It may be edging into winter in Australia, but with Memorial Day just around the corner in the U.S., Nicky Zimmermann figured the time was right to open up shop in Los Angeles. “We are always trying to get that feeling of the memory of an idyllic summer’s day, and how that made you feel. Summer is very much our season,” the designer of the eponymous swimwear collection told Style.com from her home base in Sydney’s Tamarama, right off of Bondi Beach. She may be far from California, but the West Coast, she said, always makes her feel right at home. “Every time I’m in L.A., I’m very comfortable there. It’ s very much like Sydney. The line is different from what’s already available there, but it definitely still fits in,” she said of the airy Robertson Boulevard boutique.
The new store (the first stateside) features a mix of Zimmermann’s signature swimwear, accompanying resort-wear, and ready-to-wear collections. “So many people start just doing swimsuits,” Zimmerman said, referring to the competitive and seasonal marketplace. “But we started as a ready-to-wear company, and the swim has always come from our ready-to-wear and what we do. That gives it something different.” That design ethos has informed swimwear with a certain focus on fashion—more than just skin-baring sex appeal. “We definitely touch on a very fashion end of swim, and [our customers] know to come to us for that.” Though the bikini may always be their best seller, a new focus may be taking hold. “In Australia, we sell one-pieces really well. It’s something we’ve focused on in the last few seasons. They’re very corset-looking, very sexy, with lace-enriched detailing. We definitely have a market for that.” The swimwear is balanced with the line’s ode to day dressing. The new collection, called Halcyon Days, was just shown at Australia’s Rosemont fashion week in Sydney (left, models preparing backstage for the runway). The new offerings feature textured natural fibers, light linens, and silk slub materials that are ideal for day with a light, summery feeling. “I design for the girl that’s right outside my front door in Tamarama and on Bondi. She’s not only beautiful, but she’s really stylish and cool. That’s the girl that I think about when I’m designing and choosing the prints and thinking about colors. And it’s now the same girl I see when I come to L.A.”