Australian brand Zimmermann debuts at Paris Fashion Week

Written by the author Samantha Tse, CNN

Speaking backstage on Monday after the brand’s open-air runway debut in Paris at the Petit Palais, Zimmermann’s creative director Nicky Zimmermann told CNN Style that after nearly three years of travel restrictions due to Covid-19, the brand was ready ” to do something different”. .” And Paris Fashion Week was a natural choice.

“We made the decision in the time of Covid,” said the designer. “We were in Australia making films and wanted to do something different, and Paris made sense as we’re evolving and growing the business.”

The Sydney-based label, known for its floral beachwear, resort and swimwear, previously showcased its collections at New York Fashion Week. But its presence in Europe continues to expand, Zimmermann said, and the brand has already outgrown the Paris office, which opened in 2019 and serves as Zimmermann’s European headquarters.

Zimmermann is opening a new store in Florence in a few days and more stores in Spain later this year.

“We like to open stores where we like. We have quite a few stores in Europe and it’s quite an important market for us,” explained Zimmermann.

Archive photos of the Wonderland City carnival became repeated prints in the collection. Credit: Monica Feud

The Spring/Summer 2023 collection, entitled ‘Wonderland’, was inspired by the stories Zimmermann’s grandmother told him about a giant Edwardian roller coaster that ran the length of Sydney’s Tamarama Beach. It was a walk in the 19th century. One of the main attractions of Bondi Aquarium in the late 19th century, and later the Wonderland City carnival that ran on the beach between 1906 and 1911.

“I wanted to do this story because I live there.” the designer said about Sydney, where he has lived for 20 years. “I wanted to make a story about then and now.”

While designing the collection, Zimmermann found archive photos of the carnival and mixed them with contemporary beach images to create the prints seen in the looks: swirling in asymmetrical skirt hems, mini dresses and silk kaftans. Prints also informed the season’s color palette of pastels, warm oranges and sunny yellows, as well as metallic gold, hidden rust and ecru.

Flowers have always been part of the Zimmermann aesthetic; this season, looks featured images and typography from early 1900s seed packets, reimagined as prints for silk joggers and matching crop tops, flares and floor-skimming maxi dresses.

Some looks featured bustiers and corsets, with baggy pants and voluminous skirts.

Some looks featured bustiers and corsets, with baggy pants and voluminous skirts. Credit: Peter White/Getty

Other standout looks included lace and ruffled skirts and white skirts, as well as bustiers paired with voluminous skirts and low-cut trousers for the girl who floats effortlessly between yacht parties and beach nightclubs.

The luxury beach theme was extended into the show’s soundtrack, which featured the voices of famous Australian women — including Kylie Minogue, Naomi Watts and Rose Byrne — sharing childhood memories of trips to Tamarama Beach.

“We wanted to do something that would connect people,” Zimmermann said of the soundtrack.

Founded by Nicky Zimmermann and her sister Simone in 1991, the company has grown to become one of the most successful brands in the Australian fashion industry, with more than 50 stores worldwide, including three in France and 19 in the United States. Celebrity fans include Katie Holmes, Margot Robbie, Kendall Jenner and Beyoncé, who has worn Zimmermann’s designs at red carpet events and in her iconic “Formation” music video.

Image above: A model walks the runway at Zimmermann’s Spring/Summer 2023 show.