Naarm-based label Sexiaz creates lingerie that champions sex workers, queerness and your inner icon

Naarm-based label Sexiaz creates lingerie that champions sex workers, queerness and your inner icon

Exs and Ohs makes lingerie for the millennial woman - Fashion Journal

“Sexiaz is not for the cishet-male gaze, ever.”

At an undefinable point in the last year, I realised that everywhere I went, a fluorescent bikini seemed to follow. As a firm believer in the law of attraction, I thought I’d finally manifested a bunch of lycra-clad hotties into my life (that’s how it works, right?). I figured it was either that or hallucinations brought on by an excessive amount of Love Island and MSG consumption.

Believe it or not, I was wrong. I’ve now realised it was the work of self-appointed ‘bikini dealer’ family – Arielle, Kallista and their mum Vee Richards, ringleader of the über-cool operation. Since their label Sexiaz blew up on Instagram in early 2020, they’ve been decking out Melbourne’s sexiest in made-to-order bikini sets, tops and other custom creations.

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After locating the source of the ’kinis, I needed one too. I ordered my very own ruched crop – handmade by Vee – and, like the nosy person I am, quizzed Kallista and Arielle while debating cup sizes and colour options.

So lovely to chat with you Arielle and Kallista! Your mum Veronica started Sexiaz Lingerie in 2005, designing primarily for people in the sex work industry. Can you tell us a little about how the brand has evolved over the years?

Kallista: Hi Izzy, it’s a pleasure! That’s right, our mum Vee started Sexiaz in 2005, wholesaling bikinis, lingerie and costumes – made for sex workers – to sexy stores around the country and doing all the Sexpo shows. The business remained pretty much the same until 2019, when I made us an Instagram account and began my life as a part-time bikini dealer … literally meeting up with people in the city to exchange cash for ’kinis.

Arielle: Kali would DM local icons we saw on Instagram wearing our items they’d bought at lingerie stores – not knowing they were handmade in Naarm by our mum – asking whether we could post their photos on our feed. I was offering a discount to my meagre Instagram following if they ordered a set through me, desperately trying to generate hype!

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Our goal for 2020 was to try and reach 1000 followers, which felt huge at the time. Then, about a year ago, we got really lucky when our friend Kat of Rosepure put us on to Saqua Studio, who asked us to be included in a giveaway with a bunch of iconic designers, including Karla Laidlaw, Kick in the Eye, Madonna Whore Complex and ACAB Sav. That was hot and really the catalyst for Sexiaz’s growth on Instagram.

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