E Nolan’s debut ready-to-wear collection is a little bit Ned Flanders and a little bit Katharine Hepburn

Photography by Claudia Smith
Words by Faye Couros

For the style-savvy Ned Flanders in your life.

Melbourne-based label E Nolan’s modern vision for womenswear is expanding to include a ready-to-wear line. The capsule collection of separates embodies the label’s unique tongue-in-cheek approach to dressing. 

For a brand with a blowfly as its Instagram icon and posts that range from McDonald’s chips to The Simpsons, it’s not surprising to hear the off-the-beaten-track style icons that inspired this collection.

“Oh, I’ve described it as Ned Flanders meets Katharine Hepburn, it’s totally nuts,” says Emily Nolan, the label’s designer and founder.

The collection includes Aussie cricket-inspired knits, pleated skirts, Australian merino wool turtle knits, cigarette pants, classic white shirts and oversized bowling shirts, and the colour palette is packed with punchy flamingo pinks, tangerines, caramels and neon oranges.

Cartoon references aside, the collection is predominantly influenced by the array of women who visit Emily at her shipping container, a place where she carries out her made-to-measure suit tailoring service.

“The ready-to-wear collection is the product of heaps and heaps of women in front of me saying, ‘This is what my wardrobe is missing, and these are the colours I want to do it in’,” says Emily.

Corporate fashion usually leans towards traditional colours and isn’t particularly synonymous with fun, but E Nolan’s ready-to-wear line is giving new life to the classic suit by incorporating fun t-shirts and knitwear to style them with, because in 2020 we’re wearing suits on the weekend, too.

“We decided to do ready-to-wear because it’s so versatile [and] a lot of my clients are corporate, so they have a navy, or blue, or charcoal suit, so classic,” says Emily. “Whether or not they wear it on the weekend or to a black-tie or a cocktail party, they can be putting it with a fun shirt, a fun T-shirt or a fun bit of knitwear.”

The collection is an extension of E Nolan’s classic aesthetic, which is a layered and relaxed approach to contemporary separates, with a focus on fit, fabrics and longevity. 

But most importantly, Emily wanted to create clothing that’s comfortable, so that you can feel as cosy in your workwear as you do in the hoodie you stole from your boyfriend.

“If I can somehow grasp that emotional connection people have to their off-duty clothes and somehow incorporate that into their working wardrobe, whether it’s through the softness of feel or emotional connection… if they have an aspect of that, [then] I really believe it’s the same way my grandma use to make clothing for me, and it felt safe.”

E Nolan’s ready-to-wear collection is now available to purchase online. 


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