SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - MAY 12: Models walk the runway during the Jordan Dalah show during Afterpay Aust...
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7 Designers To Know From Afterpay Australian Fashion Week 2022

Meet Jordan Dalah, Alix Higgins, and more.

Resortwear was in full swing at Afterpay Australian Fashion Week 2022 in Sydney and there were new, exciting designer names to match.

Recently, Australia has been a budding space for compelling fashion matched by inspiring talent, such as Dion Lee and Christopher Esber. The country is quickly becoming recognized beyond its commercial fashion, most especially for impeccable tailoring, elevated beachwear, and contemporary staples, and this Resort 2023 season didn’t disappoint. Many Australian designers are taking a proactive lens on sustainability and ethical processes, too, as evidenced through their use of local materials and production.

Multiple designers made their debut at AAFW 2022 and we have all the brands you need to watch for this upcoming year and beyond.

Alix Higgins

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Designer Alix Higgins premiered his first solo runway show at this season’s Afterpay Australian Fashion Week, featuring the colorful pieces he’s known for and powerfully-adorned statement looks. With a growing following in Australia, Higgins’ show was one of the most buzzed-about this season and it did not disappoint.

“The focus was definitely expanding the vision of the brand and presenting something that I felt was really fresh and challenging for me, as well. I always try to challenge myself each collection rather than just doing what I love. I hate polka dot and I was like, I have to do polka dot; hate lime green, so I had to do lime green,” Higgins says of this collection. That vision was translated to the runway via a combination of body-hugging pieces embellished with affirmative statements, such as “future” and “god,” as well as exciting, bright prints in easy silhouettes.

ESSE Studios

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Set beautifully in the Sydney Opera House on a rainy day, designer Charlotte Hicks made herself one to watch with a debut collection of elevated tailored pieces. Her aesthetic is a mixture of modern minimalism and capsule-wardrobe classics. The seasonless brand’s collections are designed to build upon each other, creating a slow, sustainable wardrobe of well-curated staples. The tones of the collection were as easy and peaceful as the rain-stained glass of the venue, including rich camel, timeless black, and soft ivory. Keep this brand top of mind for beautiful knitwear, precise tailoring, and effortless silhouettes.

Bondi Born

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A true resortwear collection, Bondi Born sent a colorful, swim-infused collection of easy dressing down an electric violet runway. Creative Director Karla Clarke highlighted bold, bright swimwear styled effortlessly with tonal looks in pistachio, lavender, and powder blue. The outfits were also finished with jelly and flatform sandals from Charles & Keith in coordinating colors.

As evidenced throughout the collection, the brand began with swimwear and is produced locally with a focus on sustainability and fit. Turn to Bondi Born for swim that can translate to stylish ready-to-wear and vacationwear that you’ll wear beyond your beach-bound trip.

Jordan Dalah

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A true innovator in the Australian fashion landscape, Jordan Dalah presented his Resort 2023 collection in a crisp, bright room complete with a bold, blue carpet surrounded by lawn chairs. After graduating from Central Saint Martens in 2018, Dalah returned to Australia to focus on establishing his eponymous fashion label.

“I wanted to show people that my world has kind of this ethereal, otherworldliness to it but I wanted to just creep everyday objects into that world and in different ways,” says Dalah. “The chairs played into it because a lot of the structure in those chairs I wanted to bring into the garments. I’m known for putting hemming and wadding and stuffing, lifting and pushing and pulling silhouettes, but I always do it with stuff available to me from fashion haberdashery stores, whether it’s boning or conventional stuff.”

The unique voluminous and visionary silhouettes that walked Dalah’s runway were creations made possible by unexpected materials, such as irrigation wire and foam tubing. The collection was a juxtaposition between vintage garments and futuristic silhouettes, as well as surrealism mixed with the everyday experience.

Beare Park

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Following the brand’s launch at Afterpay Australian Fashion Week 2021, Beare Park’s sophomore show was full of glamour from day through night. Floor-length trench coats, draped dresses, and impeccable tailoring characterized the latest collection, accessorized with sheer black stockings and hats by Helen Kamanski.

Co-founder and creative director Gabriella Pereira referenced “the art of getting dressed” in her show notes, lending itself to the practicality of the brand for the everyday woman, as well as her desire to get dressed again beyond the home. Designed and produced in Australia, Beare Park has a commitment to sustainable materials and ethical processes. The quickly-growing brand is one to keep an eye on for effortless neutral dressing and sophisticated evening wear.

Phoebe Pendergast

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Designer Phoebe Pendergast presented a contemporary sporty, yet sultry, collection in AAFW’s NextGen show, which highlighted upcoming talent in a series of capsule collections. Pendergast began creating in 2019 and is now completing her masters at Central Saint Martens as she continues to grow her skillset and brand, aiming for the global stage.

Of her journey to this collection, Pendergast says, “I started off looking at heartbreak in particular, because that’s what I was going through at the time, you know that naivety of heartbreak. Now it’s kind of moving into something more about empowering women and finding your own sense of sexuality, finding this balance between masculine and feminine at the same time.” The eight-look collection was brimming with unexpected cutouts, vibrant hues, modern sportswear, and maze-like patchwork.


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A mixture of embellished sheer pieces, shimmering fabrics, and artful cutouts characterized Auteur’s Resort 2023 collection, complete with heavenly shell jewelry and genius styling. Designer Lucinda Taffs has been in the industry for more than 15 years but is just now embarking on her own brand. Inspired by nature, specifically the ocean, Taffs’ latest collection showcases the use of fluid and luminous fabrics. The brand is one to watch for modern, pragmatic dressing that feels both daring and sensible in a particularly exciting way.

Disclosure: IMG provided travel and accommodations to attend and cover Afterpay Australian Fashion Week 2022.

See the best street style moments from Afterpay Australian Fashion Week 2022.