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International Women's Day 7 March 2022

Women of the Fashion World

Celebrate the amazing women that lead the fashion industry this International Women's Day.

It’s the day of the year when we look at how far us women have come with closing the gender gap. In the fashion industry, we see women standing up for women - no one can understand our bodies and how we want to wear better than our lady friends. They are empowering women daily through fashion. In light of this special day, Team Monde has curated a list of our favourite female-lead brands.

Words By Team Monde


Female founder:

Amber Sceats

Story of the brand:

Amber Sceats started her self-titled jewellery brand in 2012, taking her family’s watch business as the springboard. Starting in Sydney, Amber Sceats has branched out to the world. She has successfully put the brand’s name on the radar for the uniqueness and creativity in her design.

Her dazzling design in the hand of the finest Italian and French craftsman promises high quality and irresistible accessories.

Why we love it:

Amber Sceats’ design reflects her very own charisma and personal inspiration. Her love for accessories started at a young age and she has always used them as a way of expressing herself. Now she’s encouraging women to show their charm through her design. Her love for art, travel and architecture was engraved into every piece of jewellery produced.

We see the breath of nature in the organic texture and trace of architecture in the structure of her design. There is such a fresh love for creation from Sceats and her brand.

Every piece is delicate, sophisticated and intricate. Her appreciation for art and the reflection of it on her design give the products a contemporary and timeless sensation. Amber Sceats’s line of jewellery is not just simply accessories but really is a statement of self-expression.


Female founder:

Camilla Freeman-Topper

Story of the brand:

CAMILLA AND MARC was founded in 2003 by the siblings Camilla Freeman-Topper and Marc Freeman. Ever since its launch, it has been a leading brand for women in high-end fashion, not only in Australia but also worldwide.

Behind the stunning products of the brand is Camilla’s creativity. Her design was sharpened and refined at the WhiteHouse Institute of Design in Sydney and the Accademia Italiana Arte Moda in Florence, Italy.

Why we love it:

CAMILLA AND MARC offers a wide range of collections, from ready to wear to accessories, including many item categories and aesthetics.

The extended options open up the invitation to women of different interests and needs. Every product embodies the brand’s core message of luxury and convenience for women in both design and materials.

CAMILLA AND MARC cares about honouring women’s bodies and creating pleasure for customers, revealing in their choice of luxe garments. Camilla directs the design to focus on simplicity and elegance. Items are structured with a timelessness and innovation mindset.

We can see the mixed essence of both femininity and masculinity and the harmony in its silhouettes. CAMILLA AND MARC, through their products, creates a space for women to transform and thrive with style and confidence.


Female founder:

Carla Zampatti

Story of the brand:

Carla Zampatti launched her wholesale business in 1965 in Sydney and began to display her design in her Surry Hills boutique seven years later. Coming from Italy, Zampatti had a global mindset and a keen eye for what the Australian fashion industry was missing at the time.

Over the decades, her brand grew and gained recognition in Australia and around the world. She was awarded the Australian Fashion Laureate in 2008. Carla Zampatti was an iconic fashion designer who had a clear vision for women’s empowerment through what we wear.

Why we love it:

Carla Zampatti’s vision was reflected in the fashion house’s design – women’s need and comfort in the forefront. Through their design, the brand has allowed women to feel confident and influential by power dressing.

Throughout 57 years long of operation, Carla Zampatti is able to keep its core values consistent and manifest them into every piece produced.

It is classic and elegant with the iconic clean lines and solid colours design. Though staying true to Zampatti’s vision, the brand has never stopped exploring and expanding its palette of styles.

Carla Zampatti is successful in harmonizing both timeless and trendy elements, making them relevant to women of all generations.


Female founder:

Courtney Price

Story of the brand:

Courtney Price launched Elka Collective in 2014 in Melbourne, being both the founder and designer of the brand. Coming from a graphic design background, she integrated the graphic, interior and fashion elements into her design.

Her creativity in different disciplines of design gave her a competitive edge at the fashion helm. Price’s vision is to bring women relaxation and stylishness in every Elka Collective garment.

Price’s design in natural fabrics meeting premium makers produces easy to wear yet luxurious wardrobe options for women.

Why we love it:

Elka Collective seeks to provide garments that go beyond trends and work effortlessly into women’s everyday wardrobe. It offers minimalist and timeless fashion – every product is simple and versatile.

The brand’s approach gives women comfort in their everyday outfits and the space to be creative. Instead of running after trends, Elka Collective focuses on valuing effective and high-quality fashion.

The brand’s garments are knitted together with feminine, contemporary and classic components.

Courtney Price’s uniqueness in designing is also expressed in her architectural silhouettes, giving her collections accuracy in structure and an energetic, yet comfortable look.

The brand’s aesthetic is inspired by Melbourne’s relaxed lifestyle, creating staple pieces for a modern and laid-back style.


Female founders:

Alexandra Smart and Genevieve Smart

Story of the brand:

Ginger & Smart was founded in 2002 by two sisters Alexandra and Genevieve Smart from Sydney. The two women contributed their unique talent to their business – Alexandra with her business and publishing background and Genevieve with her designing talent.

The Smart sisters seek to produce a fashion house with quality, essentialness and uniqueness as the core value. Their vision for the brand is to empower and help women to express their individuality confidently.

They also show a genuine concern for the sustainable future of the fashion industry by the choice of materials and design.

Why we love it:

Ginger & Smart’s design has a great focus on the bold expression in silhouettes and patterns. They definitely do not shy away from maximalist fashion from the beginning, yet every item can seamlessly glide into every women’s wardrobe.

The brand is a harmonious mixture of romantic and daring, fragile and chic essence. Their collections work extendedly to multiple needs and aesthetics, from workwear to special events.

Ginger & Smart also have been famously known for the broad colour and print palettes, neutral to bright and graphic to floral.

Their garments are richly inspired by futuristic features and natural traces. The brand has brought positive energy and distinctive aesthetic to women’s wardrobe staples.


Female founder:

Lee Mathews

Story of the brand:

The eponymous brand Lee Mathews was founded over 20 years ago and has made a name for its timeless elegance.

As a former creative director for Vogue Australia, Matthews has brought her creative power to her designs since its humble beginnings in Sydney.

Why we love it:

Effortless glamour is what we see in Lee Mathews collections. Earthy hued cotton shirts, silk slip dresses and linen, print maxi dresses are both wardrobe staples and statements.

We love that Mathews has endeavoured to create sustainable creations by repurposing vintage fabrics and using bio-degradable materials.

The Harriet Dress brings us silk georgette in a geometric print that is quintessential versatile dressing. Pair it with a heel and chunky jewellery for an evening look or simple slides for every day.

The Frankie Mini Dress is the perfect addition to any lovers of LBD, with its puff sleeves and vertical pleating, these simple details elevate everyday dressing to create a sophisticated look. Shop our favourites from powerhouse Lee Matthews below.


Female founder:

Sophie Holt

Story of the brand:

Founded over 80 years ago in Sydney, Oroton has made a name for itself as a brand of effortless elegance and luxury. In 2018 Sophie Holt became the brand’s creative director reinvigorating the brand with a modern take on its rich heritage.

Since leading Oroton, Holt has expanded its production to offer collections of apparel that exemplify sophisticated simplicity.

Why we love it:

Oroton offers us diversity in choice from its supple leather to fresh ready-to-wear fabrics. The Oroton identity has combined style and utility, to deliver timeless pieces that are simultaneously modern but relaxed.

Its metallic embellishments across its classic accessories have become synonymous with quality craftsmanship and impeccable design.

The Liv Small Day Bag is created from fresh white leather and its practical top handle and shoulder strap makes it’s the perfect bag to transition from day to night. Embrace Orton’s elevated design with its Madeline studs, this modern take on classic gold jewellery, will add a touch of elegance to any ensemble.

The Gathered Silk-Taffeta Maxi Dress from Oroton’s Resort 22’ collection cements its status as a brand that does it all.  This voluminous silhouette in a saccharine hue celebrates the freedom of a new season and forecasts a post-pandemic optimism.

Shop some of our favourite Oroton pieces below.


Female founders:

Pip Edwards & Claire Tregoning

Story of the brand:

P.E Nation launched in 2016 with their very first activewear capsule collection by former colleagues and best friends, Pip Edwards and Claire Tregoning, taking the activewear market from basic to bold almost overnight.

The label has taken the world by storm and is now stocked in over 250 retailers across the globe.

Edwards and Tregoning have quickly expanded into unisex streetwear, snow gear and accessories, all the while keeping their seasonal signature colour palettes front and centre.

P.E Nation demonstrates how a home-grown Australian brand with an unwavering vision and such a distinctive brand aesthetic can make it big on the world athleisure stage.

Why we love it:

Edgy, bright and unapologetic, P.E Nation holds a special place in our wardrobes for its ability to instantly transform not only your look but your mood.

We love how P.E Nation cleverly combines the functionality of activewear and the streetwear cool factor into wearable pieces that are every bit as comfortable on a lunch date as they are in the gym.


Female founder:

Rebecca Vallance

Story of the brand:

Rebecca is the talented and feminine force behind her eponymous label, launched at Paris Fashion Week in 2011. Originally hailing from the West-Victorian town of Ballarat, Vallance’s love affair with fashion can be traced back to primary school, where her Dad recalls that her obsession with runways and glossy magazines was “always a part of her.”

After studying business at Victoria Universality and soon after nabbing Toni Maticevski as a PR client of hers, Vallance set her sights on the more creative side of fashion, design.

Whilst not officially trained fashion design, Vallance’s passion for shapes and her own vision propelled her to launch her own label in London with now husband, alongside a team of patternmakers and seamstresses.

Fast forward to 2021, where Vallance brought her label back to Australian soil at the Afterpay Australia Fashion week, where she showcased her ‘Holiday’ Collection, which celebrated 10 years of Rebecca Vallance.

Why we love it:

Nobody nails feminine and fun tailoring quite like Rebecca Valance. The queen of celebrating the female form with luxurious fabrications and a colour palette to excite, each collection perfectly fuses office appropriate and elegance in a symphony of colour and accoutrements.

Most recently Vallance has introduced a resort collection which brings to market swimwear and coverups that scream Mykonos and St Tropez luxury. Available in a cohort of vacation-inducing colours and flattering styles, your next beach holiday is sorted thanks to Vallance!


Female founders:

Nicky and Simone Zimmermann

Story of the brand:

Solidifying their place in fashion over two decades, Zimmermann is an Australian design powerhouse. Founded in Sydney back in 1991, the two sisters eponymous label became rapidly recognised and loved for its iconic romantic silhouettes and paradise wear.

One half of the founding duo, Nicky Zimmermann, previously attended design school in Sydney before making clothes from their parents garage to sell at markets on the weekends. Since the ‘90s, the brand has exploded across the globe, showing at a variety of prestigious fashion weeks and being worn by A-listers and models alike.

Now, Zimmermann has flagship stores around Australia, and internationally, as well as being stocked at the likes of NET-A-PORTER, Harrods, Saks Fifth Avenue, Harvey Nichols and MatchesFashion.

Why we love it:

Zimmermann has always stayed true to their signature bohemian style, and that’s why we love them.

From floating skirts and tiered dresses, to gorgeous paisley prints and luxurious textiles, Zimmermann’s designs have always been aesthetically appealing and of the highest of quality.

Not only loved by Australians, the brand has become a favourite to fashion lovers worldwide due to the romantic and beautiful overall appeal.


Female founders:

Sami Lorking-Tanner and Evangeline Titilas

Story of the brand:

The brand for ‘it girls’, off-duty-models and fashion amateurs, With Jean makes comfortable and beautiful statement pieces for everyone.

Founded by best friends Sami Lorking-Tanner and Evangeline Titilas back in 2017, the brand quickly grew in popularity – all thanks to the internet. Debuting with a vintage inspired collection that felt equal parts Parisian and Australian summery, With Jean was the talk of the town on just about everyone’s Instagram feeds.

As of last year, the brand extended their range to include fun swimwear, complete with retro floral and newspaper prints.

The pair have continued (and we’re sure will continue) with their success by designing and “creating collections to suit our ever-evolving fashion world, we stay true to creating the pieces [that they] love and need.”

Why we love it:

Some of our favourite pieces from the last couple of years of Australian design are With Jean favourites.

Namely the original Andi Dress with its comfortable stretchy material that drapes like a dream, and the cute and colourful Cindy Corset that truly goes great with anything from a maxi skirt to a pair of trusty jeans.

Here at Monde, we’re keeping our eye on With Jean’s movements – ready to be inspired by what they create next.