For THE UPSIDE AW17, we travelled to faraway lands and became immersed in a city different from our own. Paris, like much of Europe, presents a stark contrast to our home turf of Sydney. Beauty was in the differences and inspiration came from the unknown; like the language, and the cobblestone streets we became lost in. What we discovered at the end of the road was a revolution in the way we view the world.
This season, universes collide: jocks and nerds; style and comfort; street and sweat. Like Margot Tenenbaum, we make the rules, and we know when to break them. Embracing our own interpretation of individuality and saying no to compromise. Soft, strong, sporty, smart. Who says we can’t have it all?
Our latest collection looks to those peculiar idols who may not fit the typical mould; like the young tech CEO who practices yoga, the supermodel with a degree in psychology, or the pro footballer with a passion for coding. From them, we learn to champion originality, chase what we love, and enjoy the hustle. Our brains are to be celebrated as much as our bodies; combine their power, and we make magic.
More than ever, we’re seeing the offbeat and the mainstream unite. From Steve Jobs’ industry takeover and Karlie Kloss’ YouTube success to Alexis Ohanian’s engagement to one of the world’s greatest athletes, a new breed of ‘nerdy’ entrepreneurs are bringing counterculture to the forefront. Once outsiders, they’re now centre stage – creating, collaborating and blurring old ideas of status as they go. Nerd or geek, jock or cheerleader – we can find our tribe, or invent our own.
Unlike the airtight cliques of school hallways past, there’s no need to choose between quirky or popular. Between wits or weights. Beauty is being redefined and physical ability is no longer the epitome of accomplishment. Perfection is out. And gone are the days of pigeonholing those who don’t quite fit. Instead, we pair soft palettes and feminine florals with raw hems and bold prints – and stride clear of stereotypes. We can be whomever we want.
Taking cues from the misfits, the wallflowers and the rebels, we rush out like a wave over the world, on a mission to break down even more walls. We zip bombers over vintage cut shorts, lace up our favourite dusty sneakers and find our own rhythm. Don’t ever look back. Stretch, dance, jump and play – life is about more than long runs and heavy lifting. We find our niche, conquer it, and then change it. It’s all about balance.
There’s something energising about defying limitations. Leaving doubts in the schoolyard and graduating from old concepts of what health, fitness or style should look like – there’s no right or wrong. This is real life; and it’s powered by our uniqueness. All we have to do is embrace it. So let’s make those wide-framed specs rose-tinted, and haul our book bags to the gym.
Labels are out; it’s cool to be you.
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