Melbourne is the city of plenty, with incredible coffee shops on every second corner, local labels and hidden gems in warehouses and basements, and it’s home to some of the most revered restaurants in the country. There’s never a shortage of things to do, see, eat or experience. But if you’re anything like me, you take your shopping seriously, so in a city like Melbourne with thousands of stores, you need to have a plan in place if you’re searching for something special.
109 Auburn Road, Hawthorn
Swoon is everything that the name suggests and I bet the value of the outfit you walk out with, that you walk out with an outfit every time. The Swoon vibe is a girly one; florals, pastels, volume, lace and all things feminine, with artisan accessories and home wares to match. Swoon’s collection of Australian labels (including APOM, Angie Lu, Keegan and Asilio) reflect their philosophy, “To be emotionally affected by something that one admires.” It’s within walking distance from the Auburn train station and a stones throw from some of the best coffee shops and paleo café’s in the area, so take the afternoon off on Auburn Road and keep an eye out for Swoon’s stunningly styled window displays.
Monk House Design
102 Lygon Street, Brunswick East
Monk House Design is a small boutique in Brunswick with a big mission, and the store’s range of independent labels are carefully curated and sourced from around the world, as well as locally. It’s a little more exclusively priced when it comes to the shopping scale, but the high quality craftsmanship and attention to detail are worth it. You’ll find some of my Australian favourites there too: Kloke, Thursday Sunday, Dress Up, Verner, Pageant and Kuwaii, among many more, and if you’re into the minimal fashion aesthetic, you won’t be disappointed with Monk House Design.
Shop 20, Centreway Arcade, 259 Collins St, Melbourne
It’s always an interesting conversation starter – another of my favourite past times is visiting Shag. It’s not an Australian-made store, but it is vintage, and in my eyes (and clearly by my current wardrobe), indulging in vintage fashion is every bit as important as supporting Australian labels, as it lengthens the fashion life cycle just that little bit longer. If I can rescue a vintage Chanel, a bright paisley printed maxi dress, or a pair of velvet high-waisted bell-bottoms in the name of sustainable fashion, I sure as hell will. My every vintage desire lies within the walls of Shag, and despite its relatively small city shop space, it is filled with some incredible vintage finds. My favourite store of their three is the city location, but you can find another two in Windsor and Fitzroy.
The Dress Collective
Regardless if you’re travelling from overseas, visiting from interstate or even a resident of Melbourne, you can shop from The Dress Collective at any time, from anywhere – it’s online! With the unpredictable weather, we seem to be graced with so often in Melbourne, it’s always best to have a backup-shopping plan that involves an online destination. The Dress Collective stocks emerging labels that are 100% Australian and all of The Dress Collective labels are ethically and sustainably designed and produced locally, offering small-run collections and exclusive made-to-order outfits.
The Fashion Advocate x