If you happened to catch a glimpse of Oroton’s Australian Fashion Week show in June, you might recall it was a moment of rebirth for the label. It was not, as one might have expected, a showcase simply dedicated to streamlined leatherwear (although this was in fine form, too) rather it was a fashion exaltation – when the 80-year-old Australian brand broke free of its longterm accessories pigeonhole and free-fell into the wide open fields of seasonal fashion.
At the hands of creative director extraordinaire Sophie Holt, this was to be Oroton’s first foray into a full apparel collection. Having taken the reigns in 2018, she has almost instantly proved why her reputation as a makeover master proceeds her. Firstly, the collection’s attention on happier, floatier, ethereal days ahead was a welcome theme. Aptly entitled The Optimist, it offered a vision of summer we’ve longed for. Secondly, every single piece ignited a sensory awakening. A collection so bursting with life and ingenuity it instantly took us to a better place.
The collection’s whimsy for nostalgia was delivered through inspired prints and cuts circa mid-century Australian vacationing. It felt warming to have such thoughtful detail evoked from our own (literal) backyards, with looks derived from the esoteric and idiosyncratic details these bygone eras were flush with (the tapestry appliqué, the crocheted textures, the micro florals). And it was these accents that provided the collection with its visceral success. The romantic thought of the Doily dress on warm evening walk, the Garden Shirt at beach bar on a coastal retreat or the Madison tote slung over your shoulder while roaming the streets of a faraway town.
Although the collection offered a huge number of complete looks, each singular piece (from jewellery to handbags to skirts to blouses) proved worthy of its wearable-desirable nature. And while The Optimist offered a vision of our coming season – our road trips, our social encounters, our travels abroad – its wanderlust carved a solid mark into our everyday wardrobes as well. Finally, after a long, locked down winter, Oroton’s Optimist has arrived in store.
Here we detail ten pieces that would be as suitable on your proposed Cotê d’Azur sojourn as they would be on your (perhaps more likely) mid-summer tour of the Australian coast. And while they’ll prove endlessly useful during the holiday season, they’ll be equally chic for the elusive…return to the office.
The Garden Floral Shirt
The short-sleeved printed shirt will be this season’s master of summertime chic. Oroton’s linen Sugarcane variant conjures a 60’s surfer vintage while brandishing an equally modern silhouette. When paired with matching culottes or worn open over a one-piece swimsuit it offers a unique effortlessness – just add some tan leather sandals to complete the look. SHOP NOW
The Madison Large Tote
Not to be limited by sandy destinations, the Madison tote is readied for roads beyond the coast. With a removable canvas pouch and a chic contrasting leather trim and buckle, this oversized woven straw market basket makes size and style its virtue. Additionally, its brass details, embossed logo and leather pocket upgrades its casual genre to one of elegant versatility. SHOP NOW
The Alva Collectable Small Day Bag
Part of what makes Oroton’s Optimist collection so ingeniously modern is its harmonious blending of trend and utility. The Alva is desirably cute, a bag so of the moment with its micro structure that also retains a hardy, useful comfort. Between its leather and straw materials, the internal zip pocket and its sophisticated brass hardware, it’s the new-wave shoulder clutch we need right now. SHOP NOW
The Check Shirt Dress in Corn Silk
Most of us are in the mood for curating a hardworking, long-lasting wardrobe. A collection of pieces we can wear in multiple ways. This long-line, loose-cut shirt dress (with its inspired wide sleeves and tonal check print) is as stylishly conscientious as they come. Cut from the softest corn silk, this cover-all suits after-beach sandals and wet hair as much as it does a cinched belt and casual heels. SHOP NOW
The Mini Doily Dress in Antique White
You’d be hard pressed to find a more covetable sartorial vignette than a woman dressed in a fresh white dress, haloed by a coastal background. The crocheted doily detail of this babydoll frock, as well as its crisp starchy collar and beautifully ballooned sleeves make this midi-dress an outstanding yet understated seasonal favourite. SHOP NOW
The Nilson Phone Crossbody
Crafted from a smooth tan leather and with a protective faux leather lining, this crossbody phone-pocket bag is fashion for technology. Yet, while it offers meticulous practicality via dual external card slots and a home for your most droppable commodity, its chic design means it is as much a piece of stylish accoutrement as it is a handsfree saviour. SHOP NOW
The Ocean Limpet Necklace in Worn Gold
Refining a summer look with a neckline of golden shells will be a high trend this coming season. Crafted from precious metals in delicate limpet charms, Oroton’s oceanic necklace will add sophisticated detail to any monochromatic outfit or simple beach ensemble. Layer with long chains and thin pearls to reach the look even further. SHOP NOW
The Bamboo Chunky Bangle
The return of the statement bangle means wrist wear is making a play for accessory leader this summer. The gold-plated brass bamboo bracelet from Oroton is both texturally enticing and inspired by design. Crafted to resemble the organic lines of bamboo stalks, this is a statement bracelet that can single handedly (pardon the pun) create a cohesive look. SHOP NOW
The Marilla Clip-On Earrings in Worn Gold
Cast in the form of delicately layered leaves, the Marilla earrings capture fashion’s ongoing love for botanical silhouettes. As simple yet defining decor for any outfit, the fact they’re engineered as clip-ons make them all the more attractive. SHOP NOW
The Loop Detail Dress
Balanced between the femme and the sculptural, the Loop dress is a hero piece from The Optimist collection. Cut from pure cotton with a fine scalloping along the upper edges, its shape offers a modern, free-flowing hourglass incarnation. Its pin-tucked waistline and subtly voluminous sleeves make this a flawlessly flattering (and exceptionally wearable) new season dress. SHOP NOW