‘More to Australia than Kangaroos and Koalas’ is an attempt to showcase the diverse and exciting continent country that is Australia. Today we strut into the fashion world where Australia is making a global impact.
The Australian contribution to the world of fashion has come a long way from safari suits and long socks, as recounted by historian Margot Riley. Today Australian designers like Wayne Cooper, Collette Dinnigan, Akira Isogawa, Lisa Ho, Martin Grant, Carla Zampatti, Easton Pearson, Michelle Jank and Nicola Finetti are global sensations. A fashion design course from the prestigious RMIT university in Melbourne is often on the to-do list of aspiring designers in Australia.
Australian Fashion Weeks are an emerging force to reckon with, as the fickle world of global fashion is fast losing its fascination with the streets of Milan, London, New York, and Paris. This is entirely due to the exhausting nature of the endless runway shows that tend to showcase the same famous brands, who in a bid to overcome astronomical expenses focus on selling more lipsticks, sunglasses, and perfumes.
Contrast that with Australian Fashion weeks that showcases emerging young designers with unrestrained creativity and contagious passion and you get a paradigm shift that puts Australia on the hot spot for global fashion.
Commercial viability is threatening many fashion houses into insolvency due to the exorbitant overheads of shop rents, investments in production and materials, volatile retailer purchasing etc.
In Australia however, the digital world is offering Australian designers a cheap and successful alternative to global consumers and fashion advocates, AKA fashion bloggers, and the need to be featured in the Paris runway is passé.
Fashion has often been subdued and even nudged into metamorphosis by its clients; corsets and ball gowns have been forced into oblivion by the everyday individual that seeks comfortable and wearable with stylish imbued in every fiber and cut.
Melbourne street style offers exactly that, fusion fashion that is relaxed, stylish and wearable. Cities such as Berlin, Seoul, Amsterdam, Shanghai, Istanbul, Melbourne and Sydney are now being touted as crucibles of fashion innovation.
The Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week is reaching iconic status with the event turning into a much-awaited entry in every socialite’s diary. The media and fashion world are abuzz for weeks with a step-by-step recount of the runway and the emerging fashion trends.
The battle to be Australia’s fashion capital has been hotly contested by Sydney and Melbourne. A Global Language Monitor survey positions Sydney 18 places ahead of Melbourne but only time will tell if this position holds as retail giants H&M and Uniqlo opted for Melbourne to open their stores.