As Fashion Weeks around the world go virtual, fashionistas are looking for ways to find their fashion fix. For Queenslanders there is no need to go virtual. You can find everything you need by following the Scenic Rim Fashion and Design Trail. It’s a fabulous way to look amazing and unique whilst still supporting our country cousins.There may not be the battle for front row seats or red carpets but this fashion experience may just be the one you need right now, and best of all you can get there by driving just under an hour from Brisbane or the Gold Coast.
One Scenic Rim global fashion success story is denim brand- Outland Denim. Meghan Markle almost broke the internet when she first wore a pair of Outland Denim Jeans. She wore their ‘ Harriet’ design on the royal tour of Australia and New Zealand and this style sold out within hours. Outland Denim is a brand created here in Queensland to give jobs to those most in need in Cambodia.
This denim brand is ethical, sustainable and stylish and is headquartered right here at Mount Tamborine. It was founded by Mount Tamborine locals, James and Erica Bartle. Although not available on the mountain, this local brand is available online and in stores globally. In Queensland visit James and West at Burleigh Heads or The Common Thread Store in Bulimba to try them for yourself. A real home grown success story!
If hats are your thing look no further than Mad Natter Hats just outside of Boonah. Owner and designer, Natalee Schelbach makes these stunning one of a kind Australian wool and felt hats on her farm. You can purchase your own bespoke hat in a range of elegant colours and shapes and who doesn’t need a hat in the hot Queensland sun? Look for Natalee’s designs online https://www.madnatter.com.au/
If you are heading to Mount Tamborine for the day it’s worth stopping in to Mountain House Co., a collective of carefully selected pieces from global and local designers and artisans, including Guabana – based bag and jewellery buyer, Fin and Ivy. Conveniently, Mountain House Co. is located at the entrance to a cellar door where you can enjoy award winning wine and a bite to eat. Bliss!
Just south of Mount Tamborine in Canungra is Holli Dolli, a gorgeously unique boutique owned by the horse, people and fashion loving, Holli Souvannavong. Holli’s range is western and country meets boho gypsy. Also in Canungra you find My Country Escape, celebrating Australian brands and ethical fashion. Just a few doors down is My Shoe Vault featuring designs sourced throughout the world by Nora Jones. Of course this book lover will always pop into Canungra Books and Art, which is also home to some incredible vintage clothes. Ssh, don’t tell everyone!
Maiocchi mavens rejoice because while you are driving west you can stop into Kalico Country in Beaudesert which will reward you with a range including cult labels like Brisbane’s Maiocchi, Ping Pong and Elm. I just happened to have bought a new and colourful Spring skirt from Elm and you already know my love of Maiocchi.
Further on to Boonah and there’s a treasure trove of charming stores to explore. Take a gander at Duck Junction, stockists of quality gifts, homeware and accessories. Just a little further along High Street and you reach a store that has barely changed in 75 years. Maynards has traded in hats, boots, fabric, clothing, haberdashery and manchester since 1944. Enjoy some old fashioned country service. You have been warned! You might be tempted to walk out with your very own Akubra.
Last year I visited the veggie bowl that is the small town of Kalbar for the Jericho Road Carrot Couture Fashion Show. Jericho Road designed by country sisters, Chloe and Kate, is a favourite with fashionistas in these parts. Yes, I am looking at you Gen Windley!
Stop in at Kalbar to visit Elegance & Grace 4309, a homeware and gift store that stock famous scenic rim products, wardrobe staples from Jade Country Collection and amazing metal sculptures from local artisan Nathan Kliese of Cowboy Nathan’s Creations. Check out BMK Collective on George Street where avid collectors, Bee and Michael, share their unique treasures sourced from around the globe.
You can even get your craft group together for a weekend of fashion and craft. Try Sewing with Wendy – creating bespoke pieces in the historical surrounds of the sewing school based at the Old Lavaral School on the way to Christmas Creek- worth the side track. Back up on Tamborine Mountain you can book in for a workshop with renowned textile artist Bec Andersen, to produce your own glorious hand – tufted rug in her stunning home studio. If you’re like me you might just purchase one of Bec’s fabulous creations to take home.
This is just a small selection of the Scenic Rim Fashion and Design Trail and the best thing is that unlike the catwalk you can pick and choose the direction you go in. It’s easy to plan a day, a weekend or even a week exploring this scenic region and if you ‘ buy from the bush’ your country cousins and your unique wardrobe will thank you. For a more comprehensive list of things to do, spots to stop and feast, wine, dine and stay go to www.visitscenicrim.com.au Now your only dilemma is what should I wear? A pair of Outland Denim jeans might be a good place to start, just ask Meghan.
Freelance writer, wife and mother of three sons, occasional supply teacher and aspiring romance author, Michelle Beesley can be most often found in a coffee shop chatting with friends or beside a rugby field cheering on her favourite teams.
Michelle is a prolific—albeit reluctant—traveller, keen walker, bookworm and yoga enthusiast who loves anything pink or sparkly (including champagne!).