Australian Fashion Trends, With A Tech Twist

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Nov 25, 2021

Marie-Atoinette Issa shares the latest Australian fashion trends. Think smart mirrors, Bluetooth swing tags and all things tech-related, with a sustainable spin. 

Melbourne Fashion Week Photographer Naomi Rahim

When it comes to post-Covid Australian fashion trends, shoppers have officially gone back to the future at Edit Collection – a retail concept and collaboration between Afterpay, The Australian Fashion Council and Vicinity Centres. 

The partnership, which launched on November 12 at Sydney’s Chatswood Chase shopping centre, is a showcase of style, sustainability and some seriously cool tech trends.

In what can only be described as an Australian Fashion Trend A team, the collab is co-hosted by Louisa Galligani / Director, Communications and Public Relations, ANZ and Europe at Afterpay; Kirsty Ghahramani / Director of Instore, Afterpay; Kellie Hush/ Acting CEO of the AFC; Corrine Barchanowicz / Head of Marketing at Vicinity Centres; and Simon Molnar/ Cofounder and CEO of tech start-up eTale.

Kellie Hush - Acting CEO, Australian Fashion Council
Kellie Hush – Acting CEO, Australian Fashion Council

Here, the A Team predicts five major trends that are emerging in Australian Fashion.

Australian Fashion Trends: Let’s get physi-digital  

When it comes to emerging fashion trends, experiences that utilise technology are having a major moment, with “physi-digital retail” a red hot look. A fusion of physical and digital customer ventures, according to Afterpay’s recent Lockdown Liberation study, this movement perfectly caters to the 66 percent of young Australians who may love online shopping yet missed being able to physically look and feel the products they are buying owing to COVID restrictions.

afterpay fashion

(Smart) Mirror, mirror on the wall 

Augmented reality has also been introduced to the retail experience. And the good news is you don’t need to pair your Bottega mules with an awkward oversized headset to try this trend. You simply need to step into an Edit Collection change room.

Featuring Smart Shoppable Mirrors – a Molnar creation made with technology that recognises when products are brought into the changing room – these looking glasses help customers see detailed information about their potential purchase, including sizes and fabric. As a result, they’re a helpful hack for anyone putting an outfit together – personal stylist not required. 

Simon Molnar - Co-founder, eTale
Simon Molnar – Co-founder, eTale

Snap your own stylish selfie? “Ugh, as if!”

Other interactive experiences at Edit Collection include gesture-controlled screens equipped with cameras that allow customers to shoot and share selfies.

When the customer stands in front of the mirror, a message will show prompting them to raise their left hand to take a selfie. Once the selfie has been taken, they’ll be able to scan a QR code to download and share their selfie. Soon-to-be available functionality will allow the customer to add filters to their selfies,” says Molnar. 

Anyone who ever scanned Cher’s virtual wardrobe in Clueless is sure to be impressed. 

Reese Witherspoon
Reese Witherspoon

Getting into the swing of things 

eCommerce retailers have long been able to take advantage of insights into online shopping behaviours. Now, the opportunity has now been extended to brick-and-mortar retailers through eTale chips. Another Molnar innovation, these Bluetooth-chipped garment swing tags deliver real-time data to retailers on most tried on, engaged and sold pieces by tracking them in store. As a result, merchants can keep tabs on their bestsellers, and when they need to stock up on more sizes or colours.

Olivia Calabio and Bondi Born founder Dale McCarthy
Olivia Calabio and Bondi Born founder Dale McCarthy

Sustainability is still in style

It may not technically be a technological trend, but sustainability continues to drive fashion into the future. This is proudly on display at Edit Collection – through both the fully recyclable hangers crafted from upcycled marine plastics, ocean-bound plastics and the contemporary Australian fashion brands which hang off them.

According to Kellie Hush, Edit Collection launch brand Bondi Born, as well as the three other emerging designers to be stocked in store over the next eight months – were specifically chosen due to their focus on creation with a conscience. “As well as sustainability, a number of other considerations were taken into account when deciding which brands were to be stocked in store. These included uniqueness of designs, diversity and inclusivity,” she says. 

In comparison to some of the more questionable fashion trends Australians have tried-and-tested over the years (shall we take a moment and pray that lace-up denim and frilled, multi-tiered tartan mini skirts, never make a comeback?), we’re pretty sure these are five looks any fashionista would happily get behind.


Pic credits above; Naomi Rahim


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