Our favorite Aussie surfer/blogger Mandy Shadforth, a.k.a. Oracle Fox, was recently snatched up for a collaboration with Billabong and the results are finally here. Just like we predicted, the fringed cardigans, lace-trimmed short shorts and black and white print bikinis are a study in the free-wheeling lifestyle Mandy knows so well. We chatted with Mandy in this exclusive interview about learning to surf and her favorite pieces from the new collection:
How did you discover surfing?
Where I live [Queensland, Australia] has a really strong surf culture and my dad was a surfer, so it was inevitable that I would learn. In high school we were introduced to surfing as a school subject!
What boards do you surf with?
I have a few favorite boards, mostly I surf a Darren Handley D2 Rocker. It's a rad little short board made for short shore breaks, which is perfect for where I live. When the surf gets bigger I ride a HIC Gun.
How do you like to spend your beach days?
I like to wake up early and get in the water while the conditions are still clean. Then I'll surf for a few hours, come in grab a healthy breaky, and if the conditions are still good I'll head back out. Otherwise, I'll chill on the beach with my friends.
If you had your way, how many hours a day would you surf for?
All day, especially if the surf was going off.
So you clearly have a strong connection to the water…
Australia is known for its awesome beaches and beautiful surf spots, and I'm super lucky to live in one of those, so where I come from a lot of people are into water sports. I know that if I can get in the salt water in the morning, for the rest of the day I'll be in a really good mood.
We love that nature can affect you so strongly.
I think that my love of nature is something that has been ingrained in me and comes out quite subconsciously in my artwork, my photos and my blog.
Does your surf lifestyle sneak into your art sometimes?
It’s more the approach I have in the way I do things. When you spend a lot of time in the ocean and surrounded by Mother Nature, it puts your life into perspective and the things that really mean something to you are reflected in everything that you do.
What are some of your artistic inspirations?
I’m inspired by the places I travel to for work, the surf trips with my girlfriends. I'm inspired by colors and textures in nature, by music and old movies. My favorite form of inspiration comes from looking at old pictures in books and magazines.
You had early success as a blogger– what do you attribute that to?
Staying true to my style and portraying who I am in a way that expresses my outlook on life.
Oracle Fox Favorites:
Golden Prophecy Tank
“This is one of my favorite pieces from the collection– it’s inspired by my own paintings, my fascination with mythology, nature and lucky charms.”
Loving You Open Knit Fringe Cardigan
“I’m a fan of the fringe! This jacket is a combination of the best features from all my favorite jackets in my wardrobe meshed into one.”
The Mandy Bikini
“Imagine my surprise when the Billabong girls named my bikini design after me (blush!). It’s a beautiful black and white print inspired by light and dark, good and bad. It’ll be glued to my body all summer!”
Get a daily dose of inspiration from Down Under at OracleFox.blogspot.com.
The just-launched collection is available online now. This one will go quickly– so step on it!