After graduating from fashion school in East Sydney and presenting her collection at Australia Fashion Week in 2006, designer Micaela Ezra packed her bags for New York. “I came with my portfolio and a bag of clothes and literally knocked on doors,” she says. She landed an interview at Cynthia Steffe and was hired on the spot as part of the design team. After working her way through the ranks, she departed last spring to become the sole designer of Sine, Laila, and Parameter, three brands owned by Maytal Fashions, Inc. In particular, her debut Sine collection has attracted new interest to the little-known spinoff label, which was founded in 2007. The spring line has a feminine, bohemian vibe, offering silk dresses in peachy corals and muted beach tones; ruffled tops; cuffed shorts; and belted jersey dresses. The prints are a main focus in the design process, influenced by painters like Klimt, Monet, and Degas. “I’m inspired by the look of the brushstroke and that sort of rawness,” Ezra says, “When you see those masterpieces, there’s an instinctual response to color.”
Though it’s still early in her tenure, the sunny-tempered designer has a clear vision for the label: flattering, versatile styles that inspire confidence in the wearer. “Women want to feel something specific when they put on a piece of clothing,” she says. “Every woman has those moments of fantasy or escape — like music or art. Fashion allows you to play a certain role.” Sine is available at Anthropologie, Bloomingdale’s, and Saks Fifth Avenue, as well as the brand’s upcoming e-commerce site, starting February 10. Click ahead to check out looks from the spring line.