Melbourne style on parade …

It is hard to believe that another year has come to pass with the VAMFF here in marvellous Melbourne, and no matter how prepared I am it nevertheless seems to creep up on me almost unexpectedly. But each year it also promises a new season of sartorial styles to contemplate as the weather cools and this year it did not disappoint.

My VAMFF adventure began with an Australian premiere screening of Christian Dior: The Refinement of a Lost Paradise (L’élégance du Paradis Perdu) at ACMI As a nod to the House of Dior’s seventieth anniversary, and knowing that the National Gallery of Victoria NGV will be hosting a premiere exhibition later this year to commemorate this milestone, the documentary was a lovely prelude focusing on Christian’s early upbringing in Granville. An insightful piece, it showcased how his family and childhood home influenced and forged his path as a designer. This documentary is must see viewing for any one that has an appreciation for the iconic design house that single-handedly revolutionised fashion through the New Look, and managed to endure successfully as a brand long after its founders sudden passing sixty years ago. It was a lovely tribute to say the least, and an unexpected but welcomed gesture bestowed upon patrons after the screening by our hosts, ACMI,  included a few samples of Dior perfumes to enjoy. A nice touch indeed.

The next stop on my VAMFF to do list was the Royal Exhibition Building to attend the premiere David Jones Gala runway in order to get a firsthand account of what to expect this season. I had never attended this runway event previously and unlike the other runway shows this was a little longer in terms of duration. Featuring the largest designer lineup of the festival, the showcase was rich in content, perfectly setting the tone of what we can expect to find in stores this Autumn-Winter for consumption.

Highlighting the talents of both local and international designers such as Thurley, Camilla and Marc, Alexander McQueen, Valentino and Scanlan and Theodore to name but a few, the show itself was a pulsating, visual treat set to the live performance by Paul Mac. Personal highlights and looks to steal for me this season included the gorgeous lace ensembles from Lover , Thurley, Alice McCall, Manning Cartell and Nicholas. I was also partial to the beautiful winter inspired florals from Camilla and Marc and the vibrancy of the Russian Doll inspired garments from Carla Zampatti. And to cap off the evening a new issue of Jones (David Jones in house magazine) was duly handed out to patrons for further inspection that would no doubt assist in sales.

Next on my must see was e-tailer Next UK’s Australian launch runway, featuring the lovely Rebecca Judd and Samantha Harris. Next Australia’s lineup was fun, affordable, on trend but most importantly totally wearable. Featuring mens, womens and kids wear my favourite featured items again would have to be their lace offerings which I found to be easy to wear for everyday and would no doubt be kinder on my purse.

In a similar vein as Next Australia, Myer’s in store runway was also good value. The second floor walk ways of the Bourke Street store were converted into a runway, giving all patrons both seated for the event and those who were actually shopping, a delightful peek into what is currently in store for purchase. Joining Myer ambassadors Jennifer Hawkins and Kris Smith on this merry go round parade was also Tim Robards, he of the Bachelor Australia fame which delighted many of the patrons in the crowd. And to add to the fun we were also gifted with a deluxe sample bag of goodies to road test which is always a bonus.

Concluding the spectacle of all the runway events I, along with my sister who was my partner in crime for the duration of the festival, also spent some time taking a leisurely wander about the VAMFF Plaza enjoying all the food and live entertainment on offer, as well as popping into the Priceline beauty salon where we were both treated to a wonderful makeup and hair styling session by the generous ladies at Priceline. A perfectly lovely way to end this adventure, until next time. ​

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There’s something about the VAMFF

It never ceases to amaze me. In all the years I’ve been attending the Melbourne Fashion Festival the atmosphere surrounding it is always one of excitement, anticipation and awe. You just cannot help but get caught up in the hoopla that is fashion week. Whether you’re attending runway shows, cultural events, or just stopping by the L’Oreal Powder Room for a beauty consultation and a gift bag, there really is something for everyone. And that is what I love about this festival.

I was fortunate enough to attend the Runway Six show last Friday night and I must say it was a delightful half hour of elegant sophistication presented by the fashion bible itself, Harper’s Bazaar Australia.

Perfectly polished models floated along the catwalk showcasing the talents of Sass & Bide, Yeojin Bae, AG Arthur Galan, Lui Hon, Ellery, Alex Perry and Carla Zampatti. With garment after garment floating along, the collections presented were a succinct edit of each designer’s interpretation of AW14. Stand-outs for me would have to be Yeojin Bae’s razor sharp tailored pieces and Carla Zampatti’s ladylike frocks that would flatter any body. Pretty pieces all round that reflected the elegant flair which we have come to expect from each designers respective labels. A definite highlight in the runway series…

Carla Zampatti - courtesy of VAMFF website
Carla Zampatti – courtesy of VAMFF website
Lui Hon - courtesy of VAMFF website
Lui Hon – courtesy of VAMFF website
Yeojin Bae - courtesy of VAMFF website
Yeojin Bae – courtesy of VAMFF website

Memoirs of a Fictionatrix

The stage was set. A gilded birdcage stood front and centre. The observers wore jeweled eye masks as a prelude to enhance their senses and as the leading lady took to the stage the masks came off. Welcome to the theatrically inspired world of Mimco’s Memoirs of a Fictionatrix.Image

Inspired by the old world glamour of vintage Hollywood, Mimco’s Fictionatrix runway event did not disappoint. Full of vibrant colour and pulsating energy it was the perfect beginning to my week here at the VAMFF.

As an avid fan and owner of many a Mimco accessory this show was a visual treat to say the least. Every prop presented, whether it was the shoes, scarves, hats, handbags or even the luxe jewels, all were so enticing I had to stop myself from saying out loud ‘I want that and that and that and that!’ as each Fictionatrix strutted the stage adorned with the goods. It was wonderful.

But for now all I can do is step back and process this bit of theatre, give thanks for the treat bag bestowed upon us and consider my next purchase. Because I know that my next expedition at Mimco while it won’t break the bank, it is definitely going to be an expensive but rewarding one that I’m sure will enhance the wardrobe of this Fictionatrix!

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Prelude to Autumn

I love March. It truly sets the tone for wonderful things to come, not just because it’s my birthday month, it also marks the beginning of my favourite season which heralds cooler nights, comfort food and layers…lots and lots of lovely layers. With that in mind I find it’s also the perfect time to reassess, reassess my wardrobe that is. So to get that process in motion I found myself fortunate to attend the Myer AW14 runway preview to get some autumnal inspiration.

Headlined by the lovely Jennifer Hawkins, the preview was the perfect prelude for what’s to come in store this season. Leather, lace, winter floral’s, winter whites, the perennial black, pops of eye catching colour, garments to take you from day to night, they were all there and it was quite the spectacle. The beauty of department store previews I’ve always found is that everything presented is  attainable.  So it was a treat to be a part of an event that hosts a wide variety of both local and international talent that are quite luxe but more importantly wearable…and it didn’t hurt that the atmosphere was so welcoming too. I enjoyed every minute of it.

Jennifer Hawkins Myer AW14
Jennifer Hawkins Myer AW14
Kris Smith, Jennifer Hawkins, Kate Peck Myer AW14
Kris Smith, Jennifer Hawkins, Kate Peck Myer AW14
Myer AW14
Myer AW14

After the show I was left to ponder wide-eyed, making many a mental note as to what I’d love to invest in for the season…a beautiful pink coat from Jayson Brunsdon, a delicate black lace dress from Fleur Wood, sculpted and frilled ladylike separates from Maticevski, even a pair of cute and playful pyjamas from Peter Alexander. The list was endless, but it does give me something to work towards…one piece at a time, and as my hip pocket can afford!