Friday night at Virgin Australia’s Melbourne Fashion Festival (VAMFF), and our first runway for the night is the National Graduate Showcase presented by Target, supported by Fashion Journal.
It’s a hand-picked selection of Australia’s top emerging design talent from across all universities and fashion design institutions. Held in the Royal Exhibition Building, we’re about to see some of Australia’s leading graduates shine. This is a show full of surprises.
First up, we have Lisa Liu’s (Whitehouse Institute of Design) collection of block-coloured nylons and colourful ropes. Bubble-like bottoms and pear shape silhouettes to the ground, the models look like they have sky dived and delved intricately into the parachutes as garments. With seatbelts and pulley ropes, we’re seeing oversized balloon skirts and thick knits to create contrast.
Lucie Martyr (University of Technology Sydney) brings in some feminine and striking pieces. Accentuated sleeves, goddess like fabric mixed in with floral prints — it’s like a powerful woman from the future just entered Planet Earth.
Lucy Dickinson’s (RMIT) art direction and choice of music made members in the audience bounce and dance in their seat. A white, black, and red collection focusing on typography and graphics as print, the models were walking to the beats as graffiti art.
Madeline Jost (RMIT) was inspired by the home, testing the boundaries of wearer and object. The models look like vintage furniture and curtains from an interior castle had come to life.
Rachel O’Brien (University of Technology Sydney) has the audience stunned at the sheer fabrics; we’re seeing skin-covered dynamics with intricate sequined details and metallic finishes.
Tess Tavener Hanks (University of Technology Sydney) introduces hip hop underground music in a super futuristic world. Using electric blues and patent fabrics constructed as geometric panels, this collection reminds us of a scene off The Fifth Element.
Xiangqiao Sheng (RMIT) tops off the National Graduate Showcase with a fairy tale picture of mermaids and fearless feminie creatures. Using abstract textures of tinsel and mirrors — all the shiny sorts as this designer’s aesthetic was all about making magic.
That was fun. Now, off for a beverage at the Virgin Australia Runway Bar at The Plaza while we wait for the next runway show!
Follow Sheena Reyes’s journey on Instagram: @sheenareyes.
VAMFF runs until 18 March 2018 – make sure to check out all of the upcoming events at vamff.com.au. Check out VAMFF’s Shop The Runway for all runway styles.
View The Plus Ones’ coverage of VAMFF 2018.