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Atea Oceanie Makes New Zealand Normcore, With a New York Accent


BLOG_dyptich_2Even though Atea means “distant and remote” in Polynesian languages, designer Laura Myers of Atea Oceanie was in a New York state of mind when she created her Autumn/Winter 2014 collection. For the Uptown, Downtown collection, Myers drew upon her years of living in New York as a transplanted Kiwi. She explained to that she “wanted to combine the elegance and polish of uptown with a sporty and relaxed downtown look.”

Entering into her second year of business, Myers has built a cult following for her unfussy aesthetic. Though the customer base is diverse, there is one common thread: Fashion victims need not apply. “What you put on in the morning shouldn’t dominate or overpower,” Myers says. “The personality has to shine first, and clothes should speak second. Our pieces are stylish and fashionable, but not exhaustibly trendy.” Looks like that notion is catching on. For A/W 2014, the brand will wholesale for the first time, with shipments going out to the online shop of The Apartment and Japan’s Isetan.

Exquisitely simple shirtdresses, very clean suiting, and matter-of-fact coats (all featured with Stan Smith Adidas shoes in the lookbook) are pieces that offer multiple use and destined to become wardrobe anchors. In fact, as normcore continues to excite the media, Myers laughs over the coincidence, as she has been championing that look for years. “If that word means dressing fashionably with great cuts and fabric, but under the radar and nothing too, well, in-your-face,” says Myers, “then yes, Atea Oceanie is happily out as being normcore.”

Designer Update