Canberra often cops a bad rap for how it’s a grey and more grey sea of lanyards and puffer jackets, only broken by the odd pair of colourful socks studded with characters from Rick and Morty.
However, it turns out there’s a strong undercurrent of interesting fashion on our streets, and two sisters have made it their job to find it.
The Instagram account Canberra Core showcases local ‘street style’, inspired by a viral social media trend that originated in major cities like Shanghai, Tokyo, Milan, Paris and New York prior to COVID.
The sisters – one with a background in fashion design and the other self-taught in photography – took to social media early last year and asked locals what they would like to see. The answer came back loud and clear: “Canberrans crave a platform to showcase their style and individuality,” say the sisters, who prefer to remain anonymous.
“There are so many creative and expressive artists and fashionable people in Canberra … We couldn’t find a platform where these people were being celebrated as they are in other major cities.”
The first post, captured with help from an iPhone and an old camera in May 2023, featured Gina “getting coffee … on No Name Lane”.
“All black fit, silver hardware, lace socks and Bose headphones,” the caption reads.
The page has since racked up nearly 9000 followers, built on a base of regular photos and video reels of young fashionistas who were going about their business before they were approached and invited to pose for a shoot. Confidence is key.
“Our street-style shoots are all spontaneous,” the founders say.
“We love talking to anyone who demonstrates confidence in their look and has evidently put effort into what they’re wearing … It’s not about following trends or fitting into societal norms, but celebrating authenticity and individuality.”
The locations vary, from Lonsdale Street and Exhibition Park to Verity Lane and even the Oz Comic-Con event in August 2023 – wherever there’s “buzz”.
Some of the outfits might not be to everyone’s taste, but the sisters are buoyed by the “overwhelmingly positive” reactions to Canberra Core.
“We love when people are flattered and complimented when we ask if we can take their photo. We’re told people are grateful we’re highlighting the creativity and diversity present in the local community.”
The page has recently spawned its own ‘COREMAG’ magazine, and the sisters host a COREMRKT fashion stall at several major markets around Canberra, most of the produce being thrifted. They say there’s a big push towards buying second-hand and making your own stuff among younger generations.
“We have various exciting plans in motion which extend past our usual posting,” the sisters say.
“Only bigger and better from here!”
Original Article published by James Coleman on Riotact.