Pledge your brand allegiance loud and proud with the new crop of designer logo t-shirts and sweaters. Whether you opt for a simple, understated tees to work back with jeans or a bold sweater emblazoned with brand insignia the only thing you have to worry about with this trend is deciding which luxe label’s team you’re on.
When it comes to designing less is more for Australian designer Anna Hoang. A 2011 graduate of the Sydney Institute of Technology, her label Anna Quan is a perfect example of statement-making minimalism. Hoang has dressed international celebrities such as Kendall Jenner and Karlie Kloss and her range is stocked in Australia and internationally in Paris and Puerto Rico.
The label focuses on women’s ready-to-wear items and is about clean lines, functionality and attention to finishing details such as a strategically placed pocket or a perfectly finished lining. Each piece specialises in strong tailored silhouettes in luxe fabrications. Here I chat to Anna about her favourite trick for dressing well, where she gets her inspiration and how she gets ahead in the competitive world of fashion…
What influences your designs?
Streetwear. I love the way people style their clothes and how they wear common items everyday.
What is your favourite piece from your collection?
Fringed pants from Resort ’16. It adds a little bit of fun and playfulness into everyday dressing.
What is your most loved fashion item that you own?
Currently obsessing over Alighieri earrings from my friend who is a London-based designer. She makes these rough but elegant lost wax cast earrings in gold. They are just one-of-a-kind.
Who do you look up to ?
People who follow through and do what they say they will do.
When you need to escape where do you like to go?
Bed. Sleep is few and far between a lot of the time. I would love nothing more than a nap.
What do you think is the most important trick is to dressing well?
Definitely tailoring. Making sure your clothes are custom fit and taken in or up to your level. Never underestimate a great fit.
What has been your proudest moment so far in the fashion world?
Seeing my clothes snapped for best of street style for Paris, Milan, New York, Copenhagen fashion weeks for Vogue.com.
What is it like to compete in such a competitive industry as an emerging designer?
Like a marathon – it’s a long game – endurance and resilience is key. Sometimes it’s important to be reminded that you can get further with consistency rather than great big spurts and lags.
Which style icons do you look up to?
Pernille Teisbaek – she’s always putting together unlikely combinations that just work. She’s never boring
Anna in a snapshot:
Favourite colour: Red
Ideal comfort food: Hot chips
Most played song on playlist: “Killing Me Softly”, The Fugees
Go-to heels: Flats all the way
Signature cocktail: Mojito
For enquiries and more info on the label go here
Investment purchases often have a few more zeros in the price tag than your average chain store buy but when you factor in the longevity and its cost per wear you’re definitely getting a bargain. I’ve spoken in the past about my approach to buying designer goods that you won’t regret, but there are definitely certain pieces that will forever remain stylish. Add these to your wardrobe and I promise you’ll have a long and happy relationship.
If you’re going to splurge on a trench coat make it one by Burberry. The coat was designed by Thomas Burberry for military personnel in World War One to keep officers protected against wind and rain and the design has been around ever since. The hardware and fabrication are of course top notch but one glimpse of the iconic checked lining sets this trench above the rest. I promise a trench coat is one purchase that you will get plenty of use out of all year round. Plus if you’re after a unique touch, Burberry now offer a personalisation service that allows you to monogram the inside of your coat.
Chanel 2.55 bag
Everyone knows the quilted 2.55 bag by Chanel and whilst its ubiquitous it’s also one of the few designer bags that will not only appreciate in value (research has shown that the bag has increased in value by 70 per cent over the last six years) it’s also the kind of bag that will not date, will go with virtually everything you own and will always be a classic staple that you’ll be proud to carry. It’s a hefty investment I know, but if you’re going to splurge on a designer bag this one is definitely worth considering.
Cartier LOVE Bracelet
The ultimate in wrist candy the beautiful Cartier LOVE bracelet first came to prominence in the 1970s and has only grown more popular since its inception. Available in a variety of metals including yellow gold or rose gold plus if you’re really looking to splurge there’s also a version studded with diamonds this is one piece of jewellery that you’ll remain in love with.
Balenciaga moto jacket
I have had my Balenciaga leather jacket for years and its still the kind of piece that has remained in constant rotation in my wardrobe over the years. The perfect moto style jacket is ideal for wearing with everything from dresses to denim. I particularly loved Balenciaga’s design but designers like Saint Laurent, Tom Ford and Acne have all released their own versions of this jacket style. A major splurge it may be but one feel of the buttery leather, the sturdy metal hardware and the perfect fit will inspire instant love.
Chanel ballet flat
Ballet flats will always be a wardrobe staple but add a pair of interlocking Cs and you venture into try style classic territory. Whilst they’re not the type of shoe that you’d wear daily to run errands (they’re definitely a bit more special than your average ballet flat) they are an easy and stylish footwear option for those days when you just want to take a casual look up a notch. A close runner up in the shoe departmet would be the classic Gucci horsebit loafer. Over 60 years on and it’s still going strong.
Nothing beats buying a beautiful designer item but they’re often a significant investment so I always make sure I am strategic about what I’m purchasing to ensure there’s no buyer’s remorse involved. Here’s what I always look for…
Is it really popular?
I steer clear of the ‘it’ bag of the season. If I’m shopping for an everyday bag that’s going to be carrying everything from my essentials to my laptop then I make sure that I opt for something that’s a signature item for the brand but not ubiquitous. I don’t like having a designer bag that everyone has because I feel they go in and out of fashion just as quickly as they come in. Plus you don’t want people being able to immediately identify that your bag is from a 2014 collection! To combat this I always ask the shop assistant if it’s a style they intend to do again so it’s not so identifiable to a particular year.
Finding a unique style
I’m the complete opposite in my approach to evening bags and shoes. If I’m buying something special like a clutch I like to make sure they’re not making further runs of it because I want it to be a one-off. The same rule applies when I’m shopping for statement heels. I want them to be quite unique so I don’t want them coming back season after season.
Researching what’s out there
I used to do a lot of shopping whenever I went on an overseas trip but these days that’s impossible as a mum, especially now with two little girls to entertain. So most of my designer purchases are made online these days. I always make sure to visit various websites such as Net-a-Porter, Nordstrom and Matches Fashion to see what’s available. One way I make sure I’m only getting up to the minute releases is to click on the ‘What’s New’ section when I’m browsing websites. That way I’ll only be seeing current stock.
Double check the size
Shopping online at the high end e-tailers is often a little easier as doing returns is fairly straightforward if something isn’t quite right. However I always do a check on the size just to be sure it’s the right fit. If it’s true to size generally choosing your normal size will be fine, however if it’s not I always check if I’ve bought the brand before and see if there’s something in my closet that I can cross check the sizing against.
Always opt for classic
I’m all for taking a fashion risk or two but when you’re making a purchase that’s quite expensive it pays to think longevity. I always opt for neutral colours and opt for classic styles so I know that I’ll end up with something that will last in my wardrobe season after season.