In just three years, the under-the-radar London-based line, founded by 37-year-old Laura Myers, has become a no-brainer for with-it celebrities, offering chic, simple, surprisingly affordable staples that blend “’90s minimalism with modern American sportswear,” as Myers tells The Post.
“The collection was created from a gap I saw in my own wardrobe,” Myers says of her infant label, a hit with everyone from Dakota Johnson and Amber Heard to Kendall Jenner and Gigi Hadid. “I was traveling a lot at the time and felt the need for pieces that I could return to again and again and wear in many different ways.”
After graduating from Brown University in 2002 with a degree in sociology, the New Zealand-born-and-raised Myers enrolled in summer courses at the Parsons School of Design before interning at major houses like Ralph Rucci in New York and Louis Vuitton in Paris.
By 2010, the designer had moved to London, where a few years later she officially launched Atea Oceanie for fall 2013. The name — a Tahitian phrase meaning “something distant and remote” — was inspired by her life as a globe-trotter who’s still connected to her distant homeland.
To that end, Myers has focused on offering seasonless dresses and separates in mostly neutral tones that can be dressed up or down. Case in point: the brand’s signature blazer, which Elizabeth Olsen has worn both casually for errand runs and more formally to film festival events, and the neoprene bodysuit — an unassuming foundational piece for some of their more statement-making ensembles.
But it’s not just West Coast glitterati sipping the Atea Oceanie tea: Instagram’s Eva Chen and Leandra Medine, of popular fashion blog Man Repeller, lead the constituency of well-heeled New Yorkers charmed by the wallet-friendly line, in which tops start at $115 and jackets, pants and dresses run mostly from $300 to $500. Chen was spotted sporting an Atea Oceanie sweater during New York Fashion Week in September, while Medine has taken to Instagram on several occasions to profess her love of their double-breasted blazer.
“Atea Oceanie somehow manages to reach a wide customer base through a variety of styles while keeping the overall brand look very streamlined,” says Bo Kim, owner of Upper West Side boutique bocnyc, one of three New York City retailers that stock the collection. (Barneys and the Line are the other two.) Kim says the brand’s sales have been strong in the time since her store picked it up for the fall 2015 season, adding that shoppers are particularly impressed by Atea Oceanie’s attention to details, such as a concealed zipper closure at the side of a current-season skirt designed to ensure a polished fit.
It’s a sentiment echoed by Kristi Mikesky, features editor at style Web site the Zoe Report.“I really appreciate the line’s innate wearability, neutral color palette and emphasis on classic silhouettes,” says the Los Angeleno, who plans on investing in pieces this season. “They’re smartly catering to the market’s growing need for versatile, timeless staples, and the attention to detail makes each piece feel special.”