Exclusive: Nicole Trunfio Takes This $100 Dress From Simple to Statement

There are so many cult-movies where the pinnacle moment is a makeover scene—where someone or something is transformed from basic to breathtaking. This concept excites us so much that we decided to bring this story to life—and take a simple, black dress that costs less than $100, give it a makeover, and take it to the next level. And no one does next level like Australian supermodel Nicole Trunfio.

So on her recent visit to Sydney we met up for a quick styling session and tried this Sportsgirl slip dress five different ways, changing only the accessories—the addition of a neck tie, different jewellery or rotating a sling for a clutch is all it takes to get the most out of one dress for party season.

Keep scrolling to see all the different looks and read our exclusive style interview with the Australian supermodel.


Dave Wheeler

Who What Wear Australia: Where do you get your style inspiration from?

Nicole Trunfio: I’m inspired by the moment, I like to feel confident and comfortable in whatever I am wearing. I like to explore with my style and constantly re-invent myself. In saying that, I always seem to fall back to my love for the '70s. I love Bianca Jagger, Lauren Hutton, and Brigitte Bardot. 

WWW: Who do you look up to the most in the fashion industry?

NT: Tom Ford, I love how he can work on so many different platforms and I love his strong sense of brand. The Tom Ford name exudes luxury and quality, from his fragrances to his films. The way he manages to keep out of the media unless he is specifically promoting something is beyond me. 

Credits: Sportsgirl Easy Slip Dress ($100), Daniel Avakian Silk Neck Tie ($85), Trunfio Universe Yellow Gold Universe Bracelet ($10, 340) [on top], Cartier LOVE Bracelet ($8800), Saint Laurent Monogramme Clutch Croc Embossed ($1695).


Dave Wheeler

WWW: Is your jewellery label, Trunfio Universe, exactly what you’d wear or are you designing for your audience?

NT: It's both. I wanted to create from my imagination and I wanted to create new jewellery using different techniques and stand apart from other brands—something for the indulgent. I wanted to create something that is identifiable and of the highest quality.

WWW: What’s your fool-proof way to dress up a little black dress?

NT: A black hat, a black choker and boots. Keep it cool and tasteful. Think YSL. A nice free-flowing long jacket always looks great over the shoulder, and overdo the jewellery—a women who can style jewellery well on top of her outfit exudes elegance and taste.

Credits: Sportsgirl Easy Slip Dress ($100), Trunfio Universe Yellow Gold Universe Bracelet ($10,340) [on top], Cartier LOVE Bracelet ($8800), Chloé Darcey Brass Ring ($395), Chloé Darcey Brass Ring ($365), Chloé Darcey Round Ring ($365).


Dave Wheeler

WWW: What’s your go-to outfit during party season?

NT: Something vintage or of-the-moment. I like to bounce between the two. If you can't tell if it’s new or old, it’s a winner. I like to feel effortless, an outfit always effects my mood and the kind of night I have.

WWW: What’s your favourite piece in your collection and how do you style it?

NT: I wear my Universe Bracelet 24/7 (editor’s note: this is true! We’ve caught up with Nicole twice recently and both times she was adorned in her label), I love this piece of jewellery. It is so meaningful and sentimental and extremely powerful. I see it outliving me and created it in the hopes to inspire women all over the world. I really love the wrap rings too, the Shooting Star Wrap ring in Pave and White Gold and also, the Universe Wrap Ring.

Credits: Sportsgirl Easy Slip Dress ($100), Holly Ryan Gold Pop & Drop Necklace ($620), Trunfio Universe Yellow Gold Universe Bracelet ($10,340) [on top], Cartier LOVE Bracelet ($8800).


Dave Wheeler

WWW: Do you prefer gold or silver? Or do you like to mix metals?

NT: Gold, it is a much better investment and stronger metal. If feels better, maybe it’s because it’s heavier or more valuable or its energetic frequency, but I think gold is really beautiful. 

WWW: What are your handbag essentials for a night out?

Beauty balm. I like to keep my lips moisturised at all times and use it on my brows and cheeks, collar bone and shoulders to freshen up my look and glow all night long. 

Credits: Sportsgirl Easy Slip Dress ($100), Holly Ryan Gold Minimalist Hoop Earrings ($300), Trunfio Universe Yellow Gold Universe Bracelet ($10,340) [on top], Cartier LOVE Bracelet ($8800), Chloé Drew Mini ($1810).


Dave Wheeler

WWW: You’ve got 10 minutes to get from bed to door—what do you do to get ready?

NT: A black Dolce & Gabbana-esque day dress, very Italian with lots of fabric. Then I’d belt it, add black lace-up gladiator sandals, hoop earrings, a low bun and an amazing handbag—maybe a Valentino cross-body bag. I won't have time for makeup, so a nice big pair of sunglasses. 

WWW: How has your ‘getting ready’ routine changed since becoming a mum?

NT: I have become of the octopus descent (laughs). It’s always fun. My son has just started crawling and he is the most curious being. I have to keep my eye on him. 

Credits: Sportsgirl Easy Slip Dress ($100), Reliquia Spiral Hoop Earrings ($120), Trunfio Universe Yellow Gold Universe Bracelet ($10,340) [on top], Cartier LOVE Bracelet ($8800), Daniel Avakian Silk Neck Tie ($85).

Shop THE dress you need for summer!

Photographer: Dave Wheeler

Stylist: Amanda Stavropoulos

Hair and makeup: Fern Madden

Location: The Fashion Institute

How would you style a black slip dress? Let us know in the comments below!

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