There’s the ease of online clothes shopping and then there’s all the benefits of getting up close and personal with the products: appreciating the vibrancy of hand-printed silks, experiencing the fluidity of how a piece drapes and feeling the textures of fabrics.
Home to the largest number of boutiques in the State, Rundle Street East is the pièce de résistance in South Australia’s shopping repertoire. The fashion mecca is home to labels such as Zimmermann, Aje and Jack London, mixed with carefully curated vintage boutiques and local designers like Naomi Murrell. When the compulsion to shop comes knocking, the East End is Adelaide’s obvious choice.
Sister duo, Nicky and Simone Zimmermann, have been filling the hearts and wardrobes of Australian women for over 25 years with their eponymous label Zimmermann. The past few years has seen a rapid ascent of Zimmermann’s trademark sleek take on bohemian into the regular rotation of A-list celebrities including Beyoncé, Kendall Jenner and Margot Robbie. The newest jewel in their crown of 27 stores is the recently expanded flagship store on Rundle Street as the label seeks to cater for their ever-expanding Adelaide customer base.
A quick stroll in your kitten heels will bring you to the Aje store. The four walls enclose a melting pot of the yin and yang elements that inspire designers Adrian Norris and Edwina Robinson. The décor encapsulates the femininity, fierceness and urban-effortlessness that are a constant presence in each collection.
“Adelaide is such a hidden gem and holds a special place in our hearts.,” said Edwina.
“It’s such a progressive community with a wonderful energy. We were very excited to open an Aje boutique in the hub of Rundle Street and have been very warmly embraced by the community. We were drawn to this precinct as we fell in love with the relaxed boutique shopping environment, with its surrounding cafes and strip vibe. We feel it offers a very special and unique shopping experience.”
One street over lies Ebenezer place, an oasis of independent designers and one-off treasures. Leonard St.’s signature playful prints on classic silhouettes are an ode to the imaginative spirit of childhood stories. Relove boasts a 100 per cent local line up which is no easy feat when you stock nearly 70 labels. You’ll also find Adelaide’s biggest collection of all things vintage Americana, Midwest Trader.
As Vogue Festival returns from 19-20 October, in its second year as part the Adelaide Fashion Festival, it just makes sense that the East End is a major player in the festivities with a street party that will take over Vardon Place, the chance to get a custom fashion illustration portrait and more.
Hot tip: lock down your look for Spring/Summer with the exclusive Vogue Festival offers which will be unveiled mid-October.
If your discerning palette extends beyond ready-to-wear, you are in luck. The East End is filled with boutique bars which are big on personality and some of the best dining spots in the State (and Australia!).
If you’re feeling fancy, head over to Orana for a culinary adventure that hails native ingredients as the hero. District 4 will transport you to the bustling streets of Saigon with authentic Vietnamese dishes while the revamped Stag Public House feeds the soul with their good ol’ fashioned pub meals. Awake from the food coma with a tipple at Hellbound Wine Bar, East End Cellars or Mr. Goodbar.
One thing is certain, fervent foodies and the style-savvy are simpatico in their love of the East End.