The closing show for Fashfest 2016 was always going to be a big deal, but between last minute changes to the set list, my struggling not to wail like a banshee when Mondecreen took the stage, and more surprises than I was prepared for – it truly was an immersive experience.
Singularity opened strongly with a few new designers to the Fashfest alumni, before diving into collection after collection of impeccably strong garments. Singularity asked us to explore the here and now of fashion with big ideas. Raw, bold and one-of-a-kind, this show was for those who want a singular experience – and a unique ending.
I need to take a moment to fan-boy out over the amazing Mondecreen, who rocked the evening with three performances along with Soul Sisters and Josh Beck. I’ve been a fan since Mondecreen played Fashfest last year, and I was thrilled to see them return to the runway this year.
Kicking off the last night of Fashfest 2016, the first show was a tour-de-force of designers who are established and comfortable in their style. This collection was polished – every little detail had been thought through carefully by the designers, and the presentation showcased their individual talents perfectly.
But what was Spectra all about? Well, Spectra is a band of colour, or a visual display. This Fashfest show invited the audience to explore where they sit on the fashion spectrum. It was a show for people looking to make a statement and express themselves in true colour, and showing the tools necessary to craft your own fashion identity.
The theme of the show was Limina – a celebration of the moments that change our lives. The audience was invited to explore how we cross thresholds with unique garments. This show was a chance for us all to reflect on those special moments in life, and how what we wear contributes to and builds upon those moments.
I was very impressed by the film featurette by Sebastian Chan. It was bold, relevant and most of all fun. It was like a sparkly Hunger Games of fashion!
Since it very first graced our fair city with its presence, Fashfest has grown in leaps and bounds. This year the event has partnered with the Canberra Centre, the destination for style in the capital. I will have another post in coming weeks about why I think that this is such a brilliant and important partnership, but for tonight I want to focus on the event itself.
Praxis asked us to engage with and explore fashion in an accessible way. It was a demonstration of how the fashion we wear intertwines with what we do, and how it helps us to take on the day. This was a show for those who use fashion as a way to reflect their life.
Furore is an interesting choice of theme for the second show of Fashfest 2016, and while I must admit when I first read it I was a little uneasy, bringing to mind images of scandal, the show itself was a very well-planned and brilliantly executed set of collections and creative works.
Furore tested the boundaries of our taste, challenging us to admire the beauty of this dark thunderstorm of film, music and fashion. In the sixty-minute set we were challenged to test our preconceptions and to explore the edge and spectacle of what fashion can be.
This show was for those who love the unconventional, and the unexpected, and it delivered that and so much more.
While the weather outside was abysmal, Canberrans turned up in droves to support the opening night of Fashfest 2016.
Condensed to just three nights ths year, and with two shows a night, Fashfest 2016 kicked off with Reverie: A visual delight with images to relish. Reverie offered audiences an opportunity to explore fashion for its beauty, its brilliance, and its sensation. The show was for those who want to get lost in a dream, a fantastic reverie.
Overall it was an impressive collection of new and returning Fashfest designers which really set the tone for this year’s events.
I have to make a special mention of musician Kirklandd who performed alongside the talented Ave Nocturna and Mitcharelli. Kirklandd really surprised me by getting me to enjoy Australian Hiphop, and it is fairly obvious why he is described as an exciting member of Aussie hip-hop’s new generation.
Braddon Tailors has been a leading light on Canberra’s menswear scene, since they stole the show with their first collection at Fashfest 2014. Since that show, the homegrown Braddon Tailors label has developed a cult following within the region and has continued to grow; with permanent locations now established in other major centres in Australia including Sydney and Adelaide.
In exciting news Jono McFeat and Pip Morgan, two of the gents behind Braddon Tailors, have now launched their new accessories label Casa Pavone. Casa Pavone specialises in creating ties, bow ties and other menswear accessories that are beautiful, timeless, versatile and of exceptional quality.