It was definitely a GetYaFashOn Melbourne Fashion week. So much to say! Here are some of the best bits.
I was lucky enough to see the Student Fashion Runway this year, where Melbourne’s Fashion Institutes select top students to enter the prestigious MFW Student Of the Year. RMIT White House, Boxhill, Holmesglen, The Masters and Kangan Institute bring together the cream of the crop, it is one of the highlights of the week, an opportunity to see fresh and conceptual designs.
On arrival to the lovely Town Hall in Swanston Street, I headed to the meet and greet (Bar), which was decked out in the most wonderful blooms. The area was heaving with chattering creatives and finalists families.
The lights dimmed and the show started, the music pumping and the whole thing came together. Amongst the many collections there were some shining lights from Intricate details, weaves and threading, shaped angle cuts and rounded colourful vibrancy. I was impressed by the energy and freedom of some of the work, allowing for free expression. In my opinion, if a designer can’t be extreme at this stage in their career, them there is no point. I love Kangan’s Neil Harvey – very bright and full of life and his designs reflected this x
The winner this year Helena Dong with her elegant use of angles and smooth fabric blends creating a clear concise collection ready to roll in the mainstream. Beautiful!
In the future, given that some of these talents are recognised and mentored, there is definitely a brighter colourful and exciting fashion future here in Melbourne.
CBD Runway – Dashing to Tattersall Lane in the CBD and just off China Town I came to an urban bar surrounded by tall buildings, great graffiti and city life. It looked great, the perfect place to show new collections. The word had got out and there were people from all over; fashion professionals to students and local office workers. Everyone crowded in, drink flowing, the anticipation high. I loved it, what a fab idea to set runways throughout the city. It really makes designers more accessible and brings fashion to the consumer. Thanks Australian Fashion Council – genius!
The music was awesome – the DJ did us proud bringing the street to life. The models saunter by, oozing street attitude. A great show, some pieces stood out with texture and print but I so want to see more colour and risk.
These runways are prime space to push new ideas, better styling, great make up and hair. The shows are an expression of what is happening in the Fashion world here in Melbourne, a reflection of the home grown talent and commerce. The people need to see more exciting up beat ideas, with additional pieces challenging mainstream fashion, in my opinion. There are so many designers coming up here, take the Student Award Runway , these creatives are there, and we need to mention the lovely super talented Tess Whitfort, who has just won the GLOBAL Redress Award in Hong Kong and will be taking centerstage in the Australian and Global fashion forum. Lots to look forward to.
The Fashion Forum – A fun day had by all. An opportunity to hear from 3 stellar fashionistas; Mary Portas, Alex Perry and Edwina McCann.
It was great to get into the heads of these really down to earth experts, each with their own different take on the retail/fashion industry, the ‘Now’ and the future. Their histories, failings and successes, all great to hear. Many subjects were covered, mainly from the audience. They talked candidly about Australian Department Stores, customer service, retail management, fundamental retail common-sense, mainstream brands, future layouts of the high street shops, internet shopping and how to make a difference in the current Australian market.
Mary Portas, a straight down-the-line kinda girl. I really can relate to her honest but charming approach. She really is a peoples person, encouraging, supportive and so knowledgeable with such a great sense of humour. She sees the things that a lot of people have forgotten.
Alex Perry, a very down to earth business man, a strong family background, that resinates in his attitude and persona, hardworking, intelligent and honest. His business ‘none” business plan, the risk he took to get rolling and the fundamental need for customer service and understanding and sticking to his own brand. Impressive talent, easy to understand and approach.
Edwina McCann – although incredibly late (airline meltdown), she turned up with great enthusiasm dedicating her time to sustainability in fashion, championing Emma Watson for her recent collaboration with Vogue Australia and demonstrating Vogues finger on the pulse here. A power punch advocator as Edwina, forwarding the global need to change the way we see and think in retail and fashion is key in the future of fashion full stop. Her interesting speech was needed and hopefully her aims and ambitions will push through sustainable fashion to the High Street and the masses.
MFW is a great time to get shots of the new springs designs and get a bit of the atmosphere. So during my mad dashes around the city I captured a few items that really took my fancy. Seems to be a lot of love in the air this season!
To close this article I just have to say that over the 3 years I’ve produced GetYAFashON I have seen a significant change and momentum building in the Melbourne fashion sector. Each year more and more energy, ideas and events are organised, giving industry players , potential fashion influences, designers and business to connect and establish a foot hold. Enviably this is leading the entire Australian fashion industry to generate economic and business development. There should be more encouragement in funding down to grass roots level, from major corporations towards TAFEs and school level establishments to grow and nurture new talents. There is so much expertise and capacity here and financing is so needed. For all industry objectives, education is the key, pre and post grad. If it is already happening, let me know, I’d love to hear otherwise, so let’s hope this is something that starts to happen.
Thanks to Australian Fashion Council and Melbourne City Council for the Melbourne Fashion Week 2018.