Australian Fashion Stylists
It’s been said many times that without styling, fashion is just clothes. Like gin and tonic, or lemon lime and bitters, one doesn’t work without the other. Since our earliest days, Cocktail Revolution has profiled the work of many Australian fashion stylists and here’s our rundown of the Australian stylists you should meet.
SYDNEY – WARRANG
One of Sydney’s most iconic stylists, Mikey Ayoubi is all about taking life and turning it into fashion. His signature style of quality, comfort and natural aesthetics have allowed him to dress some incredible and notable celebrities, from Hilary Swank to Yael Stone, Kylie Minogue for the 40th Anniversary of Vogue in 1999, Lara Worthington on the red carpet, and model Adut in Paris. His philosophy behind his style, which can be passed on to the new generation of stylists, is to study life, study design and the fine arts, and to get ready for life before plunging into fashion.
Working as a runway stylist, Jamie Azzopardi is known around Australian Fashion Week as a must-have stylist on your team. From styling celebrities and being a renowned culture blogger, Jamie’s worked with both the PayPal Melbourne Fashion Festival and Afterpay Australia Fashion Week. Working with the likes of Justin Cassin, Doc Martens, and other brands he collaborates with on his social media page, Jamie is quickly becoming the stylist to watch in real-time.
Isabella Mamas is one that prefers to style and be behind the scenes, than be the blogger in front of the lens. Every day is a highlight for Isabella because she is doing what she loves; from styling editorials to photo shoots for brands, she is intrigued by building ideas and surrounding herself with creatives. Her style can be described as eclectic, eccentric and fresh; she is now working as a Fashion Assistant for Vogue Australia.
Fernando Kularatne is a corporate stylist and image consultant at Personal Development Academy and is also a made to measure fitter for Oscar Hunt. From chemical waste management to pursuing a career in styling, Fernando’s story is one about following your dreams and tossing the rule book aside. As a men’s fashion stylist, Fernando is able to live his dream life every day and help men find their perfectly-fitted suit with made to measure options for special occasions, such as their wedding day. He knows there’s a stigma to break down as there is a misconception that being stylish is fashionable and men don’t fall under the category. Fernando is breaking down stereotypes and showing men of all walks of life how to step up their style game with simple and sophisticated details.
Arguably one of Australia’s best, Rhys Ripper has now founded his own mens fashion mag featuring his own editorial shoots, cobber. He’s styled some of Australia’s leading runways including at Australian Fashion Week, the Melbourne Fashion Festival and Country to Couture at The Darwin Art Fair. Clients include RM Williams, Aje and Levi’s, while Rhys’s editorial work for GQ is amongst his standout assignments. Add Marie Claire, Harpers Bazaar, Oyster Magazine and Vice and you’re only just getting started on the breadth of his work.
Regarded as the doyen of international and Australian Fashion Stylists, world-renowned Mark Vassallo is one of the key ingredients that go into almost any major fashion runway, including the Melbourne Fashion Festival and Australian Fashion Week. More than a fashion stylist, he is a Creative Director sought out by the biggest brands in the industry. After an editorial with Australian Style, he started with Vogue at the ripe old age of 23. He told them he was 30! New York beckoned and of course he’s never looked back. His career spans from London to New York and Sydney in between. Names like Scarlett Johansson, Sigourney Weaver, Mick Jagger, Kylie Minogue and Nick Cave roll-off-the tongue in a who’s who of celebrities he’s styled.
MELBOURNE – NAARM
Having recently worked on the Australian Open x Ralph Lauren campaign in 2022 as well as Sportsgirl, Champion, New Balance, Mecca Cosmetica, and notable others, Jade Leung is known for her outgoing personality and versatility in the fashion world. Once assisting Alastair McKimm during her time in New York City, Jade’s advice for aspiring stylists is to assist on as many shoots and campaigns as possible to gain exposure to the fashion world.
Stylist for the amazing aria award winning singer Thelma Plum, Karinda Mutabazi works with a lot of musicians. Her clients also include the amazing Erki-Yvon, Country Road, Radical Yes, Emporium Melbourne, runway shows and events at the Melbourne Fashion Festival, MFW, Australilan Fashion Week and David Jones. Add to her amazing client list Network 10’s The Project and ABC’s Would I Lie to You along with her latest work dressing Rhys Nicholson for the comedy gala and his appearance and judge on the new season of Ru Paul’s Drag Race.
The woman behind ‘Style Identity’, Toula Vogdanos has been styling people for over 20 years, keeping her ear to the ground and finger on the pulse for all things fashion, while bringing out confidence in her clients. She loves to give people options they usually wouldn’t pick up off the rack, and helping them see themselves in a new light – offering every day options that helps them excel in work and socially is what sets Toula’s soul on fire. From styling for professional headshots, to bra-fitting expert, and offering bespoke suits for women, Toula loves to see her clients happy and confident with a new lease on life.
A slow fashion stylist, Jenna Flood focuses her energies on embracing and encouraging slow fashion and talking about the negative impacts that fast fashion has on our planet and the industry. Whether it’s shopping for preloved clothes, finding sustainable brands, or showing people what they own can be styled differently before buying new, Jenna takes slow fashion seriously. She styles personal clients as well as photoshoots, and loves to educate her audience about slow fashion; plus she styled Four Paws Australia for their ‘Wear It Kind’ campaign and has styled looks for Melbourne Fashion Week in 2019, and has featured in Vogue Australia in October 2021.
Spending the last decade in senior fashion marketing roles, stylist and photographer Poppy Key has always had a love for high end fashion, with a passion for helping brands uniquely position themselves using her creative edge. Growing up in London, Poppy was exposed to design and fashion at a young age and is now a well-known commercial and editorial stylist in Melbourne. Her style can be described as comfort, glamour and quality. Peta’s clients have included Vogue Australia, Clinique, Westfield and Mollini, Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue.
ADELAIDE – TARNDANYA
Working on brand campaigns to photo shoots through her marketing career, Michelle Beltrame found her passion in fashion styling, and has always dreamt of being in the fashion industry. Her style is all about keeping it classic with a few touches of on-trend items that can make an outfit pop. She was recently named the Australian Style Institute’s Stylist of the Year 2021, and loves to create incredible outfits through commercial, editorial and personal styling.
Tracey Bryans is a proud Narungga woman, renowned for her expertise in personal, editorial and home styling. With a curious eye for style, she creates captivating looks for clients and campaigns, always infusing her editorials with meaningful narratives and showcasing local designers. Tracey firmly believes that style transforms lives, generating confidence and enhancing productivity. She emphasises that the way one dresses impacts their emotions and self-perception, communicating volumes about their personality.
Well-known and respected stylist Lauren Dilena has expanded her brand into becoming an ambassador and event host. An all-rounder, Lauren is a personal, commercial and editorial stylist, having worked with the likes of Turia Pitt, Samantha Harris and Bill & Guiliana Rancic. Most recently Lauren styled high-profile soccer star Josh Cavallo for the Australian Magazine. Big name brands Lauren’s worked with include Midas Shoes, Yalumba and Health Partners Optical. Versatile!
Styling since 2015 for a Salon she worked in, then launching her Freelancing Styling service in 2017, Zena Najjar has made a name for herself amongst locals as Minutiae of Style. Zena is all about staying true to yourself and keeping on brand. She has styled many fashion editorials locally and nationally, and styles A-listers like Teresa Palmer, G-Nation, and others. Zena’s personal style is all about being chic, edgy and cool.
After studying with Australian Style Institute, Clair McKay began working with local creatives to create her signature dramatic and over the top looks. Working with international fashion magazines and creatives in the industry, Claire has also been involved in production design for short films and mini-series. Of late, Claire is completing her Bachelor of Creative Arts [Fashion], with her 3rd year graduate collection Taboo Society being showcased at the Flinders University and TAFE SA graduate fashion show in May 2022.
Mary Lawas, otherwise known as Mary Franz, is an all-round creative who takes her style and taste through fashion editorials and photoshoots. Her style can be described as feminine, comfortable and classic; always look to quality over quantity in fashion and in life. She’s currently an ambassador for FON Salon and has her own creative outlet for her artworks, and is currently in her third year for Bachelor of Contemporary Arts at the University of South Australia.
PERTH – BOORLOO
After winning the Australian Style Institute’s Stylist of the Year in 2016, Juvelle Behrendorff has taken her styling career to awesome heights. She’s a known hustler and always works hard for her clients, whether it’s creating social media content or styling looks at the Telstra Perth Fashion Festival. Juvelle’s style can be described as contemporary, tailored and eclectic.
Starting as an intern for a local Perth fashion collective, Lilly Smeulders found her signature look is dependent on mood and the weather. She loves to create minimalists and classic looks, with neutrals becoming her latest obsession. Her freelance work in styling fashion shoots, she knows if she wasn’t a stylist she’d be working in fashion to a degree. She has been published in Elegant, Lyun, Horizont and Faddy magazines.
Studying under Ivanna Fontana in Perth and interning with Jonté Morgan, Andrea Lewin found her passion by filling in for a shoot where her mentor couldn’t be there, and the rest is history. Often being told she doesn’t look like a stylist, Andrea has taken the judgement and shown her talent through her work. She has been working with IMG models, describing her unique style as minimal, edgy and quirky.
GEELONG – DJILANG
Growing up and seeing a lack of representation in fashion, including lack of size and racial diversity in the industry, Geelong’s own Emelia Morris is all about advocating for diversity in fashion. While she knows there’s still a lot of work to be done, Emelia is passionate about helping her clients on an individual scale. Through styling, she has helped her clients, among the likes of Allira Potter, this fashion editor of GT Magazine brings out the confidence and authenticity of her clients by building genuine, long term relationships. Emelia won the Australian Style Institute’s 2020 “One to Watch” award, and is working with notable brands to bring size inclusivity to the forefront of Australian fashion.