Bondi Born founder Dale McCarthy just wants to make you look fabulous. “We search the world for the highest quality fabrics that are sustainable, ethically made and have technical properties that make womens bodies look fabulous,” she tells me over clanging plates at Totti’s in Bondi, the scene for today’s alfresco presentation. “The inspiration for our collection every year is our amazing fabrics. It’s always our starting point.”
Against the scurry of waiters in white and parched media throwing back Aperol Spritzes like they hadn’t drunk in weeks (they had, FYI), McCarthy goes on to explain how Bondi Born was in fact not actually born in Bondi. “I went to Europe and spent the first two years selling in Europe which went very well, there’s a lot of women who like to buy luxury swimwear in that market.” It’s an interesting concept. A palpably Australian brand sets up shop off shore, does exceptionally well, then returns home to enter its local market. It’s kind of the inverse to what every other Australian brand does. Instead of building a brand locally, gaining momentum and then taking that abroad with high hopes and that famous Australian optimism, McCarthy proved herself globally first.
But of course, a brand with Bondi – Australia’s most famous beach – in the title needs some kind of homecoming. “It definitely made sense for us to have a home in Australia, so we came here two years ago and it’s going very well, the Australian woman loves it,” McCarthy beams. “I have women saying I’ve never seen swimwear like this before because I just don’t get exposed to it in the Australian market.”
Today, that swimwear came to life. With white-washed walls, creeping vines and deckchair dining, Totti’s, the trendy Italian bolthole in Bondi proved the perfect setting for a resort collection rich in Riviera-dressing. Inspired by “the colours of the Mediterranean”, Bondi Born’s “Solanum” collection revealed a vast and varied palette rich in deep purples, oranges, greens and of course, those Mediterranean blues.
Silhouettes indulged the clean and the lean; beautifully languid and soft, they fell around the form at just the right places. A mix of simple swim separates and contemporary one-pieces; at its most irresistible, a one-shouldered black malliot with ribbon detailing so chic it made you want to book a ticket to the Med in that very moment.
And all cut in the finest Japanese and Italian fabrications, because at the heart of Bondi Born is undeniable quality. “It’s made in Australia with the world’s best fabric, it costs more but our customer is happy to pay it because she gets quality,” adds McCarthy. Swimwear made to go the distance, be it Capri or Clovelly, Bondi Born is the kind of swimwear you keep – and cherish – for years to come.
It’s the swimwear we dream of, the swimwear we long to wear…in Capri, Bondi or under any hot sun.