From the Central Coast to the world, some of today’s leading fashion influencers are born-and-bred right here on the Coast.
With masses of online followers and front row seats at fashion weeks, the likes of @garypeppergirl, @tuulavintage and @elle_ferguson, to name just a few, might wear the latest in-vogue threads but they’re humble Coastie girls at heart.
There is also an increasing number of local designers and fashionistas creating and curating fabulous fashion for sale on the Coast and around the globe.
And so Central Coast Fashion Week (CCFW) was born. To bring all the raw talent from the region into the spotlight, and celebrate the modern wave of Coastie style.
The first CCFW was held at Avoca restaurant Bombini from March 22-27, 2017, and coordinated by three chic local ladies who are making waves on the Coast in their respective fields – Bombini owner Hayley Hardcastle, fashion designer Weave Dibden Neck and the woman behind Bohemian Traders, Emily Berlach.
Like similar events around the world, CCFW brought together many of the region’s most stylish exports for a week of fashion, arts, ideas and creativity.
Perhaps unlike some other fashion soirees, the CCFW events were laid-back with lots of love and laughter – and plenty of carbs. There were still endless glasses of champagne and oodles of beautiful people but in typical Coastie style, it was beauty and fashion without pretention.
As Terrigal girl turned global fashion maven Elle Ferguson put it: “There’s something in the water up here – people are supportive (even in fashion). And because of the commute, you have to really want it.”
Combining the best of Coastie fashion, art and food, attendees at the official launch were treated to an exclusive preview of By Weave’s new casual daywear collection Ukiyo, high fashion photography by some of the Coast’s top photographers and beautiful Bombini fare from mushroom tortellini to Nutella pizza.
In addition to local fashion, CCFW showcased simple styling from Renee Marshall, owner of Terrigal’s Allure Hair Bar, and professional make-up artist Tira Jaye.
Bombini’s bar also transformed into a yoga studio with Avoca yogi Carrera Jones showcasing Weave’s Ukiyo yoga-wear, including a sleek and stretchy black onesie.
During her denim download, Elle shared some handy hacks and fashion week fads, including drop crotch jeans (she said you must try it before you diss it) and underwear on the outside, like a corset worn over a t-shirt with jeans.
Wearing “mum jeans”, she said denim on denim is still hot and urged all in attendance to invest in a good pair of jeans (with plenty available at Boho Traders Erina store) and a good white tee (also found at Boho Traders, or Hanes).
From shirts to skirts and mid-rise to high-waisted skinny jeans, Elle said ‘universal and versatile’ denim had always been a fashion staple but was all over the world’s catwalks at the moment.
“Denim is like your best friend, you can’t live without it. It makes life easier – you have one pair of jeans and lots of tops.”
If your jeans need a clean, she suggested sticking them in a snap lock bag in the freezer instead of washing them, and for anyone about to go jeans shopping, Elle advised to buy a size too small, because it always stretches, and take an honest friend.
During the week, Bombini’s The Pantry was converted into a pop up store – The Closet – bringing a stylish selection of chic Coastie brands into one sassy space, complete with a champagne bar.
There were elegant Ukiyo garments By Weave, sexy black cozzies from Skin and Bone (sure to make any girl feel like a Bond girl), Boho Traders wardrobe staples including jeans, striped dresses and blazers; pretty swimwear from local designer Kira Pizzingrilli, and plenty of statement pieces from Ragamuffin Jewellery.
Perhaps it’s the freedom of the laid-back lifestyle, the hunger derived from travelling longer distances to work, or perhaps it’s just like Elle said – something in the water.
Whatever it is that’s created this latest breed of chic Coasties, one thing is for sure – Central Coast style is so hot right now, and probably will be for quite some time if CCFW is anything to go by.