Shopping in Melbourne


Since returning from my last Styling and Shopping trip to Melbourne, I’ve been asked where I went shopping and if it is easy to find your way around?


Melbourne is easy to navigate.


On this trip I tried the Sky Bus from the airport to Southern Cross station, a quick change and a free shuttle ride to the motel. It was economical and convenient.  Once settled in to your hotel you can plan your shopping trips.


Burke Street Mall is where you’ll find Myer, David Jones, Zara and many other fashion stores.


The GPO Melbourne is a historic listed building (I love the architecture) and where you’ll find H& M.


The Emporium Melbourne is great to stroll through and experience Australian and International designers.


The Block Arcade is in Collins Street and full of interesting shops, starting with Wittner Shoes, my favourite Australian shoe designer. Just a bit of history for you; Wittner shoes started as a family business in 1912. Haigs Chocolate is another favourite even if isn’t fashion – pick up some energy on your way around.


Melbourne Central is a new discovery and a shopping district in it’s own right, found when I had to catch the Frankston train to visit a client. I just had to make a detour before I caught the train.


DFO South Wharf is somewhere I just have to visit when I go to Melbourne; it’s easy to get around, has heaps of great buys, with brands like Mimico, Furla, Kate Spade, Marcs, Michael Kors and many more to be found. Its worthwhile checking out, even if you’re not a DFO Shopper.


It’s worth noting that most of the time I was able to walk around the CBD and across to South Wharf but if you’re not keen on walking most of it is in the Free Tram Zone. It’s easy and free to hop on and off the tram when travelling within that zone.


Outside of the CBD there are plenty of great shopping areas.  I went shopping with a client at DFO Moorabbin where we found heaps of bargains and a great variety of stores – Portmans, Review, Diana Ferrari, Strandbags, Jeans West to name but a few.


Eastlands Shopping Centre and Westfields Doncaster are also great shopping spots that I had the opportunity to visit with clients.


Chadstone is a true shopping experience, and one you need a whole day to wander around. If you are not a ‘shopper’ it can be a bit overwhelming though.  I didn’t get there this trip but if you get the chance you can grab the free Shuttle from Federation Square.


I needed a Vintage fix after shopping with clients in the Melbourne CBD and DFOs for a couple of days. So where did I go?

vintage rag 2

QV Shopping Complex is where I found American Rag, a neat and well laid out vintage store with a variety of men’s, women’s and children’s vintage garments.

Then, with only 2 hrs to spare, I headed down Swanston Street to the Nicholas Building, a heritage building with a beautiful glass dome ceiling. This is a great place to find vintage clothing.


First there is Vintage Sole, with a large variety of well-priced vintage garments and where it’s easy to spot what you’re looking for when you’re in a hurry. I made a quick purchase and moved on. On the first floor is the home of Retro Star vintage clothing. There is a huge variety of men and women’s clothing, shoes and accessories. I’ll definitely be back to try on the evening garments.

vintage collage

Have Fun on your next trip to Melbourne. I hope this gives you inspiration on where to shop while there.

Tips for the most effective Shopping trip



Tips and Hints


We all know how frustrating it can be when trying on garments in a dressing room on a shopping trip. I want to share my tips and hints on what to consider while you’re in there, to get the best out of your money and time.


Lighting –  the colours of the garment may look brighter in the daylight so  make sure you check if unsure.


Look directly at yourself in the mirror, not down. Looking down at yourself will make you appear larger.


Armholesask yourself, ‘is my bra showing? Is the armhole too tight and is it causing excess skin to pop out? Not a good look.


Shoulder straps– makes sure the straps sit firmly on your shoulders; there is nothing worse than fiddling around with your straps while you’re out at a function. You should be comfortable that they are in place.

shopping tips 2

Neckline – V Necklines suit most body shapes. If you’re small busted look for the current frill and ruffle trends, which will create the illusion of a larger bust. If you’re large busted go for open V necklines and keep it simple.



Waist lines -before you start your shopping spree, it very important to know whether a high-rise or mid-rise pant or jeans suits your body shape best.


Hemlines – For most women, dress or skirt hem lengths are on or above the knee. The length can also depend on the style of shoes you choose to wear with your outfit.


Button-up shirts –  make sure you’re not bursting out. If it’s a stretch fabric make sure the neckline fits you firmly otherwise it will keep slipping down.



Shoulder Jackets and tops with a set-in sleeve should have the seam sitting on your shoulder and not drooping off onto your arm.



Prints and patterns – the general rule is that large prints add volume and small prints and vertical stripes decrease volume and disguise any lumps or bumps. An example – if you are large busted avoid large flowers on your bust area!Patterns

Horizontal stripes  – they do say these add volume but I’ve found with most of my clients it can actually disguise any lumps or bumps and appear quite slimming, when teamed up with a longer line, plain jacket or vest.


Avoid loose, baggy and shapeless clothing. What I really want you to remember is that unless you’re going to wear it over your swimwear, worn poolside or at the beach, don’t wear it at all.


Before you purchase your next garment ask yourself ‘what am I going to wear it with and how many different outfits can I create with this garment?’

What is ‘Age Appropriate” ?

This question comes up all the time –


  • I’m 50,
  • I’m a mum now,
  • I’m over 60, I don’t want to look like mutton dressed up as lamb.
  • Should I throw away my jeans?
  • Can I still wear knee high boots?
  • Do I need to cut my hair?

Some women still believe in age-related fashion. I believe a number shouldn’t define you.


In my opinion, the 50 of today definitely isn’t the 50 of yesterday! I’ve met and styled many women in their 50s who are in amazing shape and can carry or ‘pull off’ many different outfits.


  • If a garment fits you well and you’re not bursting out of it;
  • If it skims your body shape and disguises the bits you’re not happy with and highlight the areas you love about yourself;
  • If the colour highlights your skin and makes your eyes sparkle;
  • If you feel amazing in it.

Then you’re on the right track!


Some ladies prefer to choose a style that they would like to portray.

Others have asked me “What style am I?”.


I encourage you to find your own style with an exercise I love.


Go through some of the latest magazines and cut out pictures of garments and accessories you are drawn to and would love to wear.

On a large piece of cardboard form up a collage, piecing the pictures together in a way that is pleasing to you.


That’s it, you now have ‘your’ style.

If you keep this collage in mind, or take a snapshot of it on your phone, it will help you when you undertake your own wardrobe edit or go on your next shopping trip.   My own collage was put together 5 years ago and as you can see, the style and colour of garments and accessories are really ‘me’. I love colour and structure in my clothing, though at times I do also like  the relaxed Boho look.


Antoinettes Style Collage


Ladies the most important thing to remember is that the size on the tag doesn’t matter, it’s the fit that counts.


Next time you go shopping, challenge yourself go into a store where you’ve never shopped and flick through the racks – you’ll be surprised at what you can find.  Most women I’ve shopped with are surprised at the variety of stores where I source garments.


I believe you shouldn’t limit yourself to certain stores just because you think they cater for a certain age group.


Is there a garment in your wardrobe that you absolutely love but it’s not working for you anymore – and you just can’t bear to give it away. (It maybe something you bought on an overseas trip, it may have belonged to someone close to you).  Why not have it revamped.

This is something I do quite often with my garments, it’s simple and usually doesn’t cost much at all. The result is a garment that fits you perfectly and gives you an individual look.


Ladies remember, don’t let a number define you – whether it’s your age or the size of the garment.


Love your look and always dress with confidence!