Last week I had the pleasure of attending Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Australia for my second year in a row. This year instead of vlogging I decided to focus on getting some runway shots to show you a bit more about the collections that I watched. Thank you to all the brands or teams that invited me to your shows. I was not able to feature every brand I saw in this post because it became far too long, so i thought I will just show the ones which stood out to me in one way or another.
As the title of this post suggests, I'm going to cover 'What I Saw'. Next time I will show you 'What I Wore'. Make sure you're subscribed to know when my outfit post goes live:
If you represent one of the brands shown and would like high res images from your show please contact me via email: email@example.com
Cool, calm and collected, Anna Quan's latest release seems to yet again be an extension of the image we have of her as a person. No detail is ever left behind, and the garments give a feeling of striking simplicity, perfect for the modern minimalist. Her latest collection is refined, but still includes the interesting details and calls to attention you can expect from the label.
The runway show itself was also on-brand, and had the models calmly walking down the runway in their flat, woven sandals, again highlighting the quiet elegance that is Anna Quan. My favourite piece from the collection is the white shirt-style trench dress with black cuffs, which is shown in the images below.
While watching Cassie Hewitt's collection for her label Casea it was evident there was more than one culture being reflected in her designs. Strong references toward both Asian and Western cultures were being thrown, which made me research a little more into the collection and the designer behind it. Turns out of the name of the collection was 'Eurasia' and draws from Cassie's own family heritage. Her collection features vibrant prints, triple-stacked florals, frayed denim and carefully planned embellishment.
Ewol Designs was part of the MBFWA Innovators showcase, and it's straight up out of a petrie dish inside a fever dream. So much of the collection reminded me of aquatic life: sheer fabrics with iridescent colours resembling bioluminescence, the organised chaos of the embellishments somewhat akin to coral, and the mirrored and repeating patterns on the fabrics that look like cells splitting. There were no restraints on this collection, and with a showcase such as innovators it's always interesting to see what a designer truly wants to create from the heart, not just a commercial-washed collection like every mainstream brand because they think it will sell well. I'm excited to see where Ewol's designer Angela Lowe goes with her vision in the future.
If summer was closer in Australia I'd already have added Handsy to my wardrobe. These ultra-minimal swimwear pieces give me futuristic bad-babe vibes. Handsy incorporated 3D printing into some of the construction (check out those visors!), and the collection itself transcends fashion trends, with pieces that look like they could last you years purely with the statement they make.
Isabelle Quinn is able to delicately balance on the line of femininity and imperfection, with garments that are effortlessly graceful and seductive in their movement. The kind of dress you'd feel radiantly beautiful in when you throw it on with a messy bun and no makeup on a Sunday morning. You don't need heavy embellishment, jewellery, or otherwise, these pieces, in all their luxurious simplicity, are able to say enough on their own.
I always love to see men's fashion, and the Justin Cassin show was the one for me this year. Strong and moody was the overall vibe of the collection. The garments appear to be well construction and fit the wearer in a way that shows confident, but humble, sophistication.
Richard Giang's collection was also a part of the Innovators show at MBFWA. The designer's background study in architecture is somewhat evident in the construction of his garments. He delivered some looks that remind the audience of ancient warrior princesses (alligator dress and thick cuffs, anyone?), and elegantly combines strength with conventional femininity.
SARAH HOPE SCHOFIELD
Sarah Hope Schofield's designs absolutely hit all the right marks for me when it comes to editorial fashion. I ran into a stylist friend of mine after we saw her pieces and both of us were already buzzing with ideas of how we could shoot these garments. Interesting from every angle, Sarah combines unexpected garment construction with bold fabrics.
S T A N Z E E
I already love S T A N Z E E. The collection displayed at MBFWA's Next Gen show highlight's
S T A N Z E E's strength as a label that can be effortlessly chic on it's own, can be dressed up for an event, or layered to add extra dimension. The free-flowing garments could be injected straight from the runway into your wardrobe without any need for translation.
It can be safely assumed that long work hours and meticulous attention to detail went into the construction of Stephanie Henly's designs. Her collection showcased at MBFWA's Next Gen presentation gave me the feeling of ancient regality colliding with modern romanticism. Stephanie sent an assemblage of powerful women down the runway in her collection steeped in rich red and bold neutrals. The free-flowing embellishments of skirt and dress details only added to the enchantment created by the movement of her garments.
Victoria Bliss' designs are an exploration of form, which is evident in the captivating cuts of her garments. See the first images below, the shirt on the left with the rectangular panel cut-out, and the jacket on the right with the high-back and elbow slits, which open when the elbows are bent. The label's staple seems to be a minimal and refined colour palette paired with impeccable tailoring.
VMajor took the term runway quite literally as they sent their models bolting down the centre-strip in their Nike Flyknits (complete without laces). The show was fast-paced (less than 6 minutes) but flowed well. The latest collection from VMajor relies heavily on neutrals and soft blue hues, leaning more upon the texture of fabrics for contrast in the collection, rather than colour changes.
Zhivago has never been for the faint of heart, and the latest collection reaffirms the brand's distinguished look of cinched waists, strong shoulders and unshakeable attitude. As someone who has worn their designs on a few occasions now, words cannot do justice to how confident you feel when you wear one of their pieces, they are meticulously crafted, and always flattering. Zhivago's MBFWA show 'Miami Nights' displayed the brand's ventures into slightly new territories, adding previously unused materials, new cuts (puffy sleeves) and embellishments (so many sequins) to their designs. Zhivago is provocative, without being overbearing.
Every detail was considered for this show: chain-sunglasses, and Zhivago branded ear cuffs (I will take one please). On top of this, anyone who paid attention noticed the striking lip colour on the models, closely followed by the fact that their shoes, nail polish, and even toe nails matched. Just when you thought a runway collection couldn't get any better, instead of a single-file walk to end the show, there was a 90s supermodel throw back with all the models walking toward the end of the runway at once, giving a cheerleader effect to the already powerful group of femme fatales. Without a doubt this was my stand-out show from MBFWA.