Rosemount Australia Fashion Week is no more, and with a change of sponsors come multiple changes to the lineup. Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia has released the preliminary schedule for the Spring/Summer 2012/13 collections, and who’s missing is almost as manifest as who’s present. Lover’s Susien Chong and Nic Briand won’t be there, red carpet maestro Alex Perry has been lost to L’Oreal Melbourne Fashion Festival along with cult New Zealand label Stolen Girlfriends Club, and fellow Kiwi Kate Sylvester is also conspicuously absent.
But the schedule as a whole is far from disappointing. Zimmermann, Lisa Ho, Ellery, Kirrily Johnston, and Bec and Bridge are all in so far. Romance Was Born will be staging one of its famously exuberant shows, and elusive streetwear label Ksubi one of their famously sporadic ones. There are also exciting rookies aplently. Here are four of the most promising local designers who will be showing alongside the big names:
Watson x Watson
Sisters Somer and Liberty Watson’s label is only one year old, but is already stocked in over 50 boutiques. Relaxed and refined, but still with a hefty dose of fur and leather, it’s the kind of clothing you’d put on to lie around at home in before realising you looked far too good not to let anyone see you.
Flowers for a Vagabond
Toby Maclean’s new label made its runway debut at Rosemount Australia Fashion Week 2010, and it’s definitely one to watch. You literally have trouble taking your eyes of his translucent silks and feather-light jersey basics when they move, and his more sculptural pieces are equally fascinating. Maclean grew up on a remote Merino stud in the Australian outback, which might account for his wild imagination.
The 23-year-old has yet to make a standalone outing on the runway, but he’s already had two moments of possibly even more consequence. In 2009 Rihanna ordered multiple garments from the designer’s TAFE collection after spotting a Ward-Fear skirt on a stylist’s assistant, and the following year Miuccia Prada almost took out an eye on one of his spiked Perspex collars while admiring it on fashion blogger Bryan Boy. Clearly Ward-Fear clothing isn’t for the faint of heart, whether it’s sci-fi evening wear or fetish-inspired details.
An Ode to No One
Adi Setiadi cut his teeth working for Akira and Nicola Finetti, but he’s obviously loving the freedom that comes with designing for his own label. An Ode to No One’s AW 2011 presentation stunned invitees with a 3D digital print that is one of the first of its kind in the world, giving a stunning futuristic aesthetic to his signature party-friendly mini dresses and a range of bold leggings. Setiadi’s Spring collection should be equally mesmerising to look at, with or without 3D glasses.