A first-time visitor to Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Australia, I was delighted that my inaugural show was by Yousef Akbar. Entering the Carriageworks complex for the Wednesday afternoon show, fashion writer Abi and I were greeted with the sight of oh-so-stylish folks preparing to see one of the many runway shows happening throughout the day. Joining the queue, we didn’t know what to expect from Akbar.
Entering the room, we were greeted with an open latticework wooden structure in the centre, surrounded by benches and standing room behind. And then the show was ready to begin!
We were instantly transported into a strange and magical world as models (all shoeless) began entering. Sequins, feathers, and more shine than you can shake a stick at were the hallmarks of Yousef Akbar’s Resort ’18 collection.
Elements of the 90s were apparent throughout, with spaghetti-strap slip dresses over shirts. But with a twist, of course: the dresses were embellished with sequins; so were the shirts. I particularly loved the way the feathers — individually sewn onto the material — moved and fluttered with the models’ walks. It’s something best captured in video or in real life — but would be just as good on the red carpet.
My standout garment was a take on the classical motorcycle jacket, but with a twist of lengthy fabric behind. Everything Akbar does seems to be stretching limits.
The Saudi Arabia native moved to Australia to study Logistics — but quickly moved on to a degree in fashion. The recent grad (2016) debuted his designs at Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Australia in 2014, and hasn’t looked back since.
Take a squizz at his media page and you’ll see celebs can’t get enough of his clothes. High-profile clients like Chrissy Teigen, Kelly Rowland, Kelly Osbourne, Kimbra, and Jessica Mauboy.
The entire show was a delight, from the pulsating music, to the quirky set design, to the quirkier designs (I refer to the two models whose entire heads were obscured by feathery fabric). All too soon, it was over — but thankfully, he’ll be around for a long time to come.
Co-founder of The Plus Ones, Theresa can’t wait to attend more shows at MBFWA next year.
Read all our coverage on MBFWA 2017.