Miranda Kerr, Elle MacPherson, Abbey Lee Kershaw, Shanina Shaik—Australia has certainly never lacked for bombshell supermodels. And now, there’s a new breakout talent among their ranks: Victoria Lee, the 27-year-old model from New South Wales who has had something of a banner year, walking in last November’s Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show and landing on the cover of Elle Australia’s Rising Star issue alongside 13 Reasons Why star Katherine Langford. And while Lee is no stranger to walking the runway, having attended Australian Fashion Week for nearly a decade, this season she took it in from the sidelines, sitting front row at Camilla and Marc’s 15th anniversary show that also served as the kickoff to the Resort 2019 season that wrapped up in Sydney on Thursday night. Here, Lee talks about her favorite Fashion Week memories.
What is your earliest memory of Camilla and Marc? My first show ever for Fashion Week was Camilla and Marc. It was the very beginning of my career; I was so nervous! But also so excited to be a part of the show. I remember the casting, my fitting, and meeting Camilla and Marc for the first time. They were both so kind and encouraging. I’m very thankful for their support throughout my career.
What did you think of the brand’s 15th anniversary show? I thought it was incredible. The space was transformed into a landscape like something from another planet. The lighting, sound, and music transported you to another world, but at closer inspection was a nod to the Australian Outback, with native grasses and the sounds of Australian wildlife incorporated into the music. The models walked through a set of boulders, red dirt, and rubble, which contrasted the spectacular fabrics and beautiful silhouettes of the collection. I’m especially coveting the classic Camilla and Marc blazer in soft pink. I love the contrast between the power of the structured blazer and the softness of the color. Also a gorgeous black floral-print dress and black off-the-shoulder double-breasted dress that I actually had the pleasure of wearing to the show.
When did you attend your first Australian Fashion Week? Spring 2009. I was blown away by the work and amount of people involved. I didn’t have any concept of what actually goes into Fashion Week. The creativity of the designers, the talented hair and makeup artists, producers, set designers, the venues. It was my first exposure to the craziness that is Fashion Week; the contrast of the hectic energy backstage to the serene calm of the runway is amazing. It was and still is so exciting.
How does Australian Fashion Week differ from others around the world? Australian Fashion Week is so diverse. We really have an incredibly talented industry that is very unique. Not only in the collections themselves but also in the way designers make use of the incredible backdrop that is Sydney—the beaches, sea baths, the city, the Harbour, the Opera House. I recently went to a show that was in a beautiful, leafy garden. I think this is so unique to Sydney, to have so much variety in where to actually put on the shows.
What are three words that describe your personal style? Comfortable, classic, effortless but chic. I hope anyway! Sorry, that’s four.
What is your daily uniform? Usually, high-waisted Levi 501s, a comfy tee paired with a cute pair of Gucci flats, or my Celine sneakers with a blazer or jacket. I like to mix high and low to create a comfortable yet put-together look.
Who do you look to for style inspiration? Rosie Huntington-Whitely, Emmanuelle Alt, and Cate Blanchett.
What’s your favorite piece in your closet right now? My favorite piece is my vintage denim jacket. I love that I can throw it over anything and that it’s worn perfectly, so it’s really soft.
What was your last purchase? My last purchase was a beautiful burgundy Celine bag with gold hardware.
Where’s your favorite place to shop in Sydney? David Jones.
How do you define Sydney style? I think we incorporate our laid-back lifestyle and relaxed attitude into our fashion but still pay attention to what’s happening overseas and incorporate that into our sense of style. So I’d say relaxed but unique and fashion-conscious.
What’s something you would never wear? Never say never!
Who do you think is the most stylish Australian? Cate Blanchett. She is consistently elegant and classic yet takes risks and has fun with fashion at the same time.