launching the label and trying to lodge an application for trademark, the pair realised another footwear company had claimed the Bertie name in Australia.

“We came to the conclusion that we were better off rebranding and going down a different route, which is where Monte was born,” Carter says.

And with that new name comes the couple’s first physical store – a Cremorne warehouse they share with local womenswear label Ryder.

“We wanted something really inviting, so people kind of step into this Monte world,” Hutton says. “And somewhere where it felt comfortable, quite homely.”

Fitted out by interior designer Sophie Davies, the new shop is flooded with light and integrates the two labels seamlessly. An armchair has been reupholstered to match Monte’s green velvet slipper, and the shoe console was handmade by Davies.

Monte makes just one style that’s a little bit hotel slipper, a little bit loafer, with a comfortable slip-on fit. Two new colourways – jet black and powder blue – have been added to the label’s current range, which includes hunter green, mulberry red and peacoat navy. The shoes are made with velvet uppers and 100 per cent leather soles, and retail for $145 a pair (or $165 with personalised embroidery).

There are plans to launch a new style and new colourways by the end of next year. But for now, the couple is just excited to see customers interact the slippers in a way they haven’t before.

“We eventually want to be like, ‘People think slipper, they think Monte’, [the same way] people think thongs, they think Havaianas,” Hutton says. “But I mean, that’s the dream.”

126 Cubitt Street, Cremorne

Mon to Fri 10am–5pm
Sat 10am–4pm

Australian Label St Cloud Makes Retro Knitwear for Every Season

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Sharon Taylor is an advocate for wearing knitwear in any climate, all year round. Whether it’s a long lunch in winter or balmy rooftop drinks in summer, a knit is your friend. That’s why she launched her own all-seasons knitwear label, St Cloud, in Melbourne last year.

“Our knit dresses are very versatile and are designed for day wear with sneakers, or dressed up with a heel,” Taylor says. “We then go into fine-knit tops for layering, as well as statement cardis and coats for comfort dressing.”

Inspiration for each St Cloud collection comes from yarn and colour trends identified by the label’s yarn mills in Florence, Italy. Other materials and fabrics are sourced from Asia, and St Cloud’s production is based in China.

The label’s signature viscose-nylon blend is used for its stretch-knit crepe pieces, while silk-cotton blends and merino are used for the fine knits. Soft alpaca and mohair blends come into play in the winter collections.

Before launching St Cloud, Taylor worked in Country Road’s knitwear department as a product development assistant. During her seven years at the company, from 1990 to 1997, she learned about the trade under the former head of product development for Ralph Lauren in New York, who’d been poached by Country Road founder Stephen Bennett. “The hours were brutal, but I loved every minute of it,” she recalls.

After Country Road, Taylor established her own sourcing and development business, Sourcing Studio, which helped Australia designers sample and manufacture their knitwear drawing on Taylor’s technical expertise and contacts in China and Italy. Sourcing Studio worked with a number of brands over the years, from emerging designers to national retailers such as Gorman, Witchery, Country Road, Portmans and Just Jeans.

In 2018, Taylor closed that business and launched St Cloud in her Cremorne, Melbourne design studio.

“I was approached by a European fashion distributor who saw a gap in the market for interesting knitwear [that focused on] colour and texture,” she says. “It didn’t take long for me to jump on board – after more than a decade of producing knitwear for other brands, I was excited to be able to put my own stamp on something.”

The label’s spring-summer 2019 collection has just dropped. Inspired by ’70s Palm Springs, it includes short-sleeve polos, knit polo dresses and other fresh takes on retro styles. The Rhodes Rib Knit Polo is made from a lightweight viscose nylon-blend, knitted in a wide rib and features a collared neckline with gold buttons. It’s available in a range of colours including khaki, pink, mandarin, tan, black and white. Style it with denim (or a skirt) and sneakers.

The sporty Rib Knit Polo Dress, with its bold accent stripes, is a contemporary take on a retro summer tennis dress. Dress it up with strappy, barely-there heels or down with sneakers or slides.

Prices range from $149 to $449.

Pomme, The Affordable Australian Label Making Timeless, Comfortable Loungewear for Brides and Bridesmaids

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Bridal loungewear label Pomme was born out of Melbourne co-founder Emily Ventura’s own search for “non-floral, non-shiny but affordable getting-ready shirts” for her wedding. “I couldn’t find anything that wasn’t really expensive. [It] adds up when you have a few bridesmaids and have already gone over budget on the florist,” she says. “Everything was too girly or ‘bridal’ for me … I didn’t want ‘bride’ [written] across the back in diamantes.”

At the time, she was doing the marketing and PR for womenswear label Interval, owned by Kara Lui (a former Alexander Wang intern), who’s also the co-founder of Pomme.

“Kara had a simple pinstripe cotton shirt dress in her collection, which suited my more minimalist style, so I chose that for my bridesmaids,” says Ventura. “The amount of questions we both received from posting pictures of my wedding on Instagram triggered the thought that maybe others out there were struggling to find something as I did.”

“Brides are putting more effort into making [the pre-wedding ritual] as picture-perfect as the rest of the celebrations,” she adds.

And so Pomme launched at the beginning of 2018.

With every design, Ventura and Lui aim to answer three questions: “What will make [someone] feel comfortable and confident on the day? What will [flatter the] whole bridal party and their various body shapes? What looks beautiful now that will also stand the test of time 10, 20 years later?” Lui says. Pomme’s understated garments are designed to last beyond the wedding day – the timeless shirting looks just as good with a pair of jeans; the classic robes are ideal for lounging at home.

Shirt dresses and shirt sets are 100 per cent cotton with a structured boyfriend-shirt look – but they’re soft to touch, too. The robes and camisole sets are made from linen-cotton blends and are less prone to wrinkling compared to 100 per cent linen. “Important for wedding day photos,” Lui says.

Collection 2 – the label’s latest shirting range, which launched in October – is inspired by summer light and air, and comes in warm and sandy hues, with a touch of muted green. Hero pieces include the polka-dot shirt dress, which comes in a relaxed boyfriend fit with an open collar. The option of having your initials embroidered on the chest or across the sleeve is also available.

The Solange robe is made from a premium linen-cotton blend in a washed grass green. It has a detachable wide waist tie, internal buttons and back-hanger loop. “I’m getting married next year and will be dressing myself and [my] bridesmaids in this style,” says Lui.

Prices range from $38 to $98. The second installment of Collection 2 will launch in the coming weeks, and will include a travel-friendly, wrinkle-resistant shirt dress and shirt set.

Bausele: A Distinctly Australian Watch Born in Sydney and Crafted in Switzerland

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Christophe Hoppe founded his Sydney-based watch label Bausele after more than a decade working for global watch companies TechnoMarine and Universo SA, both of which belong to the Swatch Group.

Hoppe, who was born in France, met his Australian wife (ballet dancer Alexandra Grace Carey) in Geneva, Switzerland. After the pair moved to Sydney in 2010, Hoppe – who had always designed watches in his spare time – decided in 2011 to start his own watch brand, after he noticed a gap in the Australian market for locally designed, Swiss-made luxury watches.

“There were two things he wanted,” Bausele CEO Arron Coote told Broadsheet (Hoppe was travelling at the time of publication). “One: the watch must have Swiss precision, and two: they needed to be uniquely Australian.”

“To make them uniquely Australian, Christophe decided to fill the hollow crown of each watch with red earth from the outback or sand from one of our beautiful beaches,” Coote explains. (The crown is the small dial that allows you to change the time.) The name Bausele is a portmanteau of sorts of the words “beyond Australian elements”.

The watches are assembled in the Swiss watchmaking region of La Chaux-de-Fonds, and Swiss company Soprod makes movements for two Bausele styles. (Switzerland is considered to be the home of horology and the world’s best watchmakers).

Bausele watches employ a quartz movement, meaning the second hand has the individual “tick-tick” motion that moves once per second, unlike mechanical watches (the kind often associated with luxury watchmakers) that have a smooth, sweeping motion. Quartz movements are very accurate and require minimal maintenance aside from battery replacements.

“We want to encourage our customers to work hard and play hard,” Coote says. “Our tagline is ‘beach to boardroom’ … each timepiece comes with two quick-release straps so you can change the look of the watch in seconds. You can wear the stainless steel or leather strap to work, then switch the strap out for the rubber one and you can be on your surfboard in the ocean.”

Each Bausele watchcase is made from surgical grade 316 stainless steel; the plastic straps are made from recycled PET soft-drink bottles; leather straps come in black or brown; and orange rubber straps are also available.

The smart but sporty Oceanmoon III ($990) can be worn as a day watch or to dressy events. It’s waterproof up to 200 metres, tells the wearer when the tide is high or low, and has a nano-ceramic glass face, which Bausele says is 30 per cent more shatter-proof than standard sapphire glass. Its crown is filled with genuine beach sand.

The crown in the limited-edition Sydney Opera House ($595) timepiece – available to buy online and at the Opera House store – contains crushed tile from the Sydney architectural icon, and the face takes inspiration from Opera House architect Jørn Utzon’s original sketches.

And Bausele’s smartwatch doesn’t look like a smartwatch at all. The Vintage 2.0 has a vintage-look analogue face (with a tiny kangaroo on the dial), but it’s actually connected to an app on your phone. The watch can count your steps, monitor your sleep, and alert you to missed calls and texts. It’s designed to give wearers a break from screen time whilst keeping them connected.

“We want our customers to take time for life and make real, engaged connections with friends and family, away from phones,” Coote says. The Vintage 2.0 is priced at $750, but it’s currently on pre-order for $525, to be released in early 2020.

Bausele already has fans in Europe and the US, and will soon launch in China with three experiential stores, replete with outback-inspired red earth on the floor and Australian wood furnishings.

How to Look Good for Less: Budget-Friendly Workwear

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Figuring out what to wear to work every day can be tiresome, expensive and uninspiring.

Perth-based Gabrielle Leavesley and Melbourne’s Nessie Croft, of non-typical workwear label Coreprêt, are challenging your Monday-to-Friday fashion sense with a range of sustainable quality contemporary pieces you can wear again and again.

Croft believes that because our workplaces are where most of us spend the majority of our week we should be able to wear clothes that suit our needs and give us confidence. “We strongly believe in taking the time to invest in quality, timeless fashion pieces that don’t compromise your personal aesthetic or values,” she says.

The duo sits down with Broadsheet to decode dressing for work affordably and elegantly, and to share tips on where to shop for imaginative quality office wear.

Be considered in your approach
Croft and Leavesley both agree that asking questions is important for putting together a wardrobe that caters to all seasons. “Where is it made? What is the fibre content? Is it natural or synthetic? How often will I wear it? Does it actually fit my body shape? Am I willing to commit to this piece long-term?” says Croft. “You want your workwear to tick a number of boxes; you need to decide what those are and then apply them to your shopping habits.”

Invest in quality, timeless pieces
“Quality, for us, means a great fit, impeccable construction, considered fabric choice and garments that transcend the seasons and generations,” Croft says, stressing it’s vital to take the time to invest in some versatile, high-quality pieces in order to save on your price-per-wear in the long-term. The pair suggests local designers Limb the LabelLois Hazel and Kowtow.

You can’t go wrong with a two-piece suit
Croft and Leavesley believe a sharp two-piece suit, which can be worn together or as separate pieces, can be a staple for the office throughout the week. Think of it as three different looks for the price of one. The designers recommend UK fashion retailer Reiss, which offers an extensive range of smart suiting.

Don’t be afraid to outfit repeat
Don’t be scared to throw on the same outfit two days in a row, the duo says. “If you’re investing in quality basics, no one will notice but you,” says Croft. And she says if you’re looking to spice up a look, just add some jewellery, statement footwear or a bag. “Use your accessories to harness parts of your personal style, particularly if your work uniform is fairly understated,” she says. “We’re currently in love with CDG x Dr Martens in ivory – they’re stylish and give your outfit that little bit of edge.”

Croft also emphasises being playful with your accessories. She recommends drawing upon typical masculine archetypes – like a necktie, a bold belt, cute socks – or jazzing up your lanyard. “Little details that help your personality shine through,” she says. The duo also recommends Ada Hodgson for your office-appropriate jewellery needs, Actually Existing for beautifully made accessories and Issey Miyake Pleats Please for a stylish splash of colour.

Share clothes with friends and family
“We regularly swap clothing with our friends to create a shared wardrobe,” says Croft, excited by the prospect that wardrobes can double, or even triple in size. “If you’re lucky enough to live with friends (with good taste), then organising a shared wardrobe is easy. If not, it just takes a little more planning but it’s well worth it.”

Learn to mend your own clothes
“If you’re really tired of your wardrobe, look for local workshops that show you how to re-invent key pieces through dyeing, mending or other craft practices,” Croft says. She believes it can completely change the look of an old, over-worn garment, giving it new life – particularly if something becomes ill-fitting. The duo recommends workshops held by designers in conjunction with larger events such as Melbourne Fashion Week, Fashion Revolution Week or Slow Fashion Festival. Alternatively, your grandma might have a skill or two she could teach you. And Patagonia has also developed online guides on how to mend.

Where to shop
Croft and Leavesley recommend shopping at local op shops, vintage stores and designer consignment stores to find stylish and affordable office wear. Some of their favourite second-hand shops include designer consignment store BruceRecycle Boutique (where you can also make money), Swop and local op shops in Collingwood and Abbotsford in Melbourne. “There’s a particularly good one on Gipps Street,” Croft says. They also recommend online platforms such as EverlaneThe Real Real and Well Made Clothes.

“If you’re more inclined to partake in wardrobe sharing, then we recommend The Clothing Exchange, which offers a platform for people to come together both online and in person to swap their clothes,” says Leavesley. “And finally, if you prefer an ever-changing wardrobe, we encourage you to sign up to Glam Corner, a clothing rental service that also offers subscriptions for workwear capsules.”