Tonkin in her standard Matteau bikini and distressed denim  Credit: Instagram @pheobejtonkin

There are plenty of things the City of Angels and the east coast of Oz share in common – an ocean border, relatively idyllic weather, matcha lattes and fit bodies being just a few – but one thing that’s very different is their off-duty clothes of choice.

Good style and seasonal trends may be universal, but you can definitely spot the Aussies in Hollywood by the way they dress. Or so suggests Los Angeles-based actor Phoebe Tonkin, who recently spent several weeks home on Sydney’s northern beaches – the longest stint he’s had back in her home country in almost a decade.

The Vampire Diaries star, who admits to describes her signature fashion style as an intersection between designer and high street, is well placed to explain the difference in how stylish women dress on either side of the pond. So whether you’re looking for some packing inspiration for a US west coast holiday or just want to add a little Hollywood glam (with a sports luxe twist, no less), here’s her take on the sartorial divide.

Low key cool, US style: Tonkin with partner and The Vampire Diaries co-star Paul Wesley Credit: Getty Images

Occasion: off-duty days

Australia “When I’m here I live in Bassike oversized T-shirt dresses. [It feels like] everyone in Sydney wears [them] with thongs. I think anywhere else like LA that would look like a nightie, but everyone in Sydney wears them … I always go into Scanlan Theodore when I’m back [in Australia]. I wear Matteau swimmers every day when I’m home in Australia under everything. That’s kind of my go-to while I’m here.”

Los Angeles “In LA everyone lives in their workout clothes. I’m all for a good pair of sweatpants but walking around in tight leggings all day is not my favourite thing to do. I really do love in Bassike sweatpants and T-shirts [though].”

Raising the bar with Chanel and a statement clutch
Credit: Getty Images

Occasion: Dinner with friends

Australia “In Australia, I feel like everyone wears a lot of denim and linen shirts or T-shirts. I went out to a nice dinner the other night and almost everyone was wearing Levi’s and a nice white tee and ballet flats, which is really beautiful and simple and chic. I wouldn’t say it’s masculine but I definitely feel it’s kind of feel comfortable and easy. I think that’s very Australian.”

Los Angeles “In LA [though], that would be a little under-dressed. Everyone always gets more dressed up for things, everyone’s always wearing heels and their hair’s done, whereas [in Australia] things are a little bit more effortless … If I’m going out for dinner in LA, I definitely dress up a tiny bit, but that normally that just means I’ll wear a little bit of extra jewellery. I don’t wear heels. I’m not a big heel wearer.”

“My default style? A good pair of jeans, nice shirt, ballet flats and a little Chanel bag. I’m a bit of an Isabel Marant hoarder. That’s my go-to, but I also wear a lot of Zara. I go between [them] and Chanel.” – Phoebe Tonkin

Chanel blazer and flats teamed with a Zara tee is Tonkin’s default style when she’s in LA Credit: Instagram @phoebetonkin