Second Town Hall Meeting Notes | National Clothing Product Stewardship Scheme

On the 20th July the AFC and consortium members held the second industry webinar to continue the conversation and update the industry on the progress of the National Clothing Product Stewardship Scheme. Over 250 attendees from all facets of the fashion and textile eco-system tuned in to hear insights from the consortium around the groundbreaking reports that mark the closing of phase one of the Scheme.

Thank you to everyone who attended. It was fantastic to see such a high level of engagement and sharing through the chat box and Q&A sessions.

The Global Scan Report provides learnings for Scheme design based on global best practices and a close, contextual understanding of Australia’s capacity for change, led by the Queensland University of Technology team: Alice Payne, with Paige Street, Annastasia Bousgas and Caitlan Hopper.

The report is in three parts:
1. A survey of the current state of the Australian clothing industry and product stewardship;
2. An analysis of clothing waste policies and initiatives in 12 countries; and
3. An overview of technologies and processes that can support a circular economy for clothing.

Led by the Sustainable Resource Use team, Peter Allan and Jill Allan, the data report aims to:

Understand the structure of the sector to ensure the scheme elements are efficient and fair to all;
To provide a comprehensive understanding of the flow of clothing in order to frame the scheme actions for maximised effectiveness; and
To act as an important baseline by which we can measure changes and successes.

Thank you to our webinar speakers Alice Payne of QUT, Peter Allan of Sustainable Resource Use, Claire Kneller of WRAP, our MC Omer Soker of Charitable Recycling Australia and our AFC Project Director, Danielle Kent.

In case you missed it, you can watch the recording below, download the presentation and the Q&A’s.



Throughout the session we tried to respond to as many of your questions in the time we had. For those questions we missed, click here.

If you would like to revisit the slides that were presented during the webinar click here.

We would like to give a special thanks to Liandra Gaykamangu for her engaging and out-of-the-box Acknowledgement of Country;


CEO, Australian Fashion Council

Project Director, National Clothing Stewardship Scheme, Australian Fashion Council

CEO, Charitable Recycling Australia

Associate Professor - Fashion, School Of Design, QUT.

CEO, Sustainable Resource Use

Head Of Asia Pacific, WRAP

National Retail Association (NRA), Australian Retailers Association (ARA), Waste Management and Resource Recovery Association (WMRR) and Australian Council of Recycling (ACOR), and dozens of other stakeholders across the entire clothing value chain including brands, retailers, industry, academia and federal, state and local governments.

Government Crackdown on Greenwashing | Olvera Advisors

Authored by Olvera Advisors

The growing consumer interest in sustainable brands has driven more and more fashion brands to promote their sustainability initiatives and efforts. But now with false claims and greenwashing becoming more prevalent, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is taking a tougher approach to false claims. Why is the ACCC targeting greenwashing and how does it impact your brand?

Although falling slightly behind from the rest of the world in its release of the 2022/23 compliance and enforcement report, the ACCC has announced that greenwashing is becoming its new priority. This includes targeting greenwasher's in "problem sectors" proactively, rather than waiting for complaints to come through. These steps have been taken by the ACCC to protect consumers as many businesses seek to take advantage of the public’s growing environmental consciousness. The ACCC is also concerned greenwashing can result in unfair competition, as those businesses incurring the costs of genuine environmentally friendly actions will be competing against businesses which are making misleading green claims without incurring the same costs.

Broad unqualified claims may give rise to issues under the Australian Consumer Law (ACL), located in schedule 2 of the Competition and Consumer Act 2010 (Cth), if they are ambiguous or cannot be substantiated. Greenwashing has negative legal implications for engaging in misleading and deceptive conduct, and may also expose your brand to reputational risks.

H&M, Zara and Uniqlo are among the international companies caught greenwashing over the years. These fashion brands have contributed to the massive amounts of textile waste caused by the clothing industry. According to the fashion non-for-profit ReMake, 80% of textiles globally are incinerated or landfill-bound, just 20% being reused or recycled. Of the textiles being recycled, according to the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, less than 1% are actually being recycled back into fibres to be reused in garments.

To help navigate between substantiated claims and greenwashing, the Australian Securities and Investment Commision (ASIC) provides a set of questions to consider. These questions will assist you to avoid greenwashing when offering or promoting the environmental credentials and/or impact of your products:

1. Is your product true to the label?

ASIC warns against using specific sustainability-related terminology or absolute terms in a product’s label, which would be misleading. For example, this may include label terms like ‘green’, ‘sustainable’ or ‘eco-friendly’, especially if used without explanation. Whilst these terms are likely to be seen as suggesting that a product, brand, or business as a whole has a positive environmental impact or at least no adverse impact, these claims are invalid unless a business/brand has the ability to prove it. In situations where the company is unable to prove its claims, it risks falling short of its legal obligations.

2. Have you used vague terminology in your communication?

Brands must be cautious when using technical terminology related to sustainability when communicating about their brand or product offerings. Many technical ESG terms do not have a ‘standard definition’, therefore it is crucial that brands explain the terminology used in their communication and promotional material.

3. Are your headline claims potentially misleading?

Considering that headline claims are a powerful tool for capturing your audience’s attention, it is important to avoid making misleading headline claims about sustainability-related products or actions. ASIC has noted that exceptions or qualifications such as fine print and terms and conditions to headline claims may well be insufficient to remedy misleading representations.

4. Have you explained how you use metrics related to sustainability?

It is advised by ASIC that several additional disclosures are made in relation to sustainability-related metrics. For example, this may include obtaining an ESG score from credible sources. In essence, an ESG score is a score calculated based on measuring a company’s relative ESG performance, commitment, and effectiveness across main themes such as emissions, environmental product innovation and human resources). A great example of this is Bassike’s recent B Corp certification achievement. Bassike has achieved B Corp certification with a high impact score of 92 in key areas including governance, workers, community and environment and customers, meaning that the brand highly values social and environmental performance, corporate governance, and transparency.

This information was compiled by Olvera Advisors

Connect with Olvera Advisors
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Watch the final Knowledge Exchange Session of the AFC FashTech Lab

Thank you for joining us on Monday June 6th for the fourth and final AFC FashTech Lab Knowledge Exchange for 2022. The webinar hosted by our FashTech Project Manager Tracey Hamilton hosted our fashion and technology participants to reveal the final rendered digital samples they have been working on for the last six months along with their individual digital sampling journeys, time and cost saving and the fashion brands view on the longevity of digital solutions within their business.

The Avatars:
The session revealed that avatars, or ‘digital fit models,’ have a much greater chance of working for the brands if they start with clear measurements from the outset - Bianca Spender used the measurements from one of their actual fit models so they were able to approve the avatar straight away, making the creation process more time efficient.


The realism of digital fabrics:
Both Bianca Spender and Matteau were impressed at the level of detail achievable in their digitally rendered fabrics. Peta from Matteau reflected that the appearance of the digital fabrics was one of her strongest reservations before starting FashTech Labs, however she stated that the actual ‘weight, drape and movement’ of the digital fabrics was incredibly life-like. Bianca Spender noted the potential for digital samples to eliminate the issue of the 'hanger appeal' of many of their draped garments that are best viewed on the body.

Consensus of cost/time savings:
Matteau was amazed at the time, cost and fabric savings they gained due to the digital sampling workflow, noting how many physical samples they produce that never make it to production resulting in a lot of wasted fabric. With the digital workflow they can review, refine and select samples for their final collection, noting their time to market was also significantly reduced due to the digital sampling workflow.




Ready to adopt digital sampling into your business? The AFC will develop a business case to show the time, cost, textile and carbon outcomes of this pilot program to help more businesses understand and adopt this workflow.

Stay tuned for the incoming case studies that will deep dive into the environmental impact of the program and reveal exactly how much water, time and textile waste has been saved and the actual cost savings for the brand participants. We will share reflections from the brands on how they plan to integrate the 3D sampling workflow after emerging from FashTech Lab as well as debunk many of the common myths surrounding digital sampling. The case studies will also demonstrate the potential for the digital sampling workflow as a tool to assist brands in transitioning to 'made-to-order' selling models to further reduce textile waste.

Help us improve the next FashTech Lab by answering five quick and easy questions. As a viewer what did you find most interesting, what do you wish there was more of and what do you want to see in the next iteration of the program?


Thank you to our technology partners; Style Atlas, Bandicoot, CoutureCAD, Ponz Studio, Neuno and ORDRE; who have guided the brands along their digital sampling workflow journey.

A special thanks to UTS, IMCRC and participating brands Cue, Bianca Spender, Matteau, Daniel Avakian, Eupheme, Palasade, Ramp Tramp Tramp Stamp and West 14th.

Meet Style Atlas & ORDRE | Tech Partners for the 2022 AFC FashTech Lab

The challenges faced by today’s fashion brands are many and well documented. However, new technologies offer workflows that can significantly improve a brands bottom line, time-to-market and environmental footprint. Implementing a 3D design workflow, especially when integrated with traditional ones, represents one of the best opportunities for brands to be able to revolutionise their product development and sampling process.


The purpose of the AFC FashTech Lab is to present and trial 3D design workflows where participating fashion businesses can discover the benefits and reach new potentials within their supply chain in a frictionless and cost effective way. Meet the AFC FashTech Lab Technology brands, who throughout the program's duration will be guiding the nine fashion businesses through every step of their digital sampling strategies and workflows.

Style Atlas
The creator of Quadrant, a product development platform for today’s fashion brands. Think of Quadrant like, Shopify for Fashion Makers. A single source of truth for all your product development needs that lives in the browser, is intuitive to use, cost effective and powerful.

Q1. Can you tell us about Quadrant, do you have a success story to share about a brand or business implementing the program?

If an industry insider tried to categorise Quadrant they would generally refer to it as a PLM. That is not wrong, but we don’t refer to Quadrant this way because users often think of PLM’s as old, clunky legacy software that they hate to use and costs a fortune. Quadrant is the opposite of that and that’s why we like to describe Quadrant as “Shopify for Fashion Makers”. So just like Shopify has revolutionised many brands' sales funnel, by making e-commerce easy to set up and manage, incorporate lot’s of powerful features but also be super cost effective, Quadrant does for the other side of a brands business; their design and product development.

Quadrant was originally designed to optimise traditional development workflows, but now we have introduced new functionality to facilitate and optimise digital and hybrid workflows, which we see as the future for fashion brands who wish to stay commercially and environmentally sustainable.

We are working with brands here in Australia, the US and Europe and even though each of them are very different in many ways they still share the same basic challenges; Dollars, Time and Carbon. The large amount of money they have to outlay to produce and sell each collection; The risk involved in long rigid lead times and the environmental costs associated with producing and selling each collection. What’s exciting for us is how Quadrant is assisting all the brands we are working with to reduce each of these cost centres.

Q2. What does the future of fashion look like if businesses adapt to more digital design workflows?

Ultimately, it can help disrupt the broken business model that prevails in the fashion industry today. A model that forces brands to sign up for high MOQ’s and continually seek lower unit costs. Actions required all to chase high margins that will allow them to still make a return after they have heavily discounted a significant proportion of each collection because they have such long, rigid lead times which are totally out of sync with fast moving consumer trends.

Digital design workflows can help to facilitate new “on-demand” workflows where brands can test the market without having to produce a single physical item. Business models that use technology to allow designers to test and trial new styles quickly without the same financial and environmental costs. So designers can be more creative, brands can retain higher margins without high MOQs and pressure on supply chain partners and the industry can lose its unwanted status as the second largest polluter after the oil industry.

The ORDRE Group comprises several fashion technologies redefining relationships between luxury brands, retailers, and consumers. Digital innovation is the company’s driving force.

Q1. What limitations are relieved when utilising digital showrooms?

Virtual showrooms provide fashion designers the opportunity to promote and sell their seasonal and core collections outside of traditional fashion market timings and locations. Removing the need to travel to conduct wholesale appointments saves fashion designers time, money and reduces unnecessary carbon emissions.

Q2. Can you share a success story of a brand you’ve worked with and how the ORDRE network allowed them to reach greater exposure? (in comparison to physical showings)

Throughout the last two years of the pandemic, AFC Virtual on ORDRE has assisted many Australian designers including P.E Nation, Helen Kaminski, Aje, and Jac+Jack to sell their wholesale collections to existing and prospective international buyers when travel was not possible. The program resulted in considerable virtual wholesale volume and a number of designers picking up new accounts in Europe, North America and Greater China.

To find out more about the AFC FashTech Lab head to the program page on the AFC website.

First Nations Fashion + Design opens at Edit Collection

First Nations Fashion + Design have now opened at Edit Collection, located at Sydney’s premier shopping district, Chatswood Chase.
On Saturday May 21, the store officially opened with a Welcome to Country and smoking ceremony by First Nations Elder Brendan Kerin Mitchell; and a panel discussion facilitated by artist, storyteller and FNFD ambassador Luke Currie-Richardson with Gantharri designer Bobbi Lockyer and Cultural Craftsmanship designer, Grace Lillian Lee. The store is now stocked with latest pieces from the AAFW runway from FNFD brands such as Ihraa Swim, Clothing the Gaps, Aarli, Myrrdah, Grace Lillian Lee, Ikuntji Artists and more.
First Nations Fashion + Design celebrates independent Indigenous designers and supports their growth and development in the fashion industry. The month-long residency created from a partnership with Afterpay, Vicinity Centres, Australian Fashion Council and supported by marketplace Welcome to Country, allows shoppers to discover and buy First Nations fashion in a state of the art concept store that features shoppable change room mirrors, a digital assistant to shoot and share selfies and is also fitted out with fully recyclable clothes hangers crafted from upcycled marine plastics, ocean bound plastics and post-consumer plastics courtesy of Arch & Hook.
FNFD x Edit Collection
Open from May 21 to June 22, 2022.
Level 1, (Near MJ Bale)
Chatswood Chase Sydney,
345 Victoria Avenue, Chatswood NSW
Image Credit: Joseph Mayers

Fashion 3.0, it’s sustainable | Watch the third Knowledge Exchange Session of the AFC FashTech Lab

Thank you for joining us on May 4th for the third AFC FashTech Lab Knowledge Exchange session where we brought our program participants back together to discuss the commercial viability of their current sampling strategy and discuss the sustainability benefits of transitioning to digital.

Thank you to our technology partners; Style Atlas, CoutureCAD and panel participants Dr. Clara Vuletich and Dr Lisa Lake; who joined us to discuss how Australian technology and fashion brands might develop solutions to lessen environmental impact, increase resilience, build networks, create jobs and return value to the local community.



Throughout the session the tech brand representatives tried to respond to as many of your questions in the time we had. For questions that were missed, go to this link where you will find responses to all unanswered questions.

The Future of Sustainable Selling:

Join us for the final FashTech Lab Knowledge Exchange, a 90 minute fireside chat where technology and fashion businesses share their results from trialling a 3D sampling workflow. Follow the link below to register and find out more.

DATE | Monday June 6 2022
TIME | 9:00am - 10:30am
WHERE| Online via Zoom


Meet neuno & Ponz Studio | Tech partners for the 2022 AFC FashTech Lab

The challenges faced by today’s fashion brands are many and well documented. However, new technologies offer workflows that can significantly improve a brands bottom line, time-to-market and environmental footprint. Implementing a 3D design workflow, especially when integrated with traditional ones, represents one of the best opportunities for brands to be able to revolutionise their product development and sampling process.


The purpose of the AFC FashTech Lab is to present and trial 3D design workflows where participating fashion businesses can discover the benefits and reach new potentials within their supply chain in a frictionless and cost effective way. Meet the AFC FashTech Lab Technology brands, who throughout the program's duration will be guiding the nine fashion businesses through every step of their digital sampling strategies and workflows.

​​A marketplace for authentic luxury fashion NFT and digital wearables; a new way to buy, trade and consume.

Q1. ‘Building a Wardrobe for the Metaverse’ - Can you break down the Neuno marketplace and how ownership works within digital fashion?

Neuno is a fashion tech company that collaborates with luxury fashion brands to create NFT’s of physical clothing/fashion items to then sell and distribute on our marketplace. Our consumers can purchase our collaboration drops from our marketplace and use the NFT’s they minted as digital wearables in various metaverses. We want to be your one-stop-shop for getting dressed and looking your best for the metaverse.

Holding a neuCard NFT grants you a spot in the exclusive world of neubians. That means you can be part of the digital wearable revolution to sweep over the fashion industry. Neuno ecosystem will bring established brands and their NFT drops to life and as a neuCard holder you are eligible to access those limited drops before anyone else.

Q2. How do you see digital/NFT fashion evolving over the next 10 years?

Over the next 10 years we hope that your digital life will be more important than ever. One of the ways you express yourself in the real world is through fashion and the clothes that you put on everyday. We want you to be able to express yourself in the same way digitally. That means purchasing digital wearables and showing off your outfits that you have collected in the metaverse. In the digital world/metaverse you are reborn again to be whoever you want to be. With digital wearables becoming more unique every day the possibilities are endless to try on variations of digital wearables combinations. We also feel that most luxury fashion brands would want to also display their work in the digital world as there is a whole new set of eyes there.

Ponz Studio
Ponz Studio, offering digital design services specific for the fashion industry thanks to a consolidated experience in the field and a solid 3D know-how.

Q1. Can you explain your favourite part of the digital design process?

I enjoy crafting all the details tha bring a digital garment to life. Working on the fabric look and refining the draping, adding trims, topstitches and labels and all those small aspects that enhance the realism of the product once completed. A very important aspect of my work is also setting up the right lighting to then render the final images or videos (as you would do in a “real” studio).

Q2. Why should digital design become the new normal when it comes to the development stage of product design?

I think the digital workflow really completes and refines the traditional one. Switching development tasks to digital will make them more efficient and sustainable, allowing designers to give time and resources to creative tasks that are sometimes given too little time.

To find out more about the AFC FashTech Lab head to the program page on the AFC website.

Stronger Together | Industry Modelling Report and Australian Fashion™ Launch

This morning we launched the Australian Fashion™ along with ‘Fashion Evolution: From Farm to Industry’, an EY industry report, sponsored by Afterpay.

In the short term, the fashion and textile industry has the potential to generate an additional $1.3 billion, including $700 million from additional investment, $500 million in exports and $100 million in private consumption and government expenditure. Over the next 10 years, the industry has the potential to deliver an additional $10.8 billion in economic gain, becoming a $38 billion industry by 2032 and creating an additional 86,000 jobs. The industry is made up of 77% women, driving women’s economic security and having the potential to deliver further career pathways and working opportunities.

In May 2021, the AFC was awarded a federal grant to create an Australian fashion certification trade mark and campaign to drive demand for Australian brands locally and internationally. Instantly recognisable, Australian Fashion™ will help more customers discover, explore and buy Australian fashion. The result will drive industry growth, more jobs and a greater contribution to the local economy that will future-proof the Australian fashion and textile industry.

This world-first, industry-led campaign will define Australian fashion, selling its unique creativity and progressive values to the world. For brands to become Australian Fashion™ certified, they must meet at least two of the following criteria; demonstrating a contribution to jobs and the local economy, Australian made, Australian owned, majority Australian employees, and Australian tax domiciled.

CEO of Australian Fashion Council, Leila Naja Hibri says “More than a trade mark, this is an opportunity to showcase the best of Australia’s fashion talent. For example, when Italian fashion is mentioned, we immediately visualise a distinct brand identity of quality and elegance. In a similar way, we have now identified four key pillars that distinguish Australia’s Fashion DNA: effortless style, raw nature, boundless optimism and fearless innovation. This, together with the trade mark, will help us clearly articulate the unique creativity and the progressive social and environmental values of Australian fashion on the world’s fashion stage.”

Certified brands must also pledge to a commitment to authentic Australian design to uphold the creative integrity of the industry nation brand, as well as to social and environmental impact commitments that drive the industry forward in transparent, responsible and inclusive practice.

Leila adds, “The Australian Fashion trade mark will be a driving force in building the industry’s growth trajectory to deliver substantial economic, social and environmental gains over the next ten years. We can show the world how prioritising people and the planet together with profit can lead to a legacy of thriving prosperity.”

“With women’s economic security now front and centre of Australia’s policy agenda, and with women representing more than 77% of our industry’s workforce, the fashion and textiles sector can play a pivotal role in advancing gender equality in our country. This is a cause very close to my heart.”

Brands can apply for the Australian Fashion™ trade mark on The multi-channel campaign and consumer website will launch in August in Australia 2022, followed by the UK in September 2022 with the objective to align with the UK-Australia Free Trade Agreement.

With support from Afterpay, AFC has also launched ‘Fashion Evolution: From Farm to Industry’ an EY report that models the extraordinary economic potential of the fashion and textile industry.

The report is based on four key policy asks:

1. Promote the Australian Fashion™ campaign locally and globally to turbo-charge local and export earnings

2. Build future manufacturing capability, boosting the demand for Australian fashion and textiles, including for cotton and wool fibres and their derivatives

3. Boost women’s economic security by developing career pathways for women throughout their working life, addressing current and future industry skills gaps and opportunities

4. Build a workable and sustainable circular economy across Australia’s clothing, uniforms and textiles supply chain

Implementing all policy recommendations in full will deliver $10.8 billion in economic gain over 10 years, with the potential to create an additional 86,000 jobs for Australians. In the short term, the policies will increase economic output of 1.3 billion, with a potential ROI of 19:1, on a modest funding request of $69 million. Key findings in the report also revealed that the industry’s contribution to GDP would move from 1.5% in 2021, to 2.12% by 2032, a 41% increase in contribution over the 10 years.

CEO of Afterpay, Anthony Eisen, says “The Australian fashion industry is a key creative and economic contributor to our nation. It’s an industry that employs hundreds of thousands - many of whom are women - it builds our cultural identity, showcases our capacity for innovation, and contributes to wider economic growth.”

"Fashion has always been at the core of the Afterpay business and we’re proud to support the Australian Fashion Council and Ernst & Young in producing a report that spotlights its current and potential contribution to the Australian economy”.

The Australian Fashion™ and ‘Fashion Evolution: From Farm to Industry’ launched at Afterpay Australian Fashion Week. Read the report here

To read more or to apply for the Australian Fashion™ visit

Meet Bandicoot & Couture Cad | Tech Partners for the 2022 AFC FashTech Lab

The challenges faced by today’s fashion brands are many and well documented. However, new technologies offer workflows that can significantly improve a brands bottom line, time-to-market and environmental footprint. Implementing a 3D design workflow, especially when integrated with traditional ones, represents one of the best opportunities for brands to be able to revolutionise their product development and sampling process.

The purpose of the AFC FashTech Lab is to present and trial 3D design workflows where participating fashion businesses can discover the benefits and reach new potentials within their supply chain in a frictionless and cost effective way. Meet the AFC FashTech Lab Technology brands, who throughout the program's duration will be guiding the nine fashion businesses through every step of their digital sampling strategies and workflows.

Bandicoot Imaging
Bandicoot digitises fabrics for the fashion industry. Using Shimmer Scan you can easily turn the materials library at your brand into digital fabrics, with photoreal colour, gloss and texture, ready for use in 3D fashion design software.

Q1. What are the quick wins of implementing digital fabric development and production from a sustainability perspective?

Digital fabrics, in the context of a digital sampling workflow, can significantly reduce material waste and carbon dioxide production. For a textile mill, a high-quality digital fabric can reach hundreds of potential buyers compared to the limited impact of a single physical swatch. This reduces the need for shipping which, in turn, cuts the carbon footprint. So too for brands when they replace physical samples with virtual samples. In some cases the amount of fabric needed can be reduced by 90%.

It is important to remember that digital fabrics are looking to complement traditional textile sampling rather than replace it. There will always be a need for 1-2 physical samples to realise a design but adopting virtual sampling for the bulk of sample iterations can only act to lower the impact of sampling on the environment.

Q2. What is a common misconception of digital fabrics and can you debunk those barriers?

One of the key aspects that has impeded adoption of digital fabrics is the misconception that the physical properties of a real fabric can’t be accurately captured and represented digitally. The main physical properties needed for realistic fabric simulation are bending, shear and tensile strength in relation to the fabric weight. In fact these required fabric properties can be measured with textile testing instruments available on the market. The biggest hurdle facing this aspect of digital fabrics is agreeing on a standard set of measurements that can be imported into 3D design software. The 3D Retail Coalition (3DRC) has brought together the stakeholders to address this problem and work towards a standard operating procedure.

Couture Cad enables designers to view their designs in a 3D environment on an avatar customised to their brands measurements. Designs can be viewed in accurate fabric/colour/prints/drape. Changes can be made quickly and easily. Once design is approved, pattern files are sent for sampling.

Q1. Can you explain the process of developing avatars and how they can effectively communicate a garment's story before entering the sampling phase?

The first step is customising the avatar in Clo3D. Most brands use a women’s base size 8 but we also use mens, children’s and plus size. We can also import avatars into CLO of human or fictional proportions or completely customise based on the brands needs. Patterns are either imported or created in CLO, they are then simulated on the avatar and are viewable at every angle, pose or motion cycle. Any adjustments to fit or design are made on the avatar then we email them to the designer to check/approve. 

Digital fabrics are available in CLO and many fabric suppliers are now offering digital fabrics so simulation is as accurate as reality. You can change the grainline to bias, see accurate drape, use pressure tools to create a puffer jacket or quilted panels and puckering to make topstitching appear more realistic. There are also many trims available including buttons, buckles and zips that can be viewed on your garment. A designer can now present exactly what they envisage across an entire collection, no longer “close enough” due to poor communication.

Q2. What are the sustainable/cost saving benefits brands can see from adopting 3D processes into the development process?

A jacket has around 35 pattern pieces. When developing on an avatar we only need to create 5-7 pieces. We also don’t need all the linings and fusings until the design is approved for sampling. If need be, a designer can view the entire collection without cutting into a single piece of fabric. Normally sampling requires up to 3 samples before production taking up to 3 weeks each cycle. 3D development can reduce this to as little as 1 sample in a matter of hours/days depending on design. No fit model, just the designer and pattern maker. Imagine the cost to brands with 100 designs per season x 4 seasons per year. 3D development will not only save time but hundreds of thousands of dollars annually. There is also minimal waste so the environment wins.

Before we get carried away with the limitless capabilities of 3D development I must expose a few negatives.

To use CLO3D or any other similar software effectively, you have to be a skilled pattern-maker with graphics skills. We don’t have enough skilled people at pattern-maker level or the time to train existing workers who are under tight deadlines to adopt the graphics skills they will need in this 3D environment. There are also major costs involved when setting up the software and computers needed.

The pressure point in the 3D development process is on the pattern-maker. They will have to transition from a 2D to 3D mindset which some will struggle with. In conclusion, as much as we all want the fashion industry to adopt 3D, it will take years and a lot of investment and education to make the shift. It was the same when the fashion industry went from paper/cardboard patterns to digital. That took roughly 10 years!

Stay Tuned for next weeks profile on Neuno.
To find out more about the AFC FashTech Lab head to the program page on the AFC website.

A Letter From Leila, CEO Of The AFC | April 2022

First, I would like to acknowledge the Traditional Owners of country throughout Australia and pay my respects to their Elders past, present and emerging.

With May around the corner and as we edge closer towards AfterPay Australian Fashion Week (AAFW), I am filled with a sense of excitement and nervousness, as I truly believe this is our moment to unite and transform our industry together.

As many of you know, in May last year we were awarded a grant by the federal government to create a Certified trade mark (CTM) and develop a campaign to market Australian Fashion as a brand, locally and globally. After almost 12 months of countless hours of consultations, meetings and good-old-fashioned hard work, the AFC will be launching the CTM on the first day of AAFW at Carriageworks.

This CTM will be a world first in its ambition to position Australia’s fashion as the unique and progressive creative industry that it is. The CTM, together with a consumer campaign and website, which will be launched in August, will set the stage for Australian Fashion to continue to captivate the world with its effortless style, raw nature, boundless optimism and fearless innovation.

Our aim is to drive awareness and demand for Australian Fashion at home and abroad, by creating a unifying trade mark, campaign & platform that delivers profit and jobs to our sector while promoting responsible social and environmental practices.

Also at the event, thanks to Afterpay, we will be launching a new EY Report that will model the economic potential of our industry based on four key policy asks that we have recently presented to federal government on both sides of the political spectrum:

1. Promote the Australian Fashion CTM campaign locally and globally to turbo-charge local and export earnings

2. Make fibre and its derivatives (textiles, uniforms and clothing) a priority in the building of Australia’s sovereign capabilities

3. Boost women’s economic security by developing career pathways for women throughout their working life, addressing current and future industry skills gaps and opportunities

4. Build a workable and sustainable circular economy across Australia’s clothing, uniforms and textiles supply chain

As you can see, there is a lot to be excited and nervous (in a good way) about! Again, this is our moment. I hope you will join the AFC in transforming, strengthening and securing our industry for the future.

For those of you who are not yet AFC members, now is the time to join us to ensure that you are part of this game-changing journey. Become an AFC member here.

Thank you for your continued support of the Australian Fashion Council.

Leila Naja Hibri
CEO | Australian Fashion Council

The journey so far with our AFC FashTech Lab participants

Thank you for joining us on April 13th for the second AFC FashTech Lab Knowledge Exchange session where we brought our program participants back together to share their digital sampling journey so far and previewed their designs as they enter the digital toile stage.

Thank you to our technology partners; Bandicoot Imaging, CoutureCAD, Ponz Studio and Style Atlas; who shared insights into their incredible technologies whilst demonstrating the transformation from ideation to creation.




Fashion 3.0...It's Sustainable

In our third Knowledge Exchange of the AFC FashTech Lab, our Fashion and Technology program participants are going to deep dive into the commercial viability of their current sampling strategy and discuss the sustainability benefits of transitioning to digital.
Hear from an expert panel on how Australian technology and Fashion brands might just be key to a better future.  How might we develop solutions to lessen environmental impact, increase resilience, build networks, create jobs and return value to the local community? Tune in as the panel discusses the potential for digital sampling to support the localisation of the fashion sampling supply chain in Australia.

Panelists Include:
- Dr Clara Vuletich, Circularity Coach and Advisor, Future Fashion Agency & Academy
- Dr Lisa Lake, Sustainable Fashion + Textiles Centre of Excellence, UTS
- Pete Smit, Founder & CEO, Style Atlas

DATE | Wednesday, May 4 2022
TIME | 9:00am - 10:00am
WHERE| Online via Zoom


Throughout the session the tech brand representatives tried to respond to as many of your questions in the time we had. For questions that were missed, go to this link where you will find responses to all unanswered questions.

TBC June 2022: Knowledge Exchange 4 and networking event.

A night of balance | My General Store at Edit Collection

Last week we had the pleasure of attending the launch of My General Store’s latest collection ‘Balance’ at Edit Collection, the retail concept store brought to you by the AFC, Vicinity Centres and Afterpay.

Media, industry players, influencers and models adorned in the new collection gathered at the store’s Chatswood Chase location to celebrate the triumphant residency of My General Store at Edit Collection over the past two months. Chosen based on the criteria of sustainability, mindful creativity, innovation, diversity and inclusivity, MGS’s new collection ‘Balance’ is an exploration on the duality of masculine and feminine and how those two themes can work together to create harmony.


Designed to be adored and re-worn for many years, My General Store design and manufacture all of their pieces on Australian shores whilst keeping planet in mind to reduce waste at every stage. The sustainable, less waste ethos is carried on throughout the store from clothing to fit out; with all hangers crafted in upcycled marine plastics, ocean bound plastics and post-consumer plastics supplied by Arch & Hook’s BLUE® Hanger Programme.


In line with the evening’s eco-focussed approach, guests enjoyed vegan catering courtesy of boutique Sydney company Radish who served cashew cheese canapes, cauliflower bowls and watermelon tuna.

You can shop My General Store at Edit Collection until April 13th, located at Shop L131, Level 1, Chatswood Chase, 345 Victoria Avenue, Chatswood NSW 2067

What's coming next:
Stay tuned for the next resident brands, with First Nations Fashion + Design opening in May, and Esse Studios opening in July.

Head to the Edit Collection Program Page to find out more click here

Image Credit: Hanna Lassen - view her website here

Providing dignity & hope | Women’s and Girls’ Emergency Centre x Thread Together

Clothing is a basic human right. Sadly, in Australia, more than 3.5 million people do not have access to essential clothing. This equates to one in eight adults and one in six children. We spoke to Sasha Brown, Projects and Communications Lead at Women’s and Girls’ Emergency Centre (WAGEC) about the positive impact Thread Together has had on the women and families seeking refuge at the centre.

Q1. Can you tell us about what charity or venue you work with?

We are Women’s and Girls’ Emergency Centre or WAGEC and we work on the lands of the Gadigal and Wangal people of the Eora Nation. We are based in Redfern and operate 3 crisis accommodation sites and over 40 transitional accommodation sites for women and families across the inner-city and inner-west of Sydney. As well as supporting over 200 women and children every night, we also provide programs that build financial independence, nurture healing and wellbeing, enrich children’s development and prevent violence from happening in the first place. We support women and families to create safer futures and work with the community to end gender-based violence in a generation.

Q2. How did you first hear about Thread Together?

We first heard about Thread Together nearly two years ago through another community organisation who linked us up knowing how beneficial it would be for the women and families we support.

Q3. Can you tell us about receiving the clothing and how the recipients react once they receive the clothing that they chose?

These were some of the comments from the women made about Thread Together’s recent visit to the refuge.

"I’m so glad I came today. It was lovely sitting out in the sun with all the other mums, talking and laughing. And I went home with some clothes for me and my boy. Today is a good day."

"Oh my gosh, today is the best day. My boy asks for these shoes at the shops but they cost so much money, I have to say no all the time. He looks sad. Then this bus and the lovely ladies come and on the table are the same shoes, and in perfect size for my boy. I am over the moon and so very very happy. I cannot wait to surprise him when he comes home from school today. This will be the best day ever for him. I cannot wait to see his face. I got some lovely clothes for my children and myself, but these shoes for him, WOW!”

Q4. What has been the most rewarding moment at Thread Together?

The most rewarding moments have been seeing the excitement, confidence, and sense of renewed dignity among the women and families who receive the clothing from Thread Together. One woman, and mum of a 3-year-old, made the comment: “Oh I feel sexy. Just sexy for me, not for anyone else. It’s very nice to have some lovely clothes that make me feel happy.” Whether a woman is getting ready for a job, fitting out her children for the school year or building confidence after having a baby, it is these little moments that are worth celebrating.


The AFC are proud to partner with Thread Together to reduce landfill and give excess clothing a new life with people less fortunate. Visit our Thread Together Program page here to donate clothing or volunteer at Thread Together.

Jordan Dalah Studio | Finalist in the International Woolmark Prize

Seven of the world’s most promising emerging design talents have been selected for the 2022 International Woolmark Prize - the world’s original and most prestigious fashion awards and talent development program. Hundreds of applications were reviewed by an esteemed panel of industry members and The Woolmark Company to select the seven finalists. Among the finalists is Australian Designer Jordan Dalah, who we had the pleasure of asking a few questions about his history, processes and what to expect from his merino wool collection.

Q1. Jordan, congratulations on being named a finalist in the 2022 International Woolmark Prize! Before we jump into that, can you tell us a bit about your time at Central Saint Martins and how your studies there have informed/influenced your design direction today?

From very early on in my fashion career, when I was a student at Central Saint Martins I discovered that working with Merino wool jersey is an absolute joy. Because it is a natural fibre, it feels and looks different to other jerseys. It has fine specks of natural slubbing that gives it character. It also takes colour and dye really beautifully. Using Merino wool jersey feels like cheating sometimes because the fabric does a lot of the work for you.
Since leaving Central Saint Martins and returning to Australia, it’s really been about establishing a strong identity. I don’t want to be one of those brands that’s known for one silhouette, or aesthetic. I find my brand to be a slow-burning brand, and I think that is the best case for a brand to exist. And I feel like I’m at a point now where people see something, and they know it’s my brand.
My time at Central Saint Martins helped me find a perfect balance between my brand’s commerciality and strong and uncompromisingly bold aesthetic.

Q2. With local manufacturing and sustainability becoming more front of mind for fashion spectators and consumers, can you tell us about what conscious practices you implement at Jordan Dalah Studio?

As a small independent brand where every scrap of fabric and every roll of pattern cutting paper counts, I am naturally always finding ways to work sustainably. I design, sample and manufacture all my garments in Australia. I feel that it is my job as a new generation of designers to preserve the small but important and highly skilled manufacturing industry that still exists and operates in both Sydney and Australia. I believe that the art of preserving artisanal clothes is what makes Jordan Dalah a unique brand and, in turn, a sustainable brand. My Woolmark Prize collection is made from 100% deadstock material, sourced from luxury brands around the world whose fabric would otherwise be destroyed.

Q3. As one of the seven finalists of the International Woolmark Prize you’ve received a AU$60,000 grant for the development of a Merino collection under this year’s theme ‘Play’. Can you tell us about what you’ve been working on and what you’ll be presenting?

I’ll be presenting a collection made from 100% deadstock fabric. I always aim to bring historic codes of dressing into a contemporary space. I am inspired by the dramatic silhouettes found in theatre costume, but similarly I am also always referencing the simplicity of everyday dress. I have loved bringing these worlds together through my collection.
I started looking at the natural tones on wool, loving all the milky shades of off white that become lighter or more buttery depending on the percentage of wool to polyester. My color palette takes shape from these milky tones that are contrasted with the red and blue markings of spray paint on the sheep. It is a subtle reference to the wool industry but powerful because it’s this small gesture and acknowledgement of the beauty of the sheep that has fueled my Woolmark Prize collection. With this collection I am using silhouettes synonymous with my brand to interpret the brief.

Q4. How would winning the 2022 International Woolmark Prize help you build your brand, what's next for Jordan Dalah?

To me the Woolmark Prize is one of the most creative prizes a designer can be part of. It is nice to have the recognition from such a prestigious judging panel but similarly to also be an Australian designer that is doing something a little different when it comes to designing and establishing a brand. Having Woolmark not only acknowledge but support and believe in what I do really solidifies my place on the international fashion circuit.
Just being part of this competition alone has opened doors to Wool suppliers and innovative wool factories globally that I will continue to use and work with. The opportunity to meet with the judging panel is incredibly exciting and I can't wait to show them more of my brand. Winning the Woolmark Prize will allow me to more easily embark on projects I otherwise might have not been able to do without the generosity of having received the Woolmark prize.

To find out more about the 2022 International Woolmark Prize, click here

AIME 'reclAIMEd' | Reimagining fashion waste for good

AIME is an Australian charity tackling educational inequality through creatively connecting marginalised kids with mentorship programs and advocating Indigenous intelligence for a better world. Launched in 2005 by a 19-year-old Indigenous Australian, the charity now works in over 52 countries, and has helped educate and uplift more than 25,000 kids globally.


The Program is excited to announce the first brand partners for the AIME ‘ReclAIMEd’ dead-stock charity initiative. The opportunity allows brands to creatively reimagine their dead-stock fabrics and garments, enhance their ethical and environmental sustainability, and support the educational mentorships of marginalised kids in need. They welcome Arnsdorf, Bondi Born, Kit-X, Maurie & Eve, MJ Bale, and Nagnata, with more brand partners to be announced soon. Sounds like fun? It’s not too late to join.


Email to hear more.


Through their ethos of ‘unlikely connections for a fairer world’ ReclAIMEd is a new initiative by AIME to offer brands the chance to use their dead-stock for good. Designers reimagine their excess fabrics and stock, creating avant-garde one-offs for auction or simply re-cutting best sellers with dead-stock fabrics, selling the pieces through their channels with the proceeds going to AIME - a truly unique opportunity.


Through a partnership with the ReclAIMEd program, brands get the opportunity to enhance their brand’s ethical and environmental sustainability, reduce waste and support the educational mentorships of marginalised kids in need.


Acknowledging the process of creating the garments will vary between brands, you have complete autonomy to work with your resource availability and timeline. All you need to do is try! There is no long term commitment, and you can choose to do as many (or as little!) pieces as you please. The creative is completely left to you!


The deadline to sign on is April 30, with the celebration of the launch happening through AIME’s online ‘Fashion for Good Week’ - 2nd-5th May 2022.


Read more here or contact the manager of the program from Sonzai Studios directly:

AFC Volunteering at Thread Together: Team Building during lockdown 2021

Whilst the AFC team were working from home during lockdown, only communicating by email and Zoom, with some of us yet to meet face to face, we booked in our volunteering session at Thread Together to help get clothing out to communities in need.

Whilst enduring Sydney’s 2021 lockdown, with precautions in place and masks on, AFC team members the AFC team spent half a day at the Thread Together HQ picking and packing orders for people who otherwise wouldn’t have had access to new clothing.

Aside from giving these donated clothes a new life and reverting them from landfill, it was a fantastic time to get to know each other and interact outside of Zoom.

The process of picking and packing orders is a simple task, although when you add on the amount of clothing that goes out daily based on the recipients style choice, size and age, it becomes a process of problem solving that in the AFC’s case, got us talking, collaborating and really building our togetherness as a team.

During our session we were able to talk to the Volunteers at Thread Together, listening to triumphant success stories of how these clothes make an immense positive impact on so many people's lives. Stories of young girls in rural communities receiving dresses for their school formal or clothing entire families who are doing it tough. After just a few hours we had helped the Thread Together team get these orders ready to be picked up and sent out plus got to know each other a whole lot better.

"Volunteering at Thread Together was an amazing experience for multiple reasons. The first being I met my manger for the first time outside of our weekly zoom meetings, and the second was that we were collectively spending time helping the charity and the recipients who would soon be receiving their delivery of brand new, unworn clothes.

The process of registering to volunteer and learning the ropes was made easy by the incredible team at Thread Together, plus a fun playlist to bop to whilst we picked and packed."

- Hannah, Communications and Content Coordinator

For more information on volunteering with Thread Together and how you and your team can get involved, click here.

It all starts with a thread | Meet Anthony Chesler, CEO of circular fashion charity Thread Together

Founded in 2012 with the simple idea to donate over dispose, Australian charity Thread Together has been diverting clothing from landfill by collecting brand new, unsold clothes from brands all around the country and providing them to people and communities in need. We spoke to Anthony Chesler, CEO of Thread Together about the inner workings of the charity along with what the coming year holds.

Q1. Before Thread Together you worked in a leadership role within management consulting. What led to you Thread Together and how has your previous experience informed your role as CEO?

Working in the not-for-profit space is new for me. After qualifying as a Chartered Accountant, I began my career at EY and later co-founded a technology business in 2000 which evolved into a management consultancy driving profit improvement which was later acquired by global outsourcing business.
After helping to solve many complex problems for large local and global organisations, I started searching for more meaningful complex problems to solve and I also wanted to know that the time I was spending was not necessarily lining shareholder value but actually helping people in need, particularly vulnerable Australians as well as our environment.
“A lot of people go, ‘Well, you have to be successful first to be able to then give back’. I was of the belief that you can give back along the journey and you don’t have to wait until the back end of your career to contribute,”

Q2. With more than 3 million units of clothing delivered by Thread Together to communities in need, can you unpack that number by giving us some insight into the day to day proceedings at the Thread Together HQ?

Thread Together has diverted more than 3 million pieces of clothing from landfill and this number continues to grow each day.
Every week, we are working alongside registered charities, welfare and social service agencies to provide clothing to more than 2,000 Australians doing it tough.
These include women escaping domestic violence, homeless adults, and children, and those who just arrived in the country seeking refuge. New clothing is also provided to the long-term unemployed, seeking equal standing when going to an interview, those coming out of long-term health care, and many who are rebuilding their lives after being devastated by the droughts, floods and the bushfires and more recently the pandemic.
In a typical week we send nearly 25,000 units of clothing all around the country.
Thread Together offers a frictionless solution to brands to manage their excess stock in the most ethical way.
When ready, we arrange to collect the products and bring them back to our centre. Then every day we host our network of corporate and community volunteers as well as many fashion brands to help us to sort the clothes into categories and sizes so that they are ready to be given to someone in need, for example a person returning to the workforce having been unemployed for a long time is given a new suit, shirts, ties, shoes etc.

Q3. Can you tell us about the Thread Together Clothing Hubs/offering that ‘in-store’ experience within communities in need?

When we give clothes to people, we provide choice to them, in the same way that we choose what we want to wear. This is very important to empowering people and restoring dignity and hope for a better tomorrow.
Today, we have three ways in which we give clothing to people. The first is what we call a “clothing hub”. We have created an authentic shopping experience for someone doing it tough. How does this work? Well, social service agencies all around the country, provide a “gift card” (a voucher or a referral) to their clients to come into our “clothing hubs” to browse, try-on and select clothing that meets their style. Often, they are being supported and styled by a fashion brand that donates clothing to us. The people that we are helping can access clothes for themselves and their children. A typical wardrobe for a person in need can be 30-40 units of clothing or more than 50 units for someone that has left a domestic and abusive relationship with nothing.
The second way we provide new clothing to people is via a fleet of our mobile wardrobes stationed around the country. These vehicles are fitted out with a walk-in-wardrobe and merchandised with appropriate clothing. We drive to community partners around the country and give their clients the opportunity to choose clothes. Our fleet used extensively during natural disasters.
The final way is via online, in this case, social-workers sit alongside their clients and help them to select clothes, in the same way that anyone shops online – exact same experience. Being able to offer a service online means we can get clothing to people in need all around the country every day.
In 2022 we will be introducing a new way to give clothing to people. We will be delivering a physical modular wardrobe with a capsule or clothing to women’s shelters and crisis accommodation centres around the country. In doing so, we will be able to provide immediate access to women and children that have escaped a domestic and abusive relationship with essential clothes on arrival (e.g. underwear, pjs, loungewear).

Q4. What has been the most exciting/triumphant moment during your time at Thread Together?

Being able to provide a small amount of dignity at someone's most difficult moment is a truly humbling and rewarding experience. Unfortunately, the opportunity to create these moments is only increasing as the frequency of major crises increases – the compounding impact of the pandemic, bushfires, floods, those seeking refuge from Afghanistan on top of the ever-growing daily need of those experiencing vulnerability across Australia cannot be understated.

Q5. What's the best way for brands to approach partnering with Thread Together?

Our website is a great place to start, and no clothing donation is too small – we would be happy to arrange to collect the donation as well.
Many brands partner with us beyond donating new clothing, for example, some brands bring their teams to volunteer at our fulfilment centre in our clothing hubs. Other brands lend us some talent (i.e. skilled volunteering) and quite a large number of brands support us with a small financial donation.
Head over to our website to learn more and get involved

Q6. What’s next for Thread Together? Any exciting developments or upcoming programs?

We are excited and optimistic for the year ahead and we are working on two new innovative solutions to keep clothing in circulation and clothe communities in need.
The first is the installation of modular wardrobes inside women’s refuges and crisis accommodation centres around the country. This ensures that we can meet the immediate need for new clothing when women and children arrive with nothing but the clothes they are wearing.
The second is several innovative collaborations with iconic Australian designers and partners which focuses on helping us to better manage product where supply currently exceeds demand with the mantra of keeping clothing in circulation at its highest value for as long as possible.
Finally, this is our tenth year, so we will be celebrating all our partners that have helped us to keep clothing in circulation and clothe communities in need.

The AFC are proud to partner with Thread Together to reduce landfill and give excess clothing a new life with people less fortunate. Visit our Thread Together Program page here to donate clothing or volunteer at Thread Together.

The 3D digital design and sampling process with our AFC FashTech Lab participants

Thank you for joining us on March 2nd for the first FashTech Lab Knowledge Exchange session where we caught up with our fashion and tech participants to discuss what a 3D development workflow looks like and how it stacks up against a traditional physical sampling workflow.

Thank you to our technology partners; Bandicoot Imaging, CoutureCAD, Ponz Studio and Style Atlas; who demonstrated how their software and services work together to tackle a new, more sustainable sampling process.



At the next milestone, the fashion and technology businesses will deep dive into challenges of transitioning through a digital 3D sampling process, discuss collaborative solutions and how technology can help. Register for the second Knowledge Exchange Session coming up on Wednesday, 6 April. Register here

Throughout the session the tech brand representatives tried to respond to as many of your questions in the time we had. For questions that were missed, go to this link where you will find responses to all unanswered questions.

Wednesday 4 May 2022: Knowledge Exchange 3, delivered remotely via ZOOM;
TBC June 2022: Knowledge Exchange 4 and networking event.

Product Stewardship Scheme Town Hall Meeting Notes

On 2 February the AFC and Consortium members held our first open industry session to start the conversation around co-designing a National Clothing Product Stewardship Scheme: A Roadmap to Clothing Circularity in Australia.

With almost 400 industry members participating from all facets of the fashion and textile eco-system, we are off to a good start.

Thank you to everyone who registered and attended our very first Product Stewardship Scheme Town Hall Meeting. We are humbled at the amount of engagement, positivity and collaboration we saw during the Town Hall through the Chat and Q&As.

In case you missed it, you can watch the recording below and download the Q&A’s.

The Scheme aims to improve the design, recovery, reuse and recycling of textiles, providing a roadmap to 2030 for clothing circularity in Australia in line with National Waste Policy Action Plan targets. The development of this Scheme requires the entire industry to come together, to contribute and have your say in how the Scheme will deliver the best outcomes - environmentally, socially and economically.

We would like to thank Yatu Widders-Hunt who commenced our proceedings with a wonderful Acknowledgement of Country; The Minister for the Environment, The Hon. Sussan Ley, MP for her support and commitment to sustainability; John Gertsakis from the Product Stewardship Centre for Excellence; Industry speakers Chris Foley (Kmart Group), Eloise Bishop (Country Road Group) and Courtney Holm (A.BCH); Consortium members, Omer Soker (Charitable Recycling Australia), Dr Alice Payne (QUT), Peter Allan (SRU), Claire Kneller (WRAP) and Leila Naja Hibri (AFC); Key collaborators, National Retail Association (NRA), Australian Retailers Association (ARA), Waste Management and Resource Recovery Association (WMRR) and Australian Council of Recycling (ACOR), and dozens of other stakeholders across the entire clothing value chain including brands, retailers, industry, academia and federal, state and local governments.



Throughout the session we tried to respond to as many of your questions in the time we had. For those questions we missed go to this link where you will find responses against the key themes that arose.

If you would like to join 'Scheme Design' workshops, or 'Industry Roadmap' workshops, or suggest a sub-segment you may like to work on with others in that area please register your interest here or email the consortium members directly, contact details below.

The Consortium will hold sessions with our Collaborators and Reference Group members over the coming months to develop the Scheme in more detail. We will then test our work with you.


CEO, Australian Fashion Council

Project Manager, National Clothing Stewardship Scheme
Australian Fashion Council

CEO, Charitable Recycling Australia

Associate Professor - Fashion, School Of Design, QUT.

CEO, Sustainable Resource Use

Head Of Asia Pacific, WRAP




AFC Toolkits | Grants & Funding guide for Australian Fashion and Textiles

See what resources are available to you and your business in this handy guide that has been developed specifically for businesses in the Australian fashion & textile industry.

AFC Members can access the Grants and Funding Toolkit here.

AFC members have access to the newest addition in the AFC’s Business toolkit, developed with the key purpose of assisting the Australian Fashion and Textile industry navigate what grants and funding is available based on your business type and location.

Find what resources and access to funding you can receive from a Federal, State and Local level around innovation, exporting, sustainability, manufacturing and more.

Broken down into national opportunities and state by state, this evolving resource can guide you through what's out there, how much assistance you can receive and when to apply.

The sections are as follows;

1. National Opportunities
2. Victoria (VIC)
3. New South Wales (NSW)
4. Queensland (QLD)
5. South Australia (SA)
6. Western Australia (WA)
7. Tasmania (TAS)
8. Northern Territory (NT)
9. Australian Capital Territory (ACT)

AFC Members can access the Grants and Funding Toolkit here.

Published January 2022

Note: The Australian Fashion Council (AFC) makes every effort to ensure that information is accurate at the time of publication.

A Letter from Leila, CEO of the AFC | January 2022

First, I would like to acknowledge the Traditional Owners of country throughout Australia and pay my respects to their Elders past, present and emerging.

I feel so privileged to be back at the AFC and to send you this letter. I am hoping that you are all safe and well. I know many of you are dealing with the havoc of Omicron as we start this New Year. I know, like me, you were hoping the start of 2022 would be the beginning of the end for all the Covid-related obstacles we all faced last year. I also know that despite all of this, like we did last year, our sector will band together as a community and we will achieve great wins for the future of our industry.

2022 is going to be a very important year for us; a year that will mark a significant change and evolution not seen in decades in the Australian Fashion and Textile industry. With the help of great partners, the AFC has some amazing projects in the pipeline that will support our sector’s growth and prosperity including:

Australian Fashion Brand Project, a world first initiative to create an ‘Australian Fashion’ Certified Trade Mark & campaign to drive demand locally and globally for Australian Fashion.

National Clothing Product Stewardship Scheme which will create a plan to improve the way we design, recover, reuse and recycle clothing in Australia - working towards a circular economy within our industry;

AFC FashTech Lab a testing ground for 3D design aimed at reducing waste and increasing sustainability.

From an advocacy perspective we will continue to lobby and communicate our industry’s needs to the government. In early February, we will be travelling to Parliament House in Canberra to discuss key Policy reform proposals that will help future-proof our industry, build our sovereign advanced manufacturing capability, accelerate the momentum of Australian Fashion’s nation brand and turbo-charge our export earnings. Keep an eye out for our soon to be released Election Manifesto that will give you more detail re the above.

For those of you who are not yet AFC members, now is the time to join us to ensure that you are part of this game-changing journey. Become an AFC member here.

Thank you for your continued support of the Australian Fashion Council.

Leila Naja Hibri
CEO | Australian Fashion Council

Australia-UK Free Trade Agreement: Good news for Australian-Made exporters to the UK.

Businesses that export Australian-made goods will benefit from immediate elimination of tariffs on over 99% of Australian goods exported to the UK, once the agreement is in force in 2022.


In December 2021, The Hon. Dan Tehan MP announced an Australia-UK Free Trade Agreement (FTA) making Australian exports to the UK cheaper, and opening up more opportunities for Australian-made brands in the UK. The Australia-UK FTA is due to be in force in 2022. 

This is the most comprehensive and ambitious free trade agreement that Australia has, other than with New Zealand, showing the Government’s commitment to free trade as a driver of economic growth and strong bilateral relationships.

The Australia-UK FTA delivers benefits for Australians across the board - the biggest win being that exporters will benefit from immediate elimination of tariffs on over 99 per cent of Australian goods exports to the UK, valued at around $9.2 billion, when the agreement enters into force. Australian businesses will also have the right to bid for a greater variety of UK government contracts worth an estimated half-a-trillion dollars annually.

UK businesses will be encouraged to invest in Australia thanks to best practice investment rules, including to set up regional headquarters in Australia to leverage our network of free trade agreements.

There are also benefits to farmers, professionals wanting to enter the UK workforce, young people travelling and more. The Hon. Dan Tehan MP shared details in the Press Release here



For Australian-origin fashion exports, the UK’s tariff will be 0 per cent at entry into force of the FTA.  

For goods to claim the preferential tariff rate under the Agreement, the goods must be Australian-origin (i.e. meet the requirements of Chapter 4 Rules of Origin).  

There are three ways for goods to be Australian-origin:

  1. 1. Goods that are wholly obtained in Australia (defined under Chapter 4 Article 4.3).
  2. 2. Goods produced using only Australian and/or UK materials, these goods will be originating as they are produced entirely in either or both Australia or the UK (see Chapter 4 Article 4.2 (b) ).  
  3. 3. Goods that are produced using materials sourced from countries other than Australia and the UK (non-originating materials).  

In this third case, the production performed on the non-originating materials must meet the relevant Product Specific Rule as listed in Annex 4-B Product Specific Rules here.

You will need to know the HS-Code for the good and then locate the relevant rule.  Goods classified as ‘Textiles and Garments’ are listed between Chapters 50 to 63, with footwear in Chapter 64.  

For greater certainty, you may wish to consider applying for an ‘Advance Ruling’ with the UK HM Royal Customs, which will provide an Australian trader with clarity as to whether the good is originating and can claim preferential tariff treatment under the Agreement (Chapter 5 Article 5.10

For more detailed information, see the official text here, in particular Annex 4B. 

We will wait for the announcement for the date that the FTA will be in force.

AFC FashTech Lab: Sustainable digital design workflows accelerate more fashion brands into the metaverse.

Applications for AFC FashTech Lab have now closed

The Australian Fashion Council with the support of City of Sydney has launched the AFC FashTech Lab program for fashion and textile businesses, commencing in January 2022. The aim of the program is to accelerate technology adoption in the first stages of the design process.

With fashion companies around the world expected to increase investment in digital innovation in 2022, the AFC FashTech Lab will give Sydney fashion and textiles businesses the opportunity to trial technology and contribute to creating an industry pathway to integrate or digital, sustainable design into their workflows.

The AFC FashTech Lab will launch with an incubator and networking event to take participants through futuremap®, a business diagnostic tool to test technology adoptions and readiness courtesy of the Innovative Manufacturing CRC (IMCRC) and the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) , and a series of Knowledge Exchange workshops that will deep dive into the challenges faced as each brand pilots of a piece of technology and discuss collaborative solutions. Fashion business will be matched with a technology business for 1:1 sessions over the course of the program including peer to peer consulting and a trial of the technology solutions.

This program will be offered to a limited number of brands with businesses selected based on presence in the City of Sydney, ability to actively participate in the program, willingness to adopt new technology and upskill, as well as criteria of sustainability and mindful creativity.

Application close for the program 14th January 2022.

To find out more, head to the AFC FashTech Lab page here

Trend forecasting and consumer insights to inspire and future-proof brands | The Future Laboratory

The Future Laboratory is one of the world’s most renowned futures consultancies. With a unique blend of trend forecasting, consumer insight, foresight, brand strategy and innovation, they inspire and future-proof organisations.

AFC Members can receive a complimentary 2 months access to LS:N Global Premium, a subscription-based insights platform that documents new consumer behaviour and key industry trends to give business professionals the confidence to make informed decisions about the future - view here

How do you work with the fashion industry to deliver trends and market intelligence?

We deliver foresight through a number of products and services, including our trends intelligence platform, LS:N Global, and in person through our Strategic Services. Together, our strategic foresight helps clients such as Selfridges, Farfetch, LVMH, Reebok, H&M, Lululemon, Country Road Group, Chanel & P.E Nation to harness market trends, understand and adapt to emerging consumer needs, position their brands for success and keep them ahead of their competitors.

LS:N Global members can access our fashion sector to understand the key shifts and emerging talent driving change within the fashion industry globally.

Could you share some fashion industry insights & trends from 2021 and where you see it heading for 2022?

Trend 1: Eco-motional Fashion
As climate anxieties abound, a new wave of change-makers are paving the way for a more positive, human-centric approach to sustainable and ethical fashion.
The fashion industry is facing up to the need to operate beyond greenwashing tactics. But while most brands are aware of the need to make drastic changes to operate more sustainably, action needs to be taken to ensure the next generation of designers take an eco-conscious approach from the outset. Global consumers are demanding more from brands too, with a majority (80%) believing that brands must be transparent about their environmental impacts in the production of their goods and services (source: EY Future Consumer Index).
To encourage change in the industry, the Fashion Values platform comprises a three-year educational programme including events, insights and a challenge to stimulate sustainable innovation. In a launch film about the project, the programme creators explain: ‘The future of fashion depends on what we value. The future of fashion depends on how we imagine ourselves to be.’
Beyond education, such initiatives are also set to pave the way for future job roles centred on sustainable innovation. These positions will focus on legacy as a key tenet of decision-making, considering the ways that today’s products and services will affect future citizens.

Read the article here

Trends 2: Food’s Fashion Strategy
Fashion is becoming a lucrative strategy for food, drink and dining brands, leading to new revenue streams, collaborations and highlighting brand values.
Following a year of instability and restaurant closures, food and beverage brands have had to innovate to survive.
While local deliveries, meal kits and gift vouchers have helped to boost income, one additional way companies are expanding their product offering is through fashion and apparel.
By releasing garments that celebrate the pleasure of eating, as well as focusing on their impact as taste-makers, food brands and restaurants are using fashion to secure long-term alternative revenue streams, showcase their brand’s ethics and embark on unexpected collaborations. 'If it seems strange that people want to advertise where they get their pizza from, remember we are living in an age of merch… [and] a time when brands are expected to present a three-dimensional face to the world,’ writes Ellie Violet Bramley for The Guardian.

Read the article here

Trend 3: Fashion Rental Market
Fashion rental services are evolving to provide new revenue streams, peer-led style inspiration and convenience that benefits brands and consumers.
Over the past decade, fashion rental services have emerged in the luxury sector as a way to diversify access to products with high price points – spearheaded by platforms such as Rent the Runway and Front Row.
Since then, garment rental has filtered down to high street brands, and more recently into peer-to-peer swaps.
Now, however, cross-sector opportunities are emerging for fashion rental to meet the needs of consumers in a range of lifestyle situations, largely driven by greater acceptance of rental services among Millennials and Generation Z. ‘For the younger generation, the idea of access over ownership is something they fully embrace,' explains Sacha Newall, CEO and co-founder of rental marketplace My Wardrobe HQ.

Read the article here
For more fashion trends for 2022, keep an eye out for our Future Forecast 2022 report launching on December 10th.

What’s next for The Future Laboratory?

We are launching our annual Future Forecast 2022 report in December, featuring 50 essential trends across 10 key sectors. The report will be available on The Future Laboratory shop or free for members of LS:N Global.

We have also just announced the latest expansion of our global network and associated partnerships with LATAM’s prestigious Box 1824, and Germany and Benelux’s The Cronos Group and &Koo that furthers our collective ambitions to become one of the most connected independent foresight networks globally.

Connect with The Future Laboratory

Australian Designer Jordan Dalah chosen as 2022 International Woolmark Prize finalist

Seven of the world’s most promising emerging design talents including Australian Designer Jordan Dalah, have been selected for the 2022 International Woolmark Prize - the world’s original and most prestigious fashion awards and talent development program.


The 2022 International Woolmark Prize finalists are:


In July 2021, hundreds of applications were reviewed by an esteemed panel of industry members and The Woolmark Company to select the seven finalists. 


This year’s program theme, Play, will be a true celebration of forward-thinking design and innovation. Finalists are invited to play and experiment with textiles, design and business practices to drive change and innovation for a brighter future.


Each finalist will receive a AU$60,000 grant for the development of a Merino collection and will be supported by the program’s education and mentoring initiative, the Innovation Academy, which includes mentoring from industry leaders, such as: Gabriella Karefa-Johnson, Stylist & Editor, Holli Rogers, Chief Brand Officer, Farfetch, Sinéad Burke, Educator and Advocate, Sara Sozzani Maino, Head of Vogue Talents, Deputy Director Vogue Italia & Int Brand, Shaway Yeh, Founder YehYehYeh and Group Style Editorial Director Modern Media Group and Tim Blanks, Editor-at-Large, Business of Fashion.


The Awards

The seven finalists will present a Merino wool collection for Autumn/Winter 2022 highlighting transparency throughout their supply chain and, alongside partner Common Objective, will build a sustainability roadmap. The winners will be selected by a prestigious panel of industry experts, to be announced, in April 2022.


One finalist will be awarded the International Woolmark Prize and receive AU$200,000 to invest in the development of their business. The Karl Lagerfeld Award for Innovation will be awarded to another finalist, with the winner receiving AU$100,000. The Woolmark Supply Chain Award will also be presented, celebrating outstanding contribution from a trade partner driving wool supply chain innovation.


About The Woolmark Company:

The Woolmark Company is the global authority on wool. Through our extensive network of relationships spanning the international textile and fashion industries, we highlight Australian wool’s position as the ultimate natural fibre and premier ingredient in luxury apparel.


The Woolmark logo is one of the world’s most recognised and respected brands, providing assurance of the highest quality, and representing pioneering excellence and innovation from farm through to finished product.


The Woolmark Company is a subsidiary of Australian Wool Innovation, a not-for-profit enterprise that conducts research, development and marketing along the worldwide supply chain for Australian wool on behalf of about 60,000 woolgrowers that help fund the company.


GDPR Compliance for selling online in Europe | Marque Lawyers

The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a regulation in European law designed to protect the personal data of individuals in the European Union. Its primary aim is to give individuals protection, rights of control over and access to their data held by entities both within and outside the EU. 


Produced by AFC Patron Member Marque Lawyers, AFC Members have access to the GDPR Compliance Checklist located in the Business Toolkit - View here


What is the GDPR

Its full title is the General Data Protection Regulation, and it is a set of rules governing the collection, use and disclosure of personal data of people residing in the EU. It is certainly the most strict set of privacy laws worldwide, and is quickly becoming the benchmark for businesses operating internationally.


But I’m an Australian business, does it apply to me?

Possibly. Unlike Australian privacy law, the test of whether a business is bound by the GDPR is based on the location of its customers, not the location of the business.

If you satisfy any of these three tests you will be bound:


  1. 1. A presence in the EU. If you have an office or stores in any EU country;


  1. 2. Offer goods or services to people in the EU. This is the test which causes the most angst. There are a few issues to consider here, the mere fact that people in the EU can purchase your product online is not enough to make you bound. Instead, the regulator will look at whether you target customers in the EU, which could include enabling payment in EU currencies, having EU language versions of your website, and engaging with advertising targeted at people in the EU; or


  1. 3. Monitoring the behaviour of individuals in the EU. This includes tracking the online behaviour of customers in the EU who visit your website via cookies.


Also, there is no turnover threshold – businesses of any size will be caught. Australian businesses are only bound by the privacy laws here once their turnover exceeds $3 million, so many Australian brands find themselves needing to comply with the GDPR while not having any privacy obligations at home.


How do I comply?

Overall, the rules are quite similar to those in Australia, but just more extreme. There are more strict IT security measures, methods of obtaining consent from customers to use their data, record keeping obligations, and quite specific contractual obligations which must be in place with suppliers who you might disclose personal data to.


You may also be required to appoint a person to act as your representative in the EU.


The data breach reporting obligations are much stricter than in Australia, and you will generally have to report a data breach to the regulator (and the individuals affected) within 72 hours of becoming aware of the breach. You need to have internal procedures in place to assess and manage data breaches.


Your privacy policy will also need some tweaks to be GDPR compliant.


Also, customers have much stronger rights to tell you what to do with your information. This includes a right to be forgotten (with some exceptions) – if a customer requests it, you must delete all the data you have on them.


What are the consequences if I am in breach?

 Severe. The maximum fine a business can face for breaching the GDPR is EUR 20 million or 4% of turnover (whichever is greater).


Google is currently the gold medal holder for largest GDPR fine – in 2019 it was hit with a EUR 50 million fine for not seeking proper consent to use customers’ data for targeting advertising.


Does it also apply in the UK post Brexit?

 Basically, yes. While technically not the GDPR anymore, the UK adopted all of the rules of GDPR as their own domestic laws post Brexit.



 The GDPR is a pain, but compliance is manageable.

Enhancing supply chains, manufacturing processes and product quality | Sourcing by Design

Sourcing By Design (SBD) is a boutique fashion sourcing and design agency, collaborating with both Australian and international brands, aiming to enhance their aesthetic, expand product categories and grow their business. With dedicated teams in Brisbane, China and Hong Kong, SBD works across all categories including womenswear, menswear, childrenswear, accessories and lifestyle products in the contemporary and luxury markets.



Can you tell us about a brand that you have worked with and how you helped them improve their supply chain, sourcing and manufacturing processes? 

As a fashion sourcing and design agency, assisting our clients to enhance their supply chain, manufacturing processes and product quality is at the heart of what we do. In our earlier years when founding Director Katie Macdonald was based in Hong Kong, SBD was approached by one of our now long-standing clients to assist with their production. At the time of enquiry, the brand was producing in Bali and experiencing inconsistent quality and unreliable delivery timeframes that were difficult to manage. 


To help the brand achieve better quality and more certainty in delivery, SBD was able to facilitate a new relationship for the brand in China from our existing network of reliable factories. While manufacturing continued in Bali, SBD coordinated new product development and commenced production with the new supplier. For the brand, an increase in minimum order quantities (MOQs) was a necessary investment, however the supplier’s in house technical capabilities and quality control, coupled with SBD’s effective communication and pre-shipment inspections quickly resulted in a higher quality product and delivery of orders within the agreed schedule.  


As the brand’s agent, SBD formed a strong relationship with the new suppliers in China. After a few years, the brand’s confidence in the new supplier was certain, enabling them to completely shift their manufacturing from Bali to China. The brand has significantly benefited from these relationships and experienced considerable growth in recent years having developed a reputation for a high quality product and confidence with their customer base. Product development is now a more collaborative process between the brand, SBD and the supplier and open communication has allowed for sharing of information in relation to trends, material sourcing and availability and most importantly, resolving any complications that may arise. 



What advice did you provide the brand on creating a transparent and sustainable supply chain?

With a focus on sustainability in recent years, the brand engaged SBD to assist them with improving the social and environmental impacts and transparency in their supply chain.  While SBD’s initial enquiries in the market resulted in many barriers such as green washing, false claims and band-aid solutions, perseverance in researching and educating in this space has proven critical in SBD finding suppliers who are aligned with the brand’s values. By committing to only working with suppliers that share the same sustainable goals, SBD has been successful in implementing improvements for the brand in raw material sourcing, manufacturing, operations and packaging. The brand is now using raw materials from reliable sources including suppliers licensed by Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and Leather Working Group (LWG), has achieved full transparency to tier 3 in their supply chain and working with manufacturers agreeable to regular social and environmental audits in alignment with SEDEX. They are also excited to be launching their new sustainably sourced and designed packaging this season. 


As experienced by this brand, it can be overwhelming to know where to start when setting out to create a transparent and sustainable supply chain. With all the information available in this space it can be difficult to pinpoint what will add value to your brand. For any size business, mapping out your supply chain and assessing each tier is the best place to start. 


Look at the pros and cons of each element and identify any gaps in information. Areas that need attention or the ‘low hanging fruit’ will normally become visible in this process and any improvements implemented will make an impact to the business. It is important to remember that it is a continual journey, one that needs regular review and adjusting or refining your goals. With this in mind, set immediate tangible goals for improvement and also long term strategic goals to be reviewed as your brand grows.


As SBD work with more brands from differing product categories, we also continue to learn about new innovations and furthering our own network of manufacturing and raw material suppliers. The continued growth of our existing clients has been a pleasure to watch, particularly in this difficult economic environment and we are excited to welcome new brands to SBD to assist them on their journey.


What is Sourcing By Design offering AFC Members?

If you are a brand who needs collaborative design and development support, supplier sourcing or production assistance, we invite Australian Fashion Council members to a complimentary half hour consultation with Director Katie Macdonald to learn more about our services. Should you choose to proceed with our services, SBD will take 10% off the cost of our services for 6 months. We welcome you to get in touch.

Connect with Sourcing by Design



Meet Jordan Gogos | Founder and designer of Iordanes Spyridon Gogos


Sydney based designer and AFC Member Jordan Gogos debuted his namesake brand at AAFW 2021. The highly anticipated event saw ‘wearable art’ and structural pieces featuring bold colours, eclectic prints and a diverse range of models walk the runway amongst painted objects designed in collaboration with 25 different artists, creatives and brands. We spoke to Jordan about his experience at AAFW and what’s next for the brand.




Can you tell us about your background and how Iordanes Spyridon Gogos came to be?

I started ISG as an experimental brand when I got back from NYC. I had been working solely on my furniture brand, GOGOS for three years - mainly within fashion contexts. The objects were constantly on set, in still life shots, in concept stores. The pieces were almost like their own fashion label. With COVID lockdowns and no access to machinery or storage, I was hyper aware of the buzz that circulates the fashion industry, so I thought if I make a logo and a website with these articles of mainly painted clothing I was making at the time, what will the response be? My first iteration of the brand name was Jordan Gogos, but I felt removing my Anglo-Saxon name out of it, and presenting my Greek name would show the shift in the practice from individual to brand.


Iordanes Spyridon Gogos By Jamie Heath


What does ‘Australian’ Fashion & Design mean to you?

Centring indigenous/ First Nation fashion first and foremost. Second to that, Australian fashion is interchangeable and has moved into a space that has little firm fixtures! “Resort” collections came about as a solution to clarifying what collections season is if it’s not SS/AW… we’re seeing classified design fade away, and an absolute freedom in having opposite seasons to the rest of the world. We’re catering towards a global audience as we can release a bikini and knit in one show, so there’s really something for everyone across the world. There’s no one who understands, more than Australian’s the frustration of wanting to buy shorts in summer and only winter collections are available at your go-to brand. This is definitely translating on the runway, in installations, on the street, on social media - we’re making it up as we go along and it’s a hell of a lot more fun!


Iordanes Spyridon Gogos by Jamie Heath


Can you tell us about the experience of presenting at AAFW 2021? What was the biggest obstacle you faced and how did you overcome it? 

The brand really became, ‘a brand’, at Afterpay AustralianFashion Week. It was the most exciting thing to build a show gradually without mood-boards, without anything to show collaborators and the team. The biggest obstacle was definitely pitching the brand to partners, stakeholders and collaborators to be involved without any precedent. A brand that is so hands-on, and dare I say “arty” always does have a bit of a risk factor attached to it - how far will they go, is it just frayed edges and raw seams? Pushing the boundaries to show what we’re able to achieve was the most rewarding thing.


Iordanes Spyridon Gogos by Jamie Heath


What’s next for Iordanes Spyridon Gogos? Any exciting projects in the pipeline? 

More than ever! Our Melbourne Fashion Week install launched last week. I'm a part of Melbourne Art Fair as a brand ambassador and will be doing a bar with Glenfiddich whisky… I think that’s all I can say!? We’re venturing into all sorts of things fashion, non-fashion… the brand has become a vessel to access new and exciting things for everyone involved in ISG, so it’s all new to us and we’re grabbing the bull by the horns and running with it!


Images by Jamie Heath 

Connect with Iordanes Spyridon Gogos


Home to four of Australia’s top emerging designers | Edit Collection

On Wednesday, November 10th 2021 the AFC, in collaboration with Vicinity Centres and Afterpay, officially launched Edit Collection. The experiential retail space leveraging new technologies will host four of Australia’s top emerging brands over the next 10 months.


Bondi Born, My General Store, First Nations Fashion & Design and Esse Studios were selected for Edit Collection based on the criteria of sustainability, mindful creativity, innovation, diversity and inclusivity, as well as their ability to celebrate Australian fashion and culture.


The Edited Collection store interior


The store launch hosted at Chatswood Chase saw industry, media and the creatives behind the brands come together to celebrate a moment that felt victorious after enduring months of restrictions and lockdowns. The brightly coloured designs from Bondi Born popped against the store's futuristic, sleek interiors designed by Sydney-based art director Kyle Jonsson.


With sustainability being a major consideration in the selection process, founder Dale McCarthy and creative director Karla Clarke of swimwear and resort label, Bondi Born, spoke to Vogue Australia on the importance of sustainability within the fashion industry and how the opening of the store marks a turning point for Australian Fashion. 


“These are crazy times, Covid has disrupted supply chains, up-ended retail businesses, and moved people’s shopping habits online. Only recently, world leaders have sat up and realised we all need to do something about climate change.”

“But I hope there is a movement towards a more considered fashion, where consumers realise that fast fashion, at ‘those’ prices, means that people and the planet are being greatly compromised in the process of their creation and the waste they create.”


Bondi Born in Edit Collection


The store is fitted out with hangers made from upcycled marine plastics, ocean bound plastics and post-consumer plastics supplied by Arch & Hook and brands are supported with education resources from experts in merchandise planning, SMART IN PLANNING plus human resource training from UMENCO.


Arch & Hook recycled hangers at Edit Collection


Louisa Galligani from Afterpay hosted a Q&A session with Kellie Hush from the AFC, Kirsty Ghahramani from Afterpay and Corrine Barchanowicz from Vicinity Centres discussing the benefits of omni-channel retailing and embracing new technologies in physical locations.


Louisa Galligani, Kellie Hush, Kirsty Ghahramani and Corrine Barchanowicz at Edit Collection


The store debuted eTale in Australia, the developers of a Bluetooth chip tag that allows each product in store to be tracked in real time. The chips communicate with Smart Mirrors, allowing customers to browse alternative and related products, and use the gesture-controlled screens to shoot and share selfies from the fitting room. The chips immediately deliver analytics to the brand on the most engaged, most tried and most sold pieces so they can make data-driven decisions on merchandising, VM and more.


You can now shop Bondi Born in store, with the 2022 program launching with My General Store, First Nations Fashion + Design and Esse Studios.


Store Location:

Shop L131, Level 1, Chatswood Chase, 345 Victoria Avenue, Chatswood NSW 2067


Image credit: Jessica Wong from One Green Bean

Retail Solutions with Pop up on Demand

Pop up on Demand helps both online and offline brands set up their physical retail spaces. With the goal of making retail easy for everyone, they can supply POS, staffing, marketing and space to help you succeed and champion your retail experience.


Runaway the label, a Sydney based brand needed a solution for their 3 month pop up at Robina Town Centre in Queensland. Pop up on demand was engaged to provide a quick solution as they were taking a vacant Forever New store and needed to be trading in 2 weeks.
Pop up plans were formulated on Tuesday with agreements signed on Friday. We managed to set up the store on the following Tuesday with the pop up opening on Thursday within two weeks of plans being approved.
We provided a turn key pop up solution that featured clothing racks, display tables and a mobile POS terminal and since all of Pop up on demand furniture has been pre-approved by the major shopping centre groups in Australia, we were able to get everything done very quickly without wasting time on approvals.
Runaway the label pop up was so successful that they extended it for another 3 months.

Any exciting developments, collaborations or events in the pipeline you would like to highlight to our community?

As we start to reopen in the major retail centres of Victoria and NSW, there will be significant opportunities, in both the supply, and demand side for pop up retailing.
Many pure-play online retailers have grown up during COVID-19 and now need to test and try out physical markets with an affordable yet high quality model. There is also a lot of high quality furniture, already pre approved by landlords, that can be collected, sorted and then reused from vacant sites and stores to allow demand to meet supply!
The run into Christmas will be very exciting this year and Pop Up on Demand is working with retailers and shopping centres to recycle and repurpose unused store furniture, so that other retailers can use it to develop their own businesses quickly and cost effectively. Currently this unused furniture, estimated at over 50,000 tonnes per year, will end up in skips at the back of centres and then, sadly, often in landfill.

AFC Member offer:

AFC members receive 10% off our Pop up solution if they book for more than 4 weeks in VIC and NSW

Connect with Pop up on Demand:

Applications are open for Recycling Victoria grants to support circular projects and prevent waste | Sustainability Victoria

Sustainability Victoria has recently released round two of the Recycling Victoria Innovation Fund. These grants seek to support circular projects that prevent waste in the make or use phase of a resource's lifecycle.

This means it focuses on upstream innovations in design, production, distribution and consumption instead of downstream interventions like recycling.

Applications are due on Monday 15 November.
The projects must:

- Be delivered by a collaborative partnership

- Be innovative (have never been done in Victoria before)

- Explore, test or demonstrate solutions that prevent waste in the make phase or the use phase of a resource lifecycle.


The fund will award grants across 2 streams:

Stream 1:
Grants between $75,000 and $150,000 per project
Textiles innovation focuses on circular solutions that prevent textile waste.
Stream 2:
Grants between $150,000 and $250,000 per project
Collaborative innovation focuses on circular solutions that prevent waste from multiple organisations in a specific supply chain, sector or region.
An information session around the fund was held recently - watch it here


To apply for the Recycling Victoria Innovation Fund click here

Showroom-X take #WeWearAustralian campaign global

Building on the success of the second annual #WeWearAustralian campaign, Showroom-X has collaborated with renowned international creative director Ken Leung on a fashion campaign aimed at promoting Australian fashion and iconic Western Australia's Kimberley region to the rest of the world with thanks to the WA Government, through Tourism WA.


We Wear Australian Campaign

Created to unite and bolster the Australian Fashion industry during COVID-19 and, in turn, support vulnerable local communities, #WeWearAustralian was launched in 2020 as a rallying call to all consumers to invest in Australian designers and brands at a time they needed it most. In 2020, the #WeWearAustralian campaign helped drive over $3 million in retail sales amongst participating brands.

Showroom-X Creative Director and Co-Founder Kelly Atkinsion said:


“Richard and I met Ken after he arrived in Perth with his family for a holiday last year. Lucky for us, Ken decided to extend his stay in WA. Taking the We Wear Australian campaign to the rest of the world seemed like the obvious next step.

“There is no hiding the fact that the Australian fashion industry is hurting with many brands and retailers finding themselves with excess stock. Through this extension of the We Wear Australian campaign, we are creating a platform for Australian brands to ship directly to the rest of the world and promote our incredible industry globally through a series of breathtakingly powerful images shot in some of the most otherworldly and wild locations on the planet.

“We have been blown away by the generosity of everyone coming together donating their time & energy to bring this campaign to life. It is a true industry collaboration. Particular thanks to the team at Tourism WA.”

We Wear Australian Campaign


Ken Leung adds:

“Returning to Perth after 20 years of living abroad and working for global fashion brands, I’m excited to use my creativity and experience to support Australian labels through my new agency Studio PARÁDISÔ.

“I’m grateful for the opportunity to concept the #WeWearAustralian campaign which captures the freedom and youthful energy of a group of friends as they explore breathtaking West Australian landscapes.

“I’ve curated a collective of exciting WA photographers and filmmakers to capture these joyful, uplifting moments in their own way and share the raw beauty of our state with the world.”

“The striking contrast of red pindan cliffs, white sand beaches and vivid turquoise waters around Broome, plus abundance of freshwater and ancient geological textures near Kununurra created the perfect backdrops for this campaign”

We Wear Australian campaignWe Wear Australian Campaign


The #WeWearAustralian campaign was captured by James Giles, Claire Hart and Justin Griffiths and features local talent including: Naomi Stevens, India Anderson-Prentice, William Kalimba, Angus Minear and from the NT Cindy Rostron.

Locations included: Gantheaume Point, Reddell Beach, Cable Beach and Crab Creek on Yawuru Country, Lake Argyle on Miriwoong Country, and Mirima National Park on Miriwoong Country.

#WeWearAustralian works with purpose-driven organisation Thread Together who works to restore dignity and hope for every Australian and drive meaningful social, environmental and community change by rescuing clothes destined for landfill and redirecting them to those in need.

To participate in #WeWearAustralian and help wardrobe over 10,000 people in need, participating brands were asked to make a tax-deductible financial donation or pledge of product (or both) to Thread Together, so the movement becomes fully circular in its approach.


Visit the #WeWearAustralian Website

For more information and media enquiries please contact Gabriella Somervaille at

Join the AFC team | Applications open for Fashion & Textile Industry Relations Manager

Fashion & Textile Industry Relations Manager

Location: Sydney, Australia
Contract: 3-4 days depending on experience


The AFC is the peak industry body for the Australian Fashion & Textile industry. As a not-for-profit membership organisation, our members are drawn from across the entire fashion and textile ecosystem. Our unique position is in connecting critical stakeholders across an industry that contributes $27.2 billion to the Australian economy, allowing us to effectively champion an innovative, resilient and sustainable legacy for the industry. With a 77% female workforce, our industry is paramount to creating a secure economic future for women. Through collaboration and leadership, the AFC provides the resources, support and tools to enable our industry to continue to evolve and thrive. We advocate for our industry at the tables that matter.



As the Fashion & Textiles Industry Relations Manager,  your primary role will be to grow nationwide membership, connect with industry to curate innovative content strategies for the membership program, and to develop collaborative partnerships that deliver projects that align with the AFCs strategic initiatives, its values and ultimately the goal of a mindful and resilient industry.

Working across emerging brand programs such as Edit Collection, Fash Tech development programs such as AFC Virtual, and other AFC sustainability, circularity, advanced manufacturing and fashion technology initiatives, this role is wide and varied in its engagement with key industry players. There are many major strategic projects on the horizon such as the Australian Fashion Brand project that will require someone with vision, enthusiasm and out of the box thinking to truly optimise the opportunities for industry.

You will be the first point of call for industry members, keeping your finger on the pulse of industry from designers and manufacturers, creative services, media and PR as well as government entities and ancillary business services that contribute to our industry ecosystem.

This full-time role reports directly to the Head of Marketing & Communications, however you will work closely with the CEO to facilitate AFC programs, events and resources that reflect the needs of AFC members. As the AFC is a small organisation, all team members are required to support each other and adapt to working in an agile environment. You will be based between a shared office space in Sydney and working from home.

This is a really exciting role within a growing & dynamic organisation that values the development of its team. The workplace culture at the AFC focuses on collaboration, proactivity and positivity, and the AFC actively encourages a healthy life-work balance by offering flexible working arrangements. Achievements and successes are celebrated within the AFC team, and the right candidate will be rewarded with a nurturing, relaxed yet professional environment that values skill and career development.



Member Engagement

● Identifying & targeting potential members through direct outreach and 1:1 meetings, to drive new member acquisition and always have your finger on the pulse of industry.

● Working with the Marketing & Communications team to support member acquisition, retention and engagement campaigns that enrich the AFC membership. Be the first point of call for member liaison, exploring member opportunities and resolving issues.

● Manage the Administration Assistant to answer membership enquiries, follow up on leads and problem-solve member concerns and queries.

● Working with the CEO and Head of Marketing & Communications, you will provide a lens on the ‘member journey’ and suggest improvements to the member experience.


Partner Engagement

● Building relationships with key partners to develop a collaborative program that delivers a high level of service and positive engagement with the AFC.

● Developing & executing existing partner projects in line with timeline and budget obligations.

● Coordinating partnership proposals, MOU’s, agreements, presentations and project reports.

● Effective and diplomatic communication with partners to maintain relationships - through planning, update meetings and proposing new creative ideas.

● Work with external consultants to drive new partnership strategies, planning and tailored partner proposals.

● Monitoring and researching partnership activity to pinpoint new opportunities.

● Work alongside Marketing & Comms to deliver engaging partner content, resources and events.



● Prepare weekly feedback reports for the CEO and AFC team. Feedback should be constructive, solution driven and be helpful to the development of the AFC’s member program and partner projects.

● Develop action plans to address key performance areas and improve projects.

● Attending conferences, meetings, and industry events.

● Ad hoc tasks as required.



Qualifications and Experience

● Tertiary qualifications in fashion, textiles, design, communications or business related field.

● 2- 3 years experience within a not-for-profit or similar peak body organisation, or within the fashion and textiles industry.


Knowledge & Skills

● Active interest and sound knowledge of the Australian fashion and textiles industry.

● Highly driven and results focused person with a positive and creative approach and strong work ethic.

● Diligent and conscientious with ability to follow-through on all details, whilst maintaining the bigger picture of the industry.

● Excellent relationship development skills and ability to connect, engage and build strong relationships with our members and stakeholders.

● You thrive in an environment where change is a constant and take ownership of your area of responsibility.

● The ability to influence, communicate and negotiate with stakeholders.

● A team player who is organised and able to effectively prioritise workloads.

● Strategic in approach to long term negotiations and planning.

● Ability to work independently.

● Strong verbal and written communication skills.

● Sound experience using Zoom, GSuite or Office suite.


Behaviours & Attributes

● Solutions focused when it comes to solving problems.

● Self motivated and proactive.Strong attention to detail.

● Act with honesty and integrity in everything you do.

● Goal oriented and results driven.

● A friendly and engaging personality.

● Share the AFC’s values and vision.


It would be an advantage to have:

● Experience in developing and securing partnerships.

● Strong existing relationships with fashion and textile industry members.

● Experience in developing grant proposals, managing grant requirements and acquittal reporting.

● Project management and client relationship experience.

● Working knowledge of CRM systems and/or project management SaaS software.



To put yourself forward for this fantastic opportunity please submit the following documents:

● Your Cover letter which addresses why you would like to work for the AFC

● Your CV

Send your application to Prue Thomas at, with the subject line “Application for Fashion & Textiles Industry Relations Manager”.

How Export Finance Australia helps Australian fashion businesses with finance solutions to pivot and grow.

Export Finance Australia provides financing solutions to support Australian fashion brands and businesses, including businesses within an export-related supply chain that benefits the Australian economy.

Are you navigating unexpected challenges such as shipment problems, payment difficulties or business interruptions and are unable to secure finance with your private financier? Export Finance Australia may be able to provide financial support.

Through loans, bonds and guarantees, Export Finance Australia has supported Australian exporters for more than 60 years and now more than ever, the team is available to support Australian businesses diversify in a changing world.

Helping an Australian Fashion brand finance production with a Small Business Export Loan

After beginning as a wholesale business with an international agency, this Australian Fashion brand changed its business model in 2012 to become a fully Australian vertical retail business. In just over a decade, the company has grown its retail presence locally from one store in Noosa, Queensland to more than 20 stores across Australia, including an online platform.

They now have a bricks and mortar store in New Zealand, and an international wholesale business in addition to its multi-site retail presence in Australia.

The company’s outstanding reputation meant the brand was also successful in getting high-end international retailers like Nordstrom, Moda Operandi and Harvey Nichols to stock its range. However, to meet these overseas orders, they needed to pay for the production of all its garments upfront – negatively impacting cash flow on their Australian business.

This company reached out to Export Finance Australia to help finance its international production invoices.

Export Finance Australia provided them with an AUD$350,000 Small Business Export Loan to ensure the cash flow of its Australian business was uninterrupted and they could fulfil their export orders. This enabled them to strengthen relationships with existing buyers and reach new customers in the USA, UK and Asia.

Helping businesses diversify

Facing market challenges and disruptions in the past year, many exporters have sought to diversify into new markets. Whether your business is looking to adapt to a changing market, pivot to seize new opportunities or grow internationally, Export Finance Australia’s experienced team is available to support businesses to diversify in a changing world.

They could support your business to diversify with:

Working Capital Support – To finance against supplier invoices or international purchase orders

Capital investment - To purchase new equipment and expand your export operations

International expansion - To establish or grow your business operations internationally

Online Growth - To invest in e-commerce and grow your sales to international customers


For more information, get in touch on 1800 093 724 or visit their website.

People focussed recruiting | iDA Australia

Fashion is in a constant state of flux, which can create many challenges for growing retail brands. iDA Australia aims to offer genuine solutions for businesses by providing people-focused services from recruitment, temp staff hire and cross border recruitment as well as pop-up store operations. iDA is a top tier solution provider specialising in the ever-changing retail industry across Asia Pacific countries.

iDA has been growing by recruiting and supporting exceptional professionals since 1999. They now have over 10,000 employees and 1,000+ clients in Fashion and Beauty.

Internationally supporting Human Resources for fashion brands, iDA Australia expanded to APAC in 2018, including Australia, Singapore, Taiwan and Vietnam.

‘WORKING DREAM’ is their commitment to ensure that they are here for people to pursue their dreams and the power that brings joy to people. iDA Australia's goal is to stimulate and enhance the excitement about the future of the fashion industry as well as increase business value in the Australian retail industry.

We spoke to the team at iDA Australia about how they are assisting retail businesses to navigate the re-opening of retail in Australia and how businesses should be approaching their recruitment strategy coming into the Christmas retail season.

How is iDA Australia working to support retail businesses through the impacts of Covid-19?

Due to the difficulty in finding sales assistants with border closures and restrictions, iDA Australia has developed a flat-rate recruitment service to support retail businesses. The flat-rate recruitment service provides HR services inclusive of job posting, screening, interviewing to checking candidates’ legal resident status. This allows management staff to concentrate on customer experiences and retail operations with the new rules and regulations in place.

Working within the industries move towards more digital avenues, they have also reconstructed their online training and education courses that provide staff online modules which are accessible 24/7, with options for lecturer led training sessions where on completion the candidate will receive a course certificate.

Once lockdowns and restrictions have eased, how should retail businesses be tackling the recruitment of staff for the coming shopping season?

There will be challenges to meet appropriate staffing numbers towards the holiday season with the usual hiring process unable to be rolled out due to restrictions in place. iDA recommends that businesses deliver clear messaging around prospective candidates to ensure applicants match the requirements needed for the job.

With increasing demand and competition of hiring great sales assistants, starting the hiring process early and looking for candidates that can contribute to long-term business success will be key to re-developing your businesses face to face retail.

iDA Australia provides their ‘Temp to Hire’ service where businesses can try out new candidates for three to six months before locking in an employment contract. This option takes out the stress and preparation required by employers when hiring new staff whilst also allowing both parties to determine whether the placement is the right fit. iDA will support both sides during the temp period and support areas of concern to ensure both employer and employee are satisfied.

AFC Member Offer

- One complementary recruitment offer for the first inquiry through the iDA service web page.

- For all the other inquiries, a 10% discount for the first recruitment until the end of 2021.


AFC members can access these offers by logging into the Member Portal and navigating to the
Member Perks page.

Connect with iDA Australia



Last call for Sustainable Fashion 101 | Wardrobe Crisis Academy free for AFC members.

AFC members gain free access to Wardrobe Crisis Academy: Sustainable Fashion 101 until December 2021.

Join the last term of Wardrobe Crisis Academy: Sustainable Fashion 101, beginning November 1st and concluding early December.
Joined by international industry experts, Clare Press takes the role of instructor to teach this six week course with core themes of workers, environment, materials and waste. With lessons published weekly, the study is self-paced, and designed to take approximately 3 hours per week. The course concludes early December.

There will also be 2 bonus live Zoom sessions facilitated by Clare Press, on 16th & 30th, November 2021.

Over 450 students have been through the Wardrobe Crisis Academy program since it launched in May. This is the perfect opportunity for you and your team members to upskill on the sustainability basics.
“Such an informative course for anyone wanting to learn more about the sustainable fashion business. I highly recommend accessing this not-to-be-missed opportunity to learn direct from Clare Press, surrounded by a community of like-minded people.” - Courtney Holm, founder A.BCH
Run, don't walk - this offer is ahead of the expiration of free AFC member access to the course on the 31st of December 2021. Members must claim this offer by November 1st, 2021.

Claim your limited-edition 100% off discount by emailing
Connect with Wardrobe Crisis Academy:



Labelling guide & Standards Toolkit

The AFC’s Labelling Toolkit is your one stop guide for information about care labelling for clothing and textiles. Find out what information you need to include, what is required by law and for exporting, and why it’s important for consumers.

Australian standards, labelling law and guidelines assists consumers in the purchasing of fashion & textile products. For Australian fashion & textile products, there are several requirements that need to be observed and maintained. AFC Members have exclusive access to our Standards and Labelling Toolkit where you can find out about what requirements your business needs to follow when labelling your clothing, garments, apparel and textiles.

With consumers increasing interest in sustainability, the information brands are expected to provide now extends past the size but where it was made and what it is made of. By law, there are certain parts of information that must be included in order to sell and export garments.

This toolkit will cover:

1. Country of origin labelling

2. Fibre content labelling

3. Clothing sizing labelling

4. Environmental labelling


AFC Members can access this resource from the Toolkits page here.

Business in Fashion Toolkits | Olvera Advisors

Produced by our Affiliate Partner Olvera Advisors, this Business in Fashion Toolkit supports industry players who are looking to upskill their knowledge on the in’s and out’s of starting, maintaining and operating a healthy fashion business.

Launching in phases, this toolkit aims to support and educate AFC members on making informed business decisions, provides guidance on business structure and covers common issues that arise when starting your own business such as director duties, trademarking, finance management and industry benchmarks.

These modules are available exclusively for AFC Members and can be accessed via the AFC Toolkits. Read more about the modules available below.

Module One:
Starting up a business

Module Two:
Financial Statements

Module Three:
Cash Management

Module Four:
Internal Control

Connect with Olvera Advisors

Website | Linkedin | Facebook

Creating a safe, respectful and inclusive workplace | Red Wagon

AFC Affiliate partner, Red Wagon Workplace Solutions have created this Workplace Self Assessment Toolkit to help you create a safe and respectful workplace and improve workplace culture.

Positive workplace culture ensures that your employees are safe and supported in a workplace that does not tolerate bullying, harassment or discrimination. In 2018, sexual harassment at work, for example, was estimated to cost Australian businesses $3.8 billion through staff turnover and loss of productivity. It is in the best interests of your employees, and the organisation, to impart a positive workplace culture.

This toolkit not only highlights whether improvements to a workplace culture need to be made but also maps out workable solutions to create a positive working environment.

AFC Members can access the toolkit here.

While it’s suitable for most workplaces, contact Red Wagon for further tailored advice.

How can businesses support their employees during times of disruption?

Times of extreme disruption, like we are experiencing through the COVID-19 pandemic, means that employees and employers are experiencing higher than normal stress levels which in turn affects mental health. Poor mental health has negative impacts on a number of aspects of a persons’ life including their productivity and quality of work. It’s important to continue checking in with staff with regular and open communication to monitor employee wellbeing and create strategies to monitor, respond to and support wellbeing.

How can businesses support their employees whilst working from home?

Working from home looks different for everybody. Not only ensuring that your staff have adequate resources to carry out their regular tasks, but that there are support systems in place for professional development and mental/emotional support (such as Employee Assistance Programs) will make your staff feel valued.

How should businesses navigate going back to a more ‘normal’ working environment?

The work environment, and the way in which we interact with each other, is unlikely to look like it did pre-Covid. In planning a return to the office, business should accommodate reasonable safety and hygiene practices such as making allowances for distancing, more frequent cleaning schedules and sanitising. Understanding that each individual will have different levels of comfort and concern with returning to the office, and being considerate and taking those circumstances into consideration is really important.

Member offer

- 10% off specific services such as diagnostic audits and complaints management subscription.

- A complimentary general HR consultation.


Connect with Red Wagon
Website | Linkedin

Modern Slavery Checklist | Fioro Legal

The AFC’s High Fashion to High Vis report revealed that the Australian fashion industry contributed over $27.2 billion to the Australian economy. It is therefore unsurprising that the industry is subject to significant regulatory controls, particularly in relation to exports and imports.

One key regulatory area which has gained significant focus in recent years is modern slavery, with changes including the introduction of a new legislative regime and increased reporting obligations. Modern slavery can take many forms, including debt bondage, where a worker is forced to work for free to pay off a debt, child slavery, forced marriage, domestic servitude and forced labour governed by violence and intimidation.

Modern slavery affects more than 40.3 million people across the world, with the fashion and textiles industries frequently contributing to the issue, often without their knowledge and/or seemingly beyond their control. Whilst the Australian fashion industry has an increased focus on sustainability, home-grown textiles and workers, and despite customers increasingly seeking out “conscience driven” businesses, many big players in the market are continuing to reap cost benefits from “turning a blind eye” to modern slavery practices abroad. The introduction of the modern slavery regime is intended to bring the issue out of the shadows by requiring certain businesses to identify key areas of risk for modern slavery in their supply chains, with the overriding intention being a shake-up of industry culture and the progressive elimination of modern slavery.

The new modern slavery regime imposes extensive obligations on businesses with a consolidated annual turnover of at least $100 million to identify suppliers and areas of risk within their supply chains and to report on the mechanisms they are implementing to mitigate instances of modern slavery in their supply chain. Such businesses are required to prepare and submit modern slavery statements reporting on these issues. However, even if you are not an entity which needs to report, you will likely supply to such an entity and you will be ever-increasingly asked to provide information to them on the issues they need to report on. Further, reporting obligations aside, adopting practices which aim to eliminate modern slavery is a moral obligation on all businesses and simply the right thing to do, with sustainability and social conscience becoming key pillars of many leading brands.

Our Modern Slavery Checklist is the first step that you can take in assessing your business’ modern slavery knowledge and maturity. It will help you identify areas of your business in which you are managing modern slavery risks well, and areas which might benefit from improved compliance processes or enhanced focus on sustainability.

AFC Members can access The Modern Slavery Checklist here.

About Fioro Legal:

Fioro Legal is a boutique law firm in Sydney which advises on a broad range of commercial matters, including regulatory compliance. We have prepared a robust six-step compliance program to assist businesses within the fashion and textiles industry to assess their modern slavery risks and obligations. We assist clients to map their supply chains and conduct risk assessments to allocate risk levels across their supply chain. This assists businesses to identify gaps they may have in their supplier onboarding procedures and to develop procedures to identify risk of modern slavery at the earliest of stages. We also assist businesses to navigate modern slavery provisions which are becoming common in supply agreements, to develop training programs to educate personnel at all levels of the business on modern slavery risks and, finally, to prepare their modern slavery statement (where they meet the relevant revenue threshold).

Importantly, where instances of modern slavery are identified within a supply chain, Fioro Legal works with businesses to educate such suppliers. This is because the focus is not on immediately cutting ties with such suppliers (which could result in worse conditions for the impacted workers), but rather to assist them in developing procedures to eliminate modern slavery risks in order to remain part of your supply chain.

Fioro Legal also advises businesses who do not meet the $100 million annual turnover threshold. This is because the purpose of the modern slavery regime is to encourage a culture of compliance and increased modern slavery awareness, regardless of whether an entity is subject to specific reporting obligations. Businesses may also find themselves having to provide relevant data and information to entities upstream in their supply chain who are required to report. Having clear processes and procedures in place makes delivering such information smoother, enhancing relations and reputation with upstream suppliers.

Member Offer:

We offer a FREE 1-hour business check-up and a subsequent 30-minute follow-up for AFC members to help them better understand the modern slavery regime, how to identify their operations and supply chain and to provide initial guidance on how to improve their regulatory compliance processes. We can also discuss your broader regulatory requirements, whether that be sustainability more generally, privacy, whistleblowing, general corporate governance (such as Board procedures), financial services or other regulation.

We also offer a 5% discount on our outsourced legal counsel services, which are intended to provide ongoing legal expertise to your business without the overhead of employing a full-time legal counsel, or 10% off our legal precedent packages, which include template modern slavery clauses for your agreements, template supply agreements and business policies to address modern slavery or other regulatory risks.

Connect with Fioro Legal

Website | Facebook | Linkedin

New law passed to give Australian designers greater legal protection

“We are incredibly pleased that these new laws which provide greater protections for Australian designers are coming into effect. While there is more we can do, it is a big step forward towards aligning designers’ rights with many of their foreign counterparts.” - Justin Cudmore, Marque Lawyers

On August 30 2021, a bill amending the Designs Act 2003 (Cth) was passed by Parliament which includes the implementation of positive changes for designers seeking to register and protect their designs. This is a momentous day for the Australian Fashion and Textiles Industry who previously had little to no protection from unauthorised copying of their creations.

In conjunction with AFC Partner Marque Lawyers, the AFC have been lobbying for greater legal protections for Australian designers for several years, involving significant consultation with IP Australia and gaining input from many of our members. We welcome these changes, and will continue our work on these issues.

The most significant change brought by the passed bill is the introduction of a 12-month grace period from the date of disclosure of a design within which designers can file an application to register and protect their design. Currently, designers must file an application before any disclosure of their design, meaning that something as simple as a social media post by designers who aren’t aware of this requirement lose any legal protection for the design.

Now, a designer who unintentionally publishes a design on social media can still seek protection for it within 12 months. You can file for protection during the grace period if the original disclosure of the design was by:

- The designer or designers;

- The owner of the design where this is someone other than the designer (e.g. an employer, or a successor in title);

- A party authorised by the designer or design owner - for example, a marketing company releases a publication authorised by the owner; or

- A party who obtained the design from the designer or design owner without their permission - for example if the design is stolen.

Copyright generally does not exist in a garment once it has been produced commercially.

For the full breakdown of the Designs Amendment Bill, click here

Protection under the Designs Act is creatively and commercially important for Australian designers. From emerging to established, having these rules and regulations in place allows designers to create within a safe environment and prevent unauthorised copying of their designs.

If you have any questions about the Designs Amendment Bill, please contact us or reach out to our trusted AFC partner Marque Lawyers at

Covid-19 Industry Update | Advocacy and Industry Recovery

Even though it is alarming to see the increasing numbers of COVID cases in NSW, the extended restrictions in Victoria, and lockdowns across the nation, it is heartwarming to see our industry collaborating and fighting for its survival as one.

You may have already seen the articles in The Australian and on SBS News over the weekend. We are requesting that local fashion and textile industry makers and manufacturers be given the same privileges of construction and warehousing workers and be added to the “Authorised Workers” list and allowed to get back to work.

Please see below an update to the initiatives taken since the AFC Industry Forums held on Monday the 2nd of August, and updated on Wednesday 1st September 2021

Letters were sent to the NSW Premier and Treasurer “to allow the safe restart of the manufacturing sector” within the fashion and textile industry. While our request was acknowledged and we were told the matter would be addressed with urgency, not surprisingly, due to the increasing COVID cases every day, we have yet to receive a reply to our request.

The AFC Forum was also attended by representatives from the offices of Alex Greenwich MP and City of Sydney Deputy Lord Mayor, Jessica Scully, who have also received our letter and have kindly offered to advocate on our behalf with the Premier and Treasurer.

Updated 1 September 2021:
Both Alex Greenwich MP and Deputy Lord Mayor, Jess Scully, wrote to the NSW Premier on our behalf to secure a plan for the Covid-safe reopening of our local manufacturing sector, as well as amplifying this communication through their eDMs and social media. The industry is very grateful for this support.

We have also written a letter to the Minister for Jobs, Investment, Tourism and Western Sydney, The Hon. Stuart Ayres, and the Minister for Finance and Small Business, The Hon. Damien Tudehope. ​​We were assured that Minister Tudehope – and the Government – ‘is focused on getting people back to work and industries opened up in the safest possible way in the shortest time frame possible… and provided [our] correspondence to NSW Treasury for it to be considered once again in light of the ongoing restrictions.’

On the 10th of August, the AFC, along with local brand/maker representatives, met with the General Manager of the Federal COVID Response team and other key members of the Department of Industry, Science and Technology (DISER) to discuss the impact of the lockdown on local brands/makers. While our concerns were well noted and appreciated, we were advised to focus our efforts on lobbying State governments, who lead on the local pandemic response, including the definition of “Authorised Workers”. We were also encouraged to clarify, in detail “the full range of COVID-safe practices the industry can apply to minimise transmission risk and ensure safe operation”.

Our aim is to emulate the success of the construction industry in adding their workers to the “Authorised Workers” list and allowing workers from the restricted LGAs to exit under strict COVID protocols. The AFC has developed a questionnaire to ascertain the commitment of our industry’s manufacturers and makers towards the adoption of such a protocol. This survey will also help us quantify production capacity and vaccination baseline levels for future reporting. Questionnaires are confidential and will only be used to report on aggregates within the sector.

If you haven’t done so already, please complete the questionnaire here. Please make sure you encourage your manufacturing supply chain to fill this out.

Updated 1 September 2021:
Thank you to all the local manufacturers who participated and further validated our request to the government. The questionnaire is now closed.

Once we have validated your commitment to the COVID-safe plan, we will be contacting Minister Ayers, Minister for Jobs, Investment, Tourism and Western Sydney, and Minister Tudehope, Minister for Finance and Small Business, stipulating our plans and requesting their immediate attention and advocacy on this matter. We will also continue to advocate with the Federal government on behalf of the industry as well as other State governments where appropriate.

To be heard, we have to make some noise! We encourage you to contact both your State and Federal Members of Parliament. We have provided a template letter here that you can use. You can find your local MP via the links below.

Updated 1 September 2021:
Please send your letters to We will collate them and send them as a collective.

Find your Federal Member of Parliament here
Find your NSW State MP here
Find your VIC State MP here
Find your WA State MP here
Find your QLD State MP here
Find your SA State MP here
Find your NT State MP here
Find your TAS State MP here
Find your ACT State MP here

Updated 1 September 2021:

Lastly, your voice is important to us. Please help us improve by letting us know what topics you would like to see covered in AFC forums, what support the AFC can provide and any general feedback - Please enter your valuable feedback here.

Stay safe and take care,

The AFC team.

Supporting the Creative Economy | Grants available for Victorian creative businesses

Applications are now open for the Victorian Government’s new investment program, aiming to grow jobs, generate more innovative work, develop creative products and boost Victoria’s reputation as an established creative leader.

The creative community and fashion industry alike are facing prolonged hardships due to the recent restrictions and lockdowns as a result of Covid-19. During this time of uncertainty, the Victorian Government have announced their latest initiative ‘Creative State’ that aims to engender, stabilise and promote growth for Victoria’s creative industries with a $288 million investment over four years. As part of the ‘Creative State’ initiative, businesses can apply for grants split into two categories:

Creative Ventures Program:

The Creative Ventures Program is available to micro businesses with up to 10 staff. This program will provide creative entities with a stable foundation to grow and plan over a two year period, investing in a pipeline of innovative creative content, work and activities.
Other key actions of the overarching initiative and the Creative Ventures Program will also improve access to employment opportunities for creatives with disabilities who will be assessed by a panel of peers with lived experience.

Creative Enterprise Program:

The Creative Enterprise Program includes four years of investment to established businesses and organisations. Applications are open to creative industry leaders that can demonstrate initiatives in place that promote job growth, creative community support and deliverables for creative products, activities and services in line with the priorities set out in Creative State.
Both programs include a dedicated First Nations stream to support Indigenous owned and led creative businesses and organisations. In line with the principles of Aboriginal self-determination, applicants will be assessed by external First Nations industry players.

To find out more and apply for the Victorian Government's Creative State grants, follow the below links.

Creative State
Creative Enterprise Program
Creative Ventures Program

A legal introduction to eCommerce | Presented by Marque Lawyers

eCommerce plays an important role in fashion and textile businesses.

It’s an essential for fashion brands and therefore important to understand its complexity, especially legal ones. Produced by AFC Affiliate Partner Marque Lawyers, this eCommerce guide walks you through some of the most common legal issues that are seen in the eCommerce world.

As part of the AFC’s Innovation & Technology Toolkit, we invite our members to engage with this essential resource that can guide you through the below topics

Supply Chain
Why efficiently managing your supply chain is fundamental to your success.

Brand Protection and IP
Trademarking your brand as a valuable marketing tool.

Website Terms
How to write your business T&C’s with personality and why you need to keep them updated.

Privacy & Spam
Your obligations as an Australian retailer

Advertising and Social Media
How to convert campaigns to cash

Consumer Law & other Regulatory Compliance
What to do when something doesn’t go as planned

Click here to access the toolkit

AFC Member Offer
Marque Lawyers are offering AFC Members a 20 minute free consultation (limited to 2 per membership year). Find out more here

Connect with Marque Lawyers
Website | Twitter | Linkedin

A guide to circular fashion, starting with the humble t-shirt

More than 15 billion t-shirts are produced worldwide every year, contributing to over 315,000 tonnes of textile waste per year in Australia.

Earlier this week the Monash Sustainable Development Institute (MSDI) launched Circular Stories Volume 1: A Better T-Shirt for today & tomorrow – a guide for designing, making, using, reusing and disposing of t-shirts in Australia, for the wellbeing of people and planet.

The MSDI-led Circular Stories Working Group (A collective of designers, distributors, recyclers and researchers committed to raising awareness of what a circular textiles economy means in the Australian context) have developed this guide to provide shoppers, producers, retailers, marketers and regulators a solution to the growing problem of textile waste at a national and global scale.

There is an expansive opportunity for the Textile, Clothing and Footwear (TCF) sector to grow, innovate, transform and transition to an industry that continues to play a significant role in Australia, in a way that places people and planet first.

Whether you’re an industry insider looking to streamline your supply chain or an avid shopper seeking to reduce your consumption, we invite you to download the first instalment of the Circular Series, A Better T-Shirt for today and tomorrow.


Circular Stories Working Group

Julie Boulton, MSDI
Aleasha McCallion, MSDI
Courtney Holm, A.BCH
Samantha Seljak, Seljak Brand
Kirri-Mae Sampson, Now + Future
Genevieve Moody, APG & CO
Amy Gallagher, Kloke

Relief for VIC Businesses | COVID-19 Support Package

The AFC are relieved to hear that Victoria have lifted their restrictions. Victorians have endured their fifth lockdown since the pandemic began, and while the lockdowns have been lifted, there are businesses that will be suffering and continue to suffer its impacts.

To compensate those affected businesses hit by the extension of the state’s lockdowns, the government announced further funding. We called upon AFC Affiliate Partner Olvera Advisors. to help you find out how the latest government initiatives and grants can help your business in Victoria get through this tough time and start to recover.

1. 21 July 2021 – Top-up Payment


This top-up payment provides additional support to eligible SMEs affected by the current restrictions in metropolitan and regional Victoria. This payment is in addition to the 16 July 2021 Top-Up Payments.

Successful recipients of the Business Costs Assistance Program Round Two (BCAP – Round Two) will receive an additional $2800, and successful recipients of the Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund 2021 will receive an additional $4200. These payments will be processed automatically in July 2021.


To receive the top-up payment, businesses must have received the Business Costs Assistance Program Round Two grant.

Those businesses that did not receive the BCAP – Round Two are not eligible to receive the 21 June 2021 Top-Up. However, applications for the BCAP – Round Two funding will re-open by the end of July. The program extensions will enable businesses to apply for the July Top-Up payments and will be considered outside of the automatic top-up process.

If your business is eligible for the 21 July 2021 Top-Up Payment, you do not need to apply, it is an automatic payment to successful recipients of the BCAP – Round Two and Licensed Hospitality Venue Fund 2021.

2. Business Costs Assistance Program Round Two (BCAP – Round Two)


The information on BCAP – Round Two is from when applications were previously opened and is subject to change, when applications re-open in late July.

This program offers grants of $2,500 to $5,000 for businesses with an annual payroll of up to $10 million. It also provides the option to increase the amount received to $7,000 with the ‘Tourism Supplement’ or the Business Costs Assistance Program Round Two Top-up Payment (BCAP Top-up Payment).


- Be located within Victoria

- Be registered as operating in an eligible industry sector identified in the List of Eligible ANZSIC classes (as defined by the ANZSIC class linked to the business’ ABN)

- Have incurred direct costs as a result of the circuit breaker action and the business cannot predominantly operate remotely.

- For example, but not limited to: booking cancellations, utilities, wages, paid leave for staff unable to attend work, rent or the loss of perishable goods or any other direct costs affecting the operation of the business related to the May-June 2021 COVID-19 restrictions. These costs may have been incurred prior to, on or after 27 May 2021. The costs must be incurred by the applying business, as defined by its ABN.

- Have an annual Victorian payroll of up to $10 million in 2019-20 on an ungrouped basis.

- Be registered for Goods and Services Tax (GST) on 27 May 20215

- Hold an Australian Business Number (ABN) and have held that ABN at27 May 2021.

- Be registered with the responsible Federal or State regulator.

For employing businesses only:

- Be registered with WorkSafe Victoria; and

- Attest that the business is supporting its workers to access any paid leave entitlements, or that if a person can work from home, to work from home during the COVID-19 restrictions, and supporting their casual workers, where possible.

The total value of a grant under the Program is up to $7000. For businesses that meet the standard eligibility criteria:

- Businesses subject to restrictions between Friday 28 May 2021 and Thursday 3 June 2021 may be eligible for $2500

- Businesses subject to restrictions between Friday 28 May 2021 and Thursday 10 June 2021 may be eligible for $5000

- Businesses subject to restrictions between Friday 28 May 2021 and Thursday 17 June 2021 may be eligible for $7000

Please note these amounts are subject to change when applications re-open end of July. Grant funds must be used to assist the business, for example on:

- Meeting business costs, including utilities, wages or rent; or

- Seeking financial, legal or other advice to support business continuity planning; or

- Developing the business through marketing and communications activities; or

- Any other supporting activities related to the operation of the business.

Further information relating to the re-opening of applications will be available soon here.

3. Jobs Victoria Fund


This grant offers up to $20,000 in wage subsidies and is available for eligible employers and jobseekers, to help with costs of hiring new employees. Eligible businesses can apply for the wage subsidy for up to 20 full time equivalent employees, depending on the size of the business.


This subsidy is aimed to support priority groups where their employment has been particularly impacted. To be eligible, the business must employ someone from at least one of the priority groups. If you are considering applying for this grant, you must hire the employees from the priority groups prior to applying for the fund.

The Jobs Victoria Fund financially supports these priority jobseekers into work:

- Women aged over 45 years

- Jobseekers who are long-term unemployed (unemployed for six months or more)

- Jobseekers registered with a Jobs Victoria Partner.

- Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander people

- People with disability

- People seeking asylum/refugees

- Newly arrived migrants from non-English speaking backgrounds

- Young people aged under 25

- People over 45 years

- Veterans

- People previously employed under the Working for Victoria initiative

A questionnaire for eligibility, instructions on how to apply and FAQs can be found here.

4. Late Payment Interest Waiver

The Commissioner of State Revenue announced that late payment interest would not be applied on outstanding tax debts, until 30 September 2021. From 1 October 2021, any outstanding tax debts that have not been paid will once again be subject to late payment interest calculated from the date of the tax default.

5. Land Tax Relief


Whilst these applications for 2020 and 2021 have closed, the Victorian government is accepting late applications for those who could not apply due to reasons outside their control. Late applications for 2020 land tax relief must be lodged by 30 September 2021 and those for 2021 land tax relief by 31 December 2021.


- Deferral of 2020 land tax until 31 March 2021 for eligible landowners who own at least one non-residential property and have total taxable landholdings below $1 million.

- Reduction of up to 50%, and deferral of remaining 2020 land tax, until 31 March 2021 for eligible commercial landlords and eligible owner-occupiers.

- Extension of 25% tax waiver to 2021 land tax for eligible commercial landlords, and commercial owner-occupiers, and deferral of remaining tax until 30 November 2021, including any deferred land tax from 2020
For detailed information, visit the:

- 2020 Coronavirus Land Tax Relief Page

- 2021 Coronavirus Land Tax Relief Page

6. Payroll Tax Relief


- Waiving of 2019-20 payroll tax for businesses with annual Victorian taxable wages up to $3 million.

- Exempting additional payments under the JobKeeper program from payroll tax.

- Deferring 2020-21 payroll tax liabilities for employers with Victorian payrolls up to $10 million, based on their 2019-20 financial year returns, until the 2021-22 financial year.

- Waiving of 2020-21 and 2021-22 payroll tax after applying the New Jobs payroll tax credit.

Detailed Information available here.

7. Stamp Duty Relief for Regional Victoria


A 50% stamp duty discount will apply to contracts entered into on or after 1 January 2021 to buy commercial or industrial property in regional Victoria.

For detailed information, visit the coronavirus duty concession for regional commercial or industrial properties in regional Victoria page.

8. Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme


The Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme will be available to SMEs with an annual turnover of less than $50 million that have suffered a decline in turnover of at least 30 per cent due to coronavirus.
Businesses will get financial relief in the form of a proportionate reduction in rent. For example, a business with a turnover of 40 per cent of pre-pandemic levels can only be charged 40 per cent of its rent. Of the balance, at least half must be waived, with the remainder to be deferred.
Tenants and landlords are encouraged to enter negotiations directly, however the Victorian Small Business Commission (VSBC) is available to provide mediation if parties cannot reach satisfactory outcomes.
For eligible applications under the new scheme where there is also an agreement already in place from the first Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme, existing deferred rent repayment requirements will be frozen until 15 January 2022, when the outstanding amount will be added to the deferred rent accrued during the current Scheme


- Must be a commercial tenant that has experienced a loss of more than 30% during the pandemic.
(This is calculated by comparing the turnover of a chosen three month period in the final quarter of the 2020/21 financial year with turnover from the same three months in the final quarter of the 2018/19 financial year.)

- If the percentage drop is more than 30%, the eligible SME will receive relief in proportion to the reduction of their turnover.

- Special arrangements will be in place to assess the turnover impacts for new businesses which were not operating in 2019.

Eligibility for the scheme will be a one-time test. Businesses which are eligible at the beginning of the scheme will remain eligible throughout, with the proportion of rent relief adjusted in line with their turnover. The scheme will run until 15 January 2022.

For more information on the Commercial Tenancy Relief Scheme click here.

9. Business Costs Assistance Program

The Business Costs Assistance Program provides funding of up to $1.6 billion, supporting approximately 132,000 businesses across multiple sectors who were recipients of the Business Costs Assistance Program Round Two (mentioned in point 2 of this package)

Businesses throughout Victoria will receive automatic payments to cover ongoing costs such as wages, rent, utilities and insurance:

- $2,800 a week for businesses with an annual payroll below $650,000
- $5,600 a week for businesses with an annual payroll of $650,000 to $3 million
- $8,400 for businesses with an annual payroll of $3 million to $10 million.


Businesses will remain eligible while they are unable to operate due to public health restrictions.

10. Small Business COVID Hardship Fund


The Small Business COVID Hardship Fund will receive a $448 million boost, increasing the total grant amount available to small and medium-sized businesses from $14,000 to $20,000 in recognition of the impact of the lockdown extension.


The Small Business COVID Hardship Fund supports businesses that have been ineligible for Victorian Government business support programs since May but have experienced a reduction in revenue of at least 70 per cent. This includes businesses that are legally allowed to operate but are restricted in their ability to generate revenue.

Applications for the Small Business COVID Hardship Fund close on 10 September.

11. COVID-19 Disaster Payments


The COVID-19 Disaster Payment is administered through Services Australia, with the Federal Government funding the areas declared a Commonwealth hotspot and the Victorian Government assuming responsibility to fund payments in locked-down areas that are not deemed to be official hotspots.

The payment is set at $450 for people who have lost from eight to 20 hours work or a full day of work (over seven days), and $750 for 20 hours or more of work lost. People who receive certain Commonwealth income support are eligible to receive a $200 payment where they have lost eight hours or more of work due to the lockdowns.


Eligible workers across the state who lose hours of work due to the lockdown will be able to access the Commonwealth’s COVID-19 Disaster Payment, as will individuals who are sole-trader business owners who lose work and that do not qualify for Victorian Government support programs.

Connect with Olvera Advisors:

Olvera Advisors have helped businesses solve complex issues, specialising in business transformations, distressed debt & capital and crisis management.

Website | Linkedin | Member Perk

Helping maximise sales & profit through inventory | Smart In Planning

Tell us about you & Smart in Planning

SMART IN PLANNING is a Merchandise Planning Company that provides services, solutions and support in this highly specialised, business critical field. Our objective is simple ... maximise sales and profit through optimising inventory. Therein lies the competitive edge.

We are practitioners, not theorists. My team has honed their skills across senior roles spanning fast fashion, hard goods, seasonal, branded, online, FMCG and discount variety sectors.

Throughout my career, people have always been my hot button – my teams and peers throughout my employment career, and my team and clients now. I guess this is where my passion for service finds its place. I’ve never viewed service as only outward-facing (meaning to the customer or the client), but have always placed high importance, focus, energy, and respect on internal relationships.

SMART IN PLANNING is the culmination of every skill and experience in my merchandise planning career to date, translated into a service offering. It is a true union of my passions.

Tell us a little about your industry background and what brought you to working in your industry?

I’ve been in retail, specifically merchandise planning, for 25 years. I was drawn to the energy of the retail world. It represented a corporate environment that wasn’t stuffy and office-bound, but that was tangible, accessible, and relatable. It felt familiar, and I could see and understand all the parts – it was an environment that made sense to me.

On completing my university degree in Business, I secured a job with The Foschini Group (TFG) in South Africa, earning a place in a pilot Fast Track Trainee Merchandiser Program, which set the foundations for what would follow.

In 2001, I moved to Sydney, and my first role here was with Seduce. Coming from a business as large and structured as TFG, it was a huge adjustment – Seduce had nothing. I had to think through the underlying principles and drivers of “best practice” that I had almost taken for granted in the TFG environment, and figure out how to recreate that here.

I was later approached to join The Warehouse Group (TWG / TWA) at the very early stages of introducing Planning into the business, and I played an integral part in that, and the overall business evolution, eventually being appointed as General Manager of Inventory and Planning.

In 2011, I was approached by the Cotton On Group to head up merchandise planning for the entire group, globally. The Cotton On experience was dynamic and fast-paced. A day at COG is like a week anywhere else. It’s hyper-growth, with up to 200 store openings in a year, with an insatiable appetite for innovation, variety, and opportunity, embedded in a culture of finding ways forward rather than focusing on obstacles.

Leaving Cotton On, I went on to start SMART IN PLANNING, and that’s what I’ve been doing now for the last 6+ years! In that time I’ve been lucky enough to work with over 100 businesses and brands, with a combined annual turnover well in excess of $10bn!

How does Smart in Planning work with the Australian fashion & textile industry?

Every business is different! We get to know you, and customise our solutions to suit your needs.
Our services are very varied, reflecting the diverse experience of our team. They include, but are not limited to:

Smart Start:

We can create and embed a Merchandise Planning Framework in your business, so you can reap the rewards of #planningasitshouldbe


We have the technical expertise and capacity to make positive transformation less demanding for your business, through stabilising and strengthening people, process and systems, including system implementation support.


We have the experience and passion to amplify the impact of Planning in your business through online courses, our free resource centre The Planning POD, workshops, mentoring and coaching. See Merchandise Planning through our unique lens and learn the thinking behind the concepts.


Outsource your Planning to the experts and enjoy the benefits of senior Merchandise Planning expertise without committing to a permanent in-house Merchandise Planning structure; or rely on us to help you bridge a short term gap in your team.

Smart Art:

We help formulate strategy, and drive tangible results through our Merchandise Planning expertise, elevating the Planning perspective in organisations, embedding lasting and profitable change, through board advisory style engagements.

Whatever stage your business is at, we can partner with you to help navigate through your Merchandise Planning journey.

What are some key projects you are working on that you would like to highlight to the AFC community?

Merchandise Planning is a niche skill set, and training options are even more scarce than skilled Planners, and so it was always high on my priority list to deliver a training course specifically for Merchandise Planning. And I’m so thrilled that last year my career long dream came true!

SMART SCHOOL is the latest addition to our services offering. Underpinned by the extensive experience across the team, we offer online training courses bringing together the art and the science of Merchandise Planning. In line with my style of Planning, the learning content is designed to be more thought provoking than instructional, encouraging the learner to think differently about concepts they may already be familiar with.

Within SMART SCHOOL, we have two key offerings:

1. The Planning POD: Our free resource centre

Our mission at SMART IN PLANNING is to #changethefaceofplanning and we're committed to doing that through providing as much value add to the industry as we can. The Planning POD is a place where we share our tools and resources, principles, concepts and inspiration for the benefit of everyone in the Merchandise Planning and Retail community - all 100% free.

You can think of it a little bit like our 'veggie patch'. You can join now here.

The Planning Pod by Smart in Planning

2. Online course: Merchandise Planning | Foundations

Foundations is our signature entry level course, coupling together the context and principles of the Merchandise Planning landscape, with the technical retail maths calculations, to give a truly holistic introduction to Merchandise Planning. Learn more here.

Merchandise Planning by Smart in Planning

What is next? Any exciting developments, collaborations or events in the pipeline?

We have lots of exciting things in the works! More training courses, new blogs, exciting client projects, and a very special collaboration with AFC on their amazing EDIT collection.

In addition to that we are always looking for new ways we can serve our community and have plans to launch our podcast before the year is out.

What are you offering to AFC Members and how will this help their business?

We are pleased to offer AFC members a 30% discount off the regular price of our signature course: Merchandise Planning | Foundations.

Ideal for Junior Planners and Allocators in the early stages of their career, or seasoned Planners looking for a new perspective, Foundations is your one stop shop for everything you need to know when getting started in Merchandise Planning!

Also perfect for Buyers, Analysts and other Planning related functions, wanting a deeper understanding of how Planning works, as well as founders and business owners, looking to implement Planning and understand the positive impacts it can have on their business.

Foundations will help accelerate your Planning journey!

Connect with Smart in Planning:






Relief for NSW businesses | COVID-19 Support package

With restrictions in place for people in NSW, we called upon AFC Affiliate Partner Olvera Advisors to help find out how the latest government initiatives and grants can help your business get through this tough time.

The NSW lockdown has had immediate and profound impacts, with many businesses struggling to survive this latest hit. The NSW Government will be offering financial support to NSW businesses impacted by the recent COVID-19 restrictions and stay-at-home orders. The key grants available include:

- Covid-19 Small Business Grants 2021
- Job Saver
- Payroll Tax Support
- Support with Tenancy
- Covid-19 Micro-business grants

1. Covid-19 Small Business Grants 2021


This grant has been introduced to alleviate cash flow constraints during the lockdown, with a one-off payment. The amount received depends on the decline in turnover experienced over a minimum 2-week period from 26 June 2021 to 26 July 2021, compared to the same period in 2019:

- $7,500 for a decline of 30% or more
- $10,500 for a decline of 50% or more
- $15,000 for a decline of 70% or more

The grant will cover the first three weeks of lockdown, with payments set to start in late July 2021, if eligible.

- Have an active Australian Business Number (ABN)
- Demonstrate your business was operating in NSW as at 1 June 2021
- Have had total annual Australian wages of $10 million or less as at 1 July 2020
- Aggregated annual turnover between $75,000 and $50 million (inclusive) for the year ended 30 June 2020
- Have business costs for which there is no other government support available
- Maintain your employee headcount as at 13 July 2021

The grant can be used for various business costs incurred from 1 June 2021, including:
- Utilities, wages, and rent
- Financial, legal, or other advice to support business continuity planning
- Marketing and communications activities to develop the business
- The cost of perishable goods that can no longer be used
- Other activities to support the operation of the business

The clothing retail industry is listed on the highly impacted industries list, and the Service NSW website provides the evidence required for the various grants. Of key importance, if applying, the SME needs to establish that no other government support is available, as only one grant is available for a single ABN.

For SMEs on the NSW Border with Victoria impacted by these lockdowns, may apply using a different comparison period, being a minimum 2-week period from 27 May 2021 to 26 July 2021, to demonstrate a decline in turnover.

Applications for this grant open on 19 July 2021 and close at 11:59pm on 13 September 2021.
Covid-19 Small Business Grants 2021 Links
- Apply for the 2021 COVID-19 business grant
- 2021 COVID-19 business grant Guidelines

2. Job Saver


This grant provides cashflow support in the form of fortnightly payments to help maintain employee headcount as at 13 July. The period covered by this grant is 19 July 2021 onwards.

The amount received for eligible businesses are:

- Employing businesses: 40% of weekly payroll, with a minimum payment of $1,500 per week and a maximum payment of $10,000 per week
- Non-employing business: $1,000 per week


- A revenue decline of 30% or more
- Turnover between $75,000 and $50 million

Expressions of interests can be made from 14 July 2021, and applications open from 26 July 2021.

Job Saver Links
- Job Saver Overview


3. Payroll Tax Support


This grant provides the following assistance:

- 25% reduction in FY22 payroll tax for eligible businesses
- Payroll tax payments deferred until 7 October 2021 for all businesses
- Interest free 12-month repayment plans for deferred payroll tax


To be eligible for the payroll tax waivers, businesses must have Australian wages of between $1.2 million and $10 million and have experienced a 30 per cent decline in turnover.

The period covered is the full lockdown period.

Payroll Tax Support Links
- Payroll Tax Support information


4. Tenancy Support


The NSW Government has imposed a rule that landlords cannot evict retail or commercial tenancies who were impacted by the lockdown without mediation. Additionally, land tax relief is available for landlords who reduce the rent for impacts tenants up to 100% of their 2021 land tax liability.

These protections are available for the whole lockdown period.

The Small Business Commissioner website provides further details regarding mediation and application forms.

Tenancy Support Links
- Small Business Commissioner Website

5. Covid-19 Micro-business grants


To be considered a micro-business, which includes sole traders, your business must have an annual turnover between $30,000 and $75,000. This grant provides a tax-free payment of $1,500 per fortnight of restrictions, with payments starting in late July 2021, for those eligible.

Micro-businesses are also receiving the same support regarding tenancy. Landlords cannot evict retail or commercial tenancies without mediation. This support will last throughout the lockdown. Furthermore, land tax relief is also provided to landowners who reduce rent for affected tenants between 1 July and 31 December 2021.


To be eligible for a grant, your revenue must have declined by 30% or more.

The period covered is from the start of lockdown and is administered through Service NSW.

Importantly, if you classify as a sole trader, you will not be eligible for both the NSW Covid-19 Micro Business Grant and the Covid-19 Disaster Payment.

Summary of all Available Assistance Links
- COVID-19 Support for individuals and businesses PDF
- COVID-19 business support – 2021

6. Support for commercial tenants


The NSW Government will re-introduce the National Cabinets mandatory Code of Conduct for Commercial Leasing to provide rent relief for eligible tenants impacted by the lockdowns and restrictions due to COVID-19.

The Retail and Other Commercial Leases Regulation will prohibit landlords from evicting or locking out tenants for certain breaches of the lease unless they have first renegotiated rent taking into consideration the National Cabinet’s Code of Conduct. The Code of Conduct requires landlords to provide rent relief in proportion with their tenant’s decline in turnover. Of the rent relief provided, at least 50 per cent must be in the form a waiver, and the balance a deferral.

By reintroducing the code, small businesses who have bills piling up will be provided with more certainty and relief during this disruptive time.


The Regulation applies to commercial and retail tenants with a turnover of up to $50 million who qualify for the COVID-19 Micro-business grant, COVID-19 Business Grant or JobSaver Payment.

More information for tenants can be found in the
- Commercial Leases and COVID-19 FAQs

Connect with Olvera Advisors:

Olvera Advisors have helped businesses solve complex issues, specialising in business transformations, distressed debt & capital and crisis management.
Website | Linkedin | Member Perk

Meet Assia Benmedjdoub | Publisher at Ragtrader


Tell us about you and Ragtrader

What Australian fashion staple is locally owned, operated and approaching its 50 year milestone? Ragtrader has been a trusted source of information for the Australian fashion industry since the 1970s, evolving into daily digital content, a bimonthly magazine and annual events and conferences.

These channels deliver insights on the entire fashion retail ecosystem, from managing profitable front-end retail and eCommerce businesses to optimising back-end processes such as manufacturing and inventory.

Tell us a little about your industry background and what brought you to working in your industry?

Ragtrader has a number of long-serving members with a deep understanding of Australia’s fashion landscape, including founder and regular contributor Fraser McEwing. I’ve been with the title for over a decade and started my journey by interning at consumer fashion publications.

How does Ragtrader work with the Australian fashion & textile industry?

The majority of our audience consists of key decision-makers including C-Suite management and brand owners, making up 93% of the readership. Ragtrader works to provide these leaders with regular news, in-depth analysis and networking opportunities to make empowered business decisions.

What are some key projects Ragtrader is working on that you would like to highlight to the AFC community?

We have amplified our content to include downloadable reports into core categories such as fashion eCommerce, marketing and retail operations. We have also created a number of virtual programs to keep the industry connected during lockdown. These can be accessed via our free newsletter and subscription to this is available here.

What is next? Any exciting developments, collaborations or events in the pipeline?

Having recently welcomed a full house to our Ragtrader Live conference in Sydney, we are looking forward to hosting a Melbourne iteration later this year. We are also working on a number of content extensions for the second half, including a venture into the podcast space.

What are you offering to AFC Members and how will this help their business?

Ragtrader is thrilled to offer AFC Members a VIP rate to attend our conferences as well as 40% off subscriptions. We believe these channels will provide clothing, footwear and accessories businesses the information and networking opportunities to succeed.

Connect with Ragtrader





Innovation in Manufacturing Grant | Applications Now Open

Manufacturing Skills Australia (MSA) has announced the third round of support payments designed to assist and support workers within the Manufacturing industries. They are seeking applications from around Australia with a theme of ‘Innovation in manufacturing’.
Applicants can apply for between $1,000 and $10,000 to develop their skills and knowledge through research, education and/or training. 
If you are working at any level in manufacturing and are passionate about innovation, MSA wants to help you achieve your goals. They are encouraging people that work or study in sectors and occupations associated with manufacturing, which includes textiles, clothing and footwear..
The application deadline is 31 August 2021.
To find out more information about how to apply, head to the Manufacturing Skills Australia Website.

Meet Olvera Advisors

Tell us about you & Olvera?

Olvera Advisors is a boutique Sydney-based consultancy that helps organisations reset and grow. A big part of what we do is partnering with SMEs to define key issues they’re facing and identify practical solutions. We assist business owners take control of each phase of the business life-cycle, whether that’s expansion and growth, transformation, or winding down.


Tell us a little about your industry background and what brought you to working in your industry?

I actually started out as a solicitor practicing in commercial and insolvency litigation before being appointed licensee for Giorgio Armani in Melbourne where I operated the brand’s flagship CBD store. After moving to Sydney, I shifted to the advisory side of things and today at Olvera I work across business restructuring, strategy and advisory.


How does Olvera work with the Australian fashion & textile industry?

I’m lucky to have an in-depth understanding and experience of the fashion industry as well as law and accounting, which gives me unique insight when working with clients in the fashion and textile industry. This has enabled me to forge great relationships with many Australian fashion brands and assist them with issues ranging from strategic planning and finance solutions to shareholder disputes, buyouts and formal insolvency arrangements.


What are some key projects you are working on that you would like to highlight to the AFC community?

Since the COVID-19 pandemic hit Australia, we’ve partnered with a number of fashion brands to help them adapt to today’s rapidly evolving business landscape. The pandemic has impacted all businesses in some way but the fashion and textile industry has faced its own specific challenges and we’ve been privileged over the past 12 months to assist many firms in the sector to navigate successfully this period of unprecedented disruption.


What is next? Any exciting developments, collaborations or events in the pipeline?

We’re very excited about a new collaboration with AFC. Olvera is launching a 12-month program for AFC members giving them a toolkit that equips them with business fundamentals and a pathway to success in the fashion and textiles sector. It covers common challenges like establishing a business, how to obtain clients, buying out or buying in a partner, and a roadmap on how to grow and sustain your business over the long term.


AFC Members offer

Olvera’s offer gives AFC members a two-hour free consultation with one of our expert teams. In the consultation, we get the chance to discuss with members their business challenges and potential solutions. Every consultation is tailored to specific members’ needs so we can start to chart an individual path forward based on where they are on their business journey.

AFC members can access this exclusive offer through the Member Perks page.


Olvera Advisor's website



Tell us a bit about yourself and how INJURY came to be?

I’m Eugene Leung, Founder and Creative Director of INJURY, a creative fashion house that focuses on our own slow fashion designer wear brand, creating original music and other multi-media art creations.

I started INJURY in 2004 mainly as a hobby, I was creating graphics and tee-shirt collections in my spare time outside of my architectural job. After the first two seasons, we saw good business growth with INJURY, so we moved forward and worked on it full-time, making our full menswear fashion collection and joined Melbourne Fashion Week for the first time in 2005.

Dan Tse joined INJURY in 2008 as the Womenswear Design Director, she established the womenswear line and expanded the wholesale business to a global network, with a strong focus in Asia. 



Since starting in 2009, can you break down your thought process on expanding INJURY into the global market and what challenges/triumphs you experienced? 

Like many other Australian brands, we started off joining Australian fashion week to gain retail orders in Australia and New Zealand. Business was good between 2004 to 2008, we also managed to get a distribution deal with a Japanese distributor which was our first step towards exporting to Asia. 

In 2008 the retail market economy in Australia wasn’t as good as before and we realised that we were relying more on our overseas orders. We decided to take bigger steps forward to expanding into the global market, we started showing our collections at trade shows in the US and in Paris and signed a distribution deal with a Hong Kong multi-label showroom. We were then selling to around 20 stores in the US and Hong Kong in amazing select stores like Oak NYC, I.T, Harvey Nichols and D-Mop. We then expanded further and began selling to countries like Singapore, Japan, Korean, Taiwan, Thailand and Macau, China etc. 

In 2014, we joined the first-ever independent designer brand showroom in Shanghai. At that time this was very new in Shanghai and only 24 fashion brands were invited to showcase. INJURY was the only foreign brand alongside the best independent Chinese fashion designer brands. We gained a decent amount of orders in our China showcase instantly, however as we were new to the Chinese market we realised that the product sales tax, invoicing system and logistics were a lot more complicated than what we have encountered in other markets; it took us sometime to figure all these out. We made mistakes and then became confident in trading with new markets.


Your AAFW 2021 digital show ‘The Butterfly's dream’ was Australia’s first ever 100% CGI digital fashion show, can you tell us why you decided to take that avenue and the process that came with it?

We have done many physical runway shows over the years in fashion weeks in Australia, Paris, New York, Beijing and Shanghai. As much as we are very happy with all these experiences, we felt that for AAFW 2021 it was time to challenge ourselves and create something different. Especially during the Covid-19 pandemic, we felt that new formats can stimulate our own creative development as well as bring a new perspective of what a fashion show format could be.

The process has been fun and amazing. With many ‘expectable’ shocking moments, I would say it was pretty much like a roller coaster ride. Although we had experience with creating avatars and CGI campaigns since 2018 when we were curating and creative directing a campaign to promote designers in Hong Kong, we had never made a 3-minute long 100% CGI fashion film with this level of complexity. The technical side was completely new to us. We created an entirely new 3D environment, over 10 avatar characters as well as designing and making all the clothing and accessories digitally. 

We needed to create the film within a month for AAFW and realising that just the rendering would take up to 2 weeks, we formed a small global team that consists of 3D clothing technicians, rendering engineers and 3D environment designers who we worked with very closely. The process was very intense and we basically worked 24/7 to overcome problems we faced.



What are your plans to continue the combination of tech and fashion in your future collections/showcases?

We would like to develop further in the realm of mix-reality art for fashion campaigns and showcases, so that fashion simulation technology can be as relevant to our current business model and contribute more to the ecosystem of the fashion industry.

I believe our goal is to use tech as a tool to help minimise wastage through the process of clothing sampling and merchandising. We would also like to keep using tech as a base to help us collect data and gain consensus to determine what product is worth producing in a physical format.



What’s next for INJURY? 

The CGI fashion show is part one of the story where everything is in the digital world, the clothing is only available in a digital format in our online shop; Part two is to bring all these digital clothing into real life, so right now we are busy developing the physical collection for real people.

We are also working on our next music release and a pop-up retail store that promotes a circular economy.


Watch 'A Butterfly's Dream' here



AFC Resources | Responsible Industry Toolkit

As part of the AFC’s vision, we are working towards a re-shaped Australian fashion and textile industry that is world-leading in purposeful innovation, mindful creativity and human-centricity.

As such, we are working to enable and empower our members to set responsible practice goals and reinvigorated business models aimed at creating a resilient and thriving sector that prioritises the harmony between people, planet, and profit.  

And as a very first step towards this end, it gives us great pleasure to introduce you to the first phase of the AFC’s Responsible Industry Toolkit. These modules have been designed and developed by industry topic experts as an educational and practical resource to assist in navigating the sustainability landscape for businesses at any stage of their journey. 

Launching in phases, the modules have been developed to help our members on their journey towards sustainable and responsible practice. 

Together let’s harness the principles of circular design, a leadership mindset and a systems-thinking approach to level up as an industry, and create new business models that ensure a sustainable and thriving world ready and able to preserve our future generations. 

These modules are available exclusively for AFC Members and can be accessed via the AFC Toolkits. Read more about the modules available below.


Responsible Industry Toolkit: Phase 1

Produced by Valentina Zarew, Newromantic


Sustainability Fundamentals by Valentina Zarew

In this module you will learn about the fundamentals of sustainable design – both social and environmental and how your business can start taking practical steps towards positive transformation. Sustainable design has the power to change the world. Although a bold statement, it stands true.


Ethical Sourcing: Transparency and Traceability by Dr Lisa Heinz

The Australian fashion industry is a creative powerhouse, and by turning its innovative energy toward ethical sourcing, it can genuinely change the world by making a positive impact on the planet and workers throughout the supply chain. In this module you will learn about ethical sourcing and how your business can take steps to ensure your supply chain is safe, fair, sustainable and transparent.


Circularity: Product Design by Dr Clara Vuletich 

The design and product teams are central to a circular fashion system. In circular design, the designer becomes a strategic systems thinker who enables materials to be recirculated and who designs out waste. This module will give you some context of why circular design is so important and how to apply it to your products and processes.


Members can access the modules here


UMENCO is a leading human resources agency specialising in recruitment, executive search, headhunting and career coaching. We recruit for roles across a broad range of disciplines within the fashion, beauty and lifestyle industries including: design, production, finance, buying, marketing, PR & communications, HR, technology and all channels of sales including e-commerce, retail and wholesale.

We are equally committed to helping brands build their dream teams, and to supporting individuals to achieve their career aspirations.

Led by Director Angela Briggs, the UMENCO team delivers outstanding recruitment experiences that cultivate meaningful, enduring relationships with the clients and talent that we represent.

Empathy, thought-leadership and philanthropy are at the forefront of our brand values and people sit at the heart of everything we do.



We work closely with our partners in the Australian fashion & textile industry to co-create impactful people strategies, lead organisational development, and source and secure the best talent from the local and global market for each role. We believe in cultivating equitable, fair and inclusive workplaces where organisations and their talent can thrive, and we work to ensure this is reflected across the Australian fashion & textile industry.

Our commitment to people is also manifest in our longstanding philanthropic partnership with Giant Steps—a not-for-profit organisation that educates and empowers young people with autism to help them reach their full potential. Angela’s son Thomas is a student at the Giant Steps school, and thrives within their rich learning programs and progressive curriculum. The opportunity to attend Giant Steps has changed his life.

UMENCO proudly supports Giant Steps by raising funds and awareness through dedicated events, collaborations with leading Australian brands, and initiatives including Project You: a not-for-profit career coaching service; and Project U, ME, ’n CO: a not-for-profit industry initiative providing HR advisory and recruitment to brands in the Australian fashion industry that champion responsible practices.

As UMENCO grows, so too does our resolve to provide equal opportunity for all, and to give back. Looking ahead, we are developing projects with partner brands to elevate the voices of differently-abled bodied/special needs individuals across the fashion industry, and to expand the products, services and events available to this community.


AFC Member Offer

In keeping with this vision, we are delighted to partner with the Australian Fashion Council to extend an opportunity to recruit one role per business to the following candidates:

●  Two Indigenous designers, whose businesses foreground responsible design practices.

●  Any AFC members who are special needs or differently-abled body clothing providers.

●  Any AFC members who are demonstrably working towards creating a range of accessible clothing for special needs or differently-abled bodied individuals.

In duality with this offer, we are also providing AFC members with a 20% reduced rate on the recruitment of roles through UMENCO.


Connect with UMENCO





Meet Whispli


Tell us about yourself and Whispli.

My name is Sylvain Mansotte, I'm the CEO and co-founder of Whispli. Whispli is an Australian company, headquartered in Sydney whose mission is to enable trusted conversations. We are the leading platform to engage anonymously with your employees, whether for compliance, HR, or culture purposes. 

We offer 2 solutions: Whispli Core, our award-winning whistleblowing platform, and Whispli Pulse, an employee engagement survey platform that allows you to start anonymous follow-up conversations with your workforce. Whispli was born from my experience as a whistleblower.


How did you get started in the whistleblowing industry?

Back in 2012, I received a call from the newly appointed Chief Procurement Officer of a large Australian-based company to assist in building a new function. I jumped at the opportunity, and one of my first priorities was to understand my new employer's third-party spend profile.

Within 2 months, I had uncovered a $20M fraud that spanned 12 years and led to the perpetrator – a finance executive with 30 years of experience in the company – admitting to the crime and ultimately being sentenced to 15 years in prison. Although I was promoted, I couldn't stop thinking how my experience as a whistleblower could have been better.

I was initially reluctant to approach any of my colleagues and did not feel confident speaking to the third-party organisation appointed by the company because it would compromise the anonymity I felt necessary. 

In 2015, I left the company, and decided to build a solution to take away the fear, shame and guilt that people have when speaking up; that's how Whispli was born.



How does Whispli work with the Australian fashion & textile industry?

We are helping organisations of all types and sizes better engage with their employees, suppliers, and third-party workers. 

In the fashion and textile industry, it's common for a brand to work with tens or hundreds of different suppliers, and it's nearly impossible for them to be aware of what's going on inside each of these organisations. Whispli Core and Whispli Pulse can help you quickly deploy an engagement strategy across your supply chain to uncover hidden risks leveraging your best asset; the workers.


What are some key projects that Whispli are currently working on?

First of all, we are thrilled to partner with the Australian Fashion Council and to have the opportunity of raising awareness around employee engagement and whistleblowing with your members. Whispli Pulse is our latest product, and we see excellent results with retailers and supply chain auditors. 



What's next? Any exciting developments, collaborations, or events in the pipeline?

We are constantly organising new events, webinars and we have some pretty exciting collaborations in the works. The best way to stay up to date is to check our website or to follow us on Linkedin.


What are you offering to AFC Members, and how will this help their business?

Whispli offers an easy pathway for employees/contractors/suppliers to report any wrongdoings or engage in a difficult and courageous conversation. It will help AFC members detect the early signals on matters that could impact their employees morale & productivity as well as their organisation's brand, reputation, and bottom line. 
We're pleased to offer an additional 2 months free of charge on any of our packages for AFC members.



AFC Member Offer

Members can access the Whispli offer by logging into the Member Portal and navigating to the Member Perks page.

A letter from Leila, CEO of the AFC | June 2021

First, I would like to acknowledge the Traditional Owners of country throughout Australia and pay my respects to their Elders past, present and emerging.

As I settle down to write this, I am thinking about the enormity of the last few weeks for the AFC, indeed for our industry.

On the 11th of May, a couple of hours before the official announcement of the Federal budget, we found out that, for the first time in decades, our industry would be allocated $1m in Federal funding to “support the design and development of an Australian fashion certification trademark promoting and endorsing the high quality of locally designed and produced products to key overseas markets”. Read the Vogue article here

This means we can start the journey towards clearly articulating the DNA of the ‘Australian Fashion Brand’ and creating a mechanism for local and global consumers to discover and choose Australian fashion showcasing our aspirational lifestyle, our indigenous heritage and our unique creativity that is distinguished through purposeful innovation, mindful creativity and human-centricity. 

And then on the 26th of May, the Minister for the Environment, the Hon. Sussan Ley MP (with whom I had an early morning chat that day at Cue Civic Canberra) hosted the first ever National Clothing Textiles Waste Roundtable at Parliament House and announced the Government's intention to prioritise clothing textile waste and invest $1m in seed funding through the National Product Stewardship Investment Fund.

The funding will assist industry, government and stakeholder organisations and experts to collaborate, innovate and find solutions to Australia’s 800,000 tonnes in clothing and textiles waste that is dumped yearly in landfill!

Organised by the Department of Agriculture, Water and Environment (DAWE), the Roundtable was a great start to a robust conversation around the scope and complexity of the problem and the various priorities and possible solutions that were suggested by the participants

The AFC, together with our great advocate and partner, Charitable Recycling Australia, was privileged to be asked to present at the event and participated in the formation of the final Communique put forward by DAWE regarding next steps. 

And on Monday the 31st of May, on the first day of the 2021 Afterpay Australian Fashion Week (AAFW), the AFC launched our much-anticipated landmark industry study commissioned to Ernst and Young and supported by Afterpay. Read the report here

Again, we were incredibly privileged to have the support of the Hon Dan Tehan MP - Federal Trade and Tourism Minister and the Hon Stuart Ayres MP - NSW Minister for Jobs, Investment, Tourism at the launch.

The report was incredibly well received by our community and widely covered by media. Minister Tehan was particularly impressed with the data surrounding jobs (489,000) and export ($7.2 billion) and declared ‘he was shocked and had no idea’ at the depth and width of our industry.

This data equips us to continue our work in advocating with all levels of Government for their much-needed assistance and policy reform. It will also assist us in collaborating with our community to champion, support and guide the recovery and evolution of a thriving, resilient and inclusive Australian Fashion & Textile Industry.

Again, for those of you who completed the survey, thank you so very much for the time and effort you put into doing so.

And on the 25th of May, we launched our new-look AFC Website presenting a revived AFC Directory featuring Australia’s largest database of industry designers, suppliers & manufacturers as well as our evolved AFC Membership Program aimed at helping our community grow, connect, stay informed and contribute to the future of our industry. Please join us.

Finally, I would like to acknowledge our colleagues, Members and extended community in Victoria who are enduring the hardships caused by yet another lockdown. I sincerely hope that tonight’s lifting of some of the restrictions will be the beginning of the end of these trying days for you.

With this said, I invite you to read this month’s Newsletter full of industry updates and news. Thank you.


Leila Naja Hibri

CEO | Australian Fashion Council

Afterpay Australian Fashion Week: A momentous week for the Australian Industry

With the close of Afterpay Australian Fashion Week (AAFW), we recap on the first physical fashion week held globally after the impact of COVID-19. With a mixture of digital shows, runways, presentations and talk panels, the five day schedule was an insight into the current state of the Australian industry and showcased the resilience local designers have ensued amidst the turbulent 2020/21.

The week started on a high-note with the launch of our industry report commissioned to EY and supported by Afterpay, which highlighted the The Economic Contribution of Australia’s Fashion and Textile Sector. The report delivered some astounding insights including the $27.2 bn contribution the fashion and textile industry has to the Australian economy.


“Afterpay Australian Fashion Week is the centerpiece of our industry, and celebrates the spirit and ingenuity of our designer community. This week will see the industry at its best, while delivering the economic benefit of the most important marketing event of the year for the Australian fashion industry.”

- IMG Vice President-Managing Director, Fashion Events and Properties Asia-Pacific, Natalie Xenita


For the first time in Australian Fashion Week history, the schedule opened with a 65,000-year-old custom: a Welcome to Country and smoking ceremony by the Gadigal people. This tribute and consideration to our Indigenous community extended throughout the week - on day three we saw First Nations Fashion Design present a standing ovation worthy runway. With a performance from Muggera dance troupe, FNFD displayed an all-Indigenous fashion showcase curated by Cairns-based Meriam Mer woman Grace Lillian Lee. The show put a spotlight on the role that Indigenous culture plays in Australian fashion and design for over 200 years with a colourful and meaningful display of design techniques that have been used by Indigenous people for generations.


"It's a very momentous occasion for us as First Nations people to be really hitting the ground and showcasing how beautiful and rich our country is not only through our textiles but also through our beautiful models."

- Director, First Nations Fashion & Design, Grace Lillian Lee


In conjunction with the theme of inclusivity of AAFW, taking place on a day of national significance, Mabo Day, Indigenous Fashion Projects presented their runway on day four featuring six Indigenous designers including AFC member MAARA Collective. The runway established the immense talent among our indigenous designers and set in place the significance of their culture and heritage.

Continuing on with day four, our Fashion as a Force for Change talk took place onsite at AAFW. Supported by City of Sydney, this engaging session explored the impact the fashion industry has had and how we can use positive change to build a more ethical, sustainable and inclusive industry. Guest speakers included Mary Lou Ryan (Director of Sustainability & Supply Chain and Co-Founder, Bassike), Grace Lillian-Lee (Director, First Nations Fashion & Design), Leila Naja Hibri (CEO, Australian Fashion Council), Grace Forrest (Founding Director, Walk Free), and Rosanna Iacono (Advisor & Partner, The Growth Activists).



“This fashion week, let's demand change from our position as creators, buyers and business owners. As consumers, let’s make sure businesses know we care and we won’t invest in exploitation. And for the brands and shops that sell them, it's time to stop talking - greenwashing - and start acting. Real transparency, visibility, accountability and action to protect people at every level of your supply chain

- Founding Director, Walk Free, Grace Forrest 


This engaging and insightful session hit the hard topics that as an industry are not being talked about enough. A special thank you to our incredible panel and all guests that attended. We have walked away from the talk with a new perspective and a renewed focus on the ways in which we can do better and be better.

In collaboration with ORDRE and IMG, we presented a special AAFW edition of AFC Virtual to further support Australian brands during the AAFW and beyond. Selected designers were invited to join the AAFW edition of AFC Virtual on ORDRE which will continue to run through to 15th July 2021, with a focus on presenting and selling women’s Resort ‘22 collections to domestic and international retail buyers.

Lastly, we would like to celebrate the AFC members that showed at AAFW. The diversity, inclusiveness and quality of design showcased the incredible talent within the Australian industry. The AFC members included: Alice Mccall, Bondi Born, Commas, First Nations Fashion Design, House of Campbell, Indigenous Fashion Projects, Macgraw and Manning Cartell.

High Fashion to High Vis | The Economic Contribution of Australia’s Fashion & Textile Sector

The report titled High Fashion to High Vis: The Economic Contribution of Australia’s Fashion and Textile Sector is the most comprehensive study of the entire fashion and textile ecosystem in Australia. It shifts the focus from consumer trends towards the industry’s economic and workforce contribution, its current challenges, and what will shape its future development. 


The report has delivered some astounding figures on the value of the Australian fashion and textile industry including:  

- It contributes more than $27.2 bn to the Australian economy*

- It employs 489,000 Australians (315,000 full time) - more than mining, utilities, or the arts and recreation industries

- It generates $7.2 bn in export revenue, totalling 1.7% of all Australian exports, more than double the value of wine and beer exports

- It creates opportunities for women, with 77% of the workforce female, compared to the national average of 47%


While the industry was able to weather the worst effects of COVID-19 with a strong shift towards online sales, the research shows leading industry challenges being rising business costs and supply chain volatility. For future growth, areas of continued focus for the industry will be responsible, circular business models where sustainable sourcing and recycling are paramount. 


“This ground-breaking report highlights the true economic clout of our dynamic and diverse industry. Until now, the comprehensive value of the industry’s economic contribution – and its predominantly female workforce – has not been fully recognised. Now we can better understand the impact of this sector’s significant role in Australia’s creative economy, and the substantial potential of its future.”

- AFC CEO, Leila Naja Hibri 

The full report can be accessed here:

From High Fashion to High Vis: The Economic Contribution of Australia’s Fashion and Textile Industry

* All figures 2020-21

AFC Virtual on ORDRE | AAFW Edition

Selected designers have been invited to join the AAFW edition of AFC Virtual on ORDRE which will run from the first day of AAFW, 31st May, through to 15th July 2021, with a focus on presenting and selling women’s Resort ‘22 collections to domestic and international retail buyers. A number of designers presenting new season collections on schedule at AAFW will also be presenting within AFC virtual showrooms on ORDRE.


The brands include; Aaizel, Akira, Bondi Born, Et Cetera Woman, Ginger & Smart, Manning Cartell, Maara Collective, Nicola Finetti, Replica Project, Romance Was Born and Shona Joy, with more to be announced soon.


With restrictions on international travel still in place due to COVID, virtual showrooms are an essential channel for Australian designers to carry on conducting their global wholesale business effectively. 


AFC Virtual on ORDRE was established at the height of the pandemic to allow AFC members to continue to manage and grow their wholesale business virtually when the world’s fashion weeks and physical showrooms were in lock down. The program has been successful building relations with Australian designers and retailers globally and contributing to high volumes of wholesale orders from both international and domestic retailers.


“The industry has had to quickly adapt to managing the business of fashion virtually over the past 12 months and with many international retailers still not able to physically attend AAFW the AFC Virtual on ORDRE program maximises the commercial opportunities for wholesale collections presented this year at AAFW”

- Simon P Lock, Founder & CEO of ORDRE


As the industry recovers from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, the various costs of content production, virtual showrooms, retailer engagement, social media, and training have been underwritten by the, IMG, AFC and ORDRE to ensure that designers can participate with subsidised costs.


“The AFC is proud to join forces with IMG and ORDRE to present an exciting new chapter of AFC Virtual on ORDRE. The original program was initiated to enable designers to reach buyers at a time when in-person presentations and travel were not possible. This new iteration in collaboration with AAFW is a natural progression for AFC Virtual on ORDRE. It brings together the best in both digital and showroom b2b representation to deliver an innovative omni-channel platform for Australian brands”

- Leila Naja Hibri, CEO, Australian Fashion Council


The AFC Virtual showrooms are powered by interactive digital content and included in the program is the option for designers to enrich their virtual showroom experience with ORB360° imagery. ORB360° technology has been developed by ORDRE to assist buyers in viewing every aspect and detail of a fashion garment or product online.


“IMG is committed to supporting Australian designers to achieve economic success both domestically and overseas. The Afterpay Australian Fashion Week edition of AFC Virtual on ORDRE will complement AAFW’s live events to increase trade outcomes for Australian fashion designers and reach new customers globally.”

- Natalie Xenita, Vice President-Managing Director of IMG Fashion Events and Properties, Asia Pacific



Clare Press launches Wardrobe Crisis Academy

We are excited to announce the launch of Wardrobe Crisis Academy. The first course is ‘Sustainable Fashion 101’, an introductory 6-week course that teaches all things sustainability. The AFC together with Arch and Hook have joined forces to present this learning course which delivers a thorough basic knowledge of the issues driving sustainable and ethical fashion today and what’s being done to solve them.

Joined by international industry experts, Clare Press takes the role of instructor to teach the courses core themes of workers, environment, materials and waste. 

Delivered in an engaging mixed media format online, with videos, audio presentations, journal prompts and even meditations, it’s designed to appeal broadly. Perfect for anyone who’s not a sustainability expert, from retail staff and PRs through to founders and managers.

The course concludes with going inwards and asking what the learner can do with inspiration? How will you apply what you've learned and workshopped to your own life and work, and to the fashion industry more broadly? To conclude this course, you'll get essential tools, guidance to write your action plan along with a certificate of completion.

The course launches May 20, with new content published each week and bonus live lessons. 

Wardrobe Crisis Academy are offering AFC Members an exclusive offer on the ‘Sustainable Fashion 101’ course. Members will receive free access to this course for 2021.


How to access

Members can access this offer via the Member Perks page on the AFC website, by logging into the member portal. If you are not currently an AFC member and would like to join, you can do so here.


About Clare Press

Clare Press is the founder of THE WARDROBE CRISIS. A Sydney-based journalist, filmmaker, author and presenter, she created the Wardrobe Crisis podcast in July 2017. Clare also produces and co-hosts the Ethical Fashion podcast with UN officer Simone Cipriani.

Along with being appointed Vogue’s first ever sustainability editor, Press also sits on the advisory board for Fashion Revolution, Copenhagen Fashion Week’s Sustainability board and is a global ambassador for the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s Make Fashion Circular initiative.

AFC Launches New Membership Program

The AFC has spent the last 12 months working hard on revitalising the AFC website, membership program and the AFC Directory (formerly TFIA Directory). With a renewed and evolved focus, we are very excited to share with you that the new AFC Membership Program is now live!

The AFC Membership Program is here to help you grow your business, connect with a professional network, stay informed and contribute to the future of a sustainable and innovative fashion & textile industry. By becoming a member, you will be joining the peak body for the Australian Fashion and Textile Industry. 

After a tumultuous 2020, the AFC spent time identifying the gaps and opportunities within the Australian Fashion & Textile Industry. By doing so we have developed a stronger, and more connected support network to help benefit our members.

As a member, you will have access to a number of exciting new benefits, including:

- AFC Toolkits - Access AFC member-only resources, toolkits and webinar recordings in an open source platform. Discover best practice advice across sustainability and responsible practice, export, innovation, business essentials and more.

- Member Perks - Access exclusive membership benefits offered by our trusted Affiliate Partner network. These benefits include complimentary sessions, reduced rate services, and discounted tickets to select industry and partner events.

- Support Indigenous Fashion & Textiles - Contribute to the AFC’s newly created Indigenous Fashion Fund (IFF). 5% of all membership fees will be accrued to the IFF and will be allocated by the AFC’s Board of Directors to selected Indigenous fashion & textile organisations.

- Premium AFC Directory Listing - The AFC Directory allows industry to search Australia's largest database of designers, suppliers & manufacturers. Members are highlighted as a premium listing, allowing you to be more easily discovered by your peers and industry.

Discover more AFC Member benefits, and how to apply, by heading to our Member page. Read more about the AFC’s 2021 initiatives by visiting our Strategy page.

We look forward to helping our community grow and for you to join us on this new, exciting chapter of the AFC.





Guided by the principle- ‘beautiful things made better’, NATALIJA designs timeless clothes to be worn effortlessly by modern women. With collections designed and made locally, what better way to celebrate the launch of the most recent collection than showcasing at a beautiful pop up space at The Rocks, Sydney.

Originating from one woman’s vision of providing uncomplicated, stylish pieces made from natural fibres, NATALIJA is celebrated for crafting quality garments with a classic aesthetic.

Since the brand was founded 5 years ago it has grown a loyal community of women who share the same love for timeless style and ethically made fashion. Never before have we had an opportunity to connect with these women in a standalone space, which makes this event quite special.

An initiative lead by the Australian Fashion Council, the concept store is an opportunity to celebrate the brand’s message of ‘beautiful things made better’.

Honouring quality over quantity, collections are designed with a commitment to providing long wearing garments made as sustainably as possible. We are proud to support local craftsmanship, every garment is produced fairly using low-impact materials with a manufacturer accredited by Ethical Clothing Australia.

The collections will be accompanied in store by collaborators who share NATALIJA’s philosophy of mindfully acquiring timeless, classic pieces that are made with care. NATALIJA’s newly released summer collection will be available of course, the highlight of this season being our extended size offering.

You’re invited to explore the very first NATALIJA concept space, open 23rd November to 24th December.

Tuesday to Sunday, 10am - 4pm.

With extended hours Thursday and Saturdays.

119 George Street, The Rocks, Sydney 2000

Meet Jenny Child


Partner at McKinsey and Company, Jenny Child leads the consumer and retail work in Australia and New Zealand and supports consumer-facing clients to drive growth in today’s disruptive and fast-changing consumer environment. She has more than 14 years of consumer sector experience across North America, Australia, and New Zealand; supporting clients to transform their businesses through customer-centricity, agile ways of working, and resetting culture.

Jenny leads the Australian edition of the annual ‘State of Fashion’ report, produced in partnership with Business of Fashion. She also sponsors McKinsey’s gender, diversity, and inclusion work in the Asia-Pacific region, and co-authored McKinsey’s ‘Women in leadership: Lessons from Australian companies leading the way’ report.


Meet Stuart McCullough


Stuart McCullough is the managing director of Woolmark and chief executive of the Australian Wool Innovation, a not for profit association of 25,000 wool growers. McCullough has twenty years of experience in the industry and has held a variety of roles at the AWI. Prior to becoming chief executive McCullough had been responsible for leading strategic development, transition, establishment and growth of several AWI business units as well as core initiatives. McCullough has been instrumental to the association’s efforts to bring attention to the fibre and underline its uses in the fashion industry and its rightful role in the luxury market.


Meet Carla Woidt


Carla Woidt is currently consulting with Camilla. Previously, Carla was GM of Design Operations and Innovation at Country Road, where she managed teams across all divisions within Country Road involved in the technical and development side of the business; tech, knit, fabric and textile design. She integrated across team such as design and development to enable innovation. Carla was SVP Product Development at Theory and Helmut Lang (NY based) where she held a similar role. Carla also worked as Product Director at Temperley London, managing the design, development and production teams.


Meet John Condilis


John Condilis is the Chairman/Co-Founder of Nobody Denim. With over 30 years experience in the denim industry, he is passionate about growing our communities within our industry through technology, skills and training, as well as reestablishing the high value add clothing manufacturing industry in Australia. The Nobody story began with a small, family-built denim laundry in the backstreets of Melbourne in 1999. Founded on the belief that making jeans could be imbued with integrity and creativity, Nobody Denim has continued to go from strength to strength.

Meet Simon Stewart


Simon Stewart is the Founder and Managing Director of Stewart & Heaton Clothing Co. Pty Ltd (S&H). Established in 1991, S&H is a leading supplier of Specialist Apparel and Total Apparel Management(TAM) services to industry and government. The company has a national focus and whist headquartered in WA, S&H has offices and warehouses in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Canberra and Brisbane. Prior to establishing the business, Simon was a senior marketing executive in the Oil and Gas sector followed by a period owner/managing a fine wool sheep enterprise in Western Victoria.


Meet Robyn Healy


Professor Robyn Healy has been Head of the School of Fashion and Textiles at RMIT since 2014. She has worked at RMIT since 2006 and has held roles in the School of Architecture and Design and the School of Fashion and Textiles from lecturer, program manager, HDR Director, and Deputy Head of Research. She was a curator for fashion and textiles departments at both the NGV and NGA. Robyn holds an elected position as Chair of IFFTI (International Foundation of Fashion Technology Institutes) an organisation that represents international fashion education institutions, committed to advancing education and research through exchange and collaboration with industry on a global scale.

Meet Glen Schlehuber


Glen Schlehuber has spent over 25 years working with internationally renowned jeweller Tiffany & Co. in the USA, UK, Australia & New Zealand. For the past 15 years, Glen has held the position of Vice President & Managing Director for the ANZ region, where he leads a highly successful multi-channel sales organisation and works across a variety of areas such as sales, marketing, finance, operations, logistics, merchandising, business development and sustainability.

Meet Adam Lloyd


Adam Lloyd, 3 years as COO at Industrie Clothing, one of the most loved menswear brands in Australia. Adam has more than 27 years experience as a ragtrader, spanning across specialty retail and large scale department stores including Jeans West, Myer and Harris Scarfe. Over the course of his career, Adam has gained invaluable experience across a wide range of functions including design, buying, merchandising, ethical sourcing and sustainability. He became a Board member of the Council of Textile & Fashion in 2014, where he uses his wealth of knowledge and experience to bring about positive change within the garment manufacturing industry.


Meet Yatu Widders-Hunt


Yatu is a descendant of the Dunghutti and Anaiwan peoples of the Northern Tablelands of NSW. She has a strong background in government and has worked across portfolios including Indigenous Affairs, mental health and sustainability. Yatu currently works as a Director at Indigenous social change agency, Cox Inall Ridgeway, where she leads major projects across PR, research and community engagement.

Yatu has also worked as a consultant and media professional for a range of Indigenous media outlets including National Indigenous Television and the Koori Mail. She is the founder of online community @ausindigenousfahsion which uses Instagram and Facebook to showcase Australia’s thriving Indigenous fashion industry. Yatu regularly speaks on issues of culturally led approaches to design, ethical engagement and the intersection between art and culture.


Meet Justin Cudmore


Justin Cudmore is a commercial lawyer with many clients involved in the FMCG and retail sectors. Having spent ten years practising law in Canberra, Justin is a partner with Sydney firm Marque Lawyers and specialises in privacy, sponsorship agreements, distribution and manufacturing, service agreements and the Personal Properties Securities Act. Justin holds positions on multiple boards including commercial and charitable organisations. Justin has worked with numerous fashion brands from emerging through to established corporates.


Meet Edwina McCann


Edwina McCann is the Editorial Director of Vogue Australia, Vogue Living and GQ Australia. Highly respected in the industry with a strong fashion background and extensive media experience, Edwina is responsible for the Vogue Australia brand across print and digital platforms. With 20 years’ experience in the luxury fashion market, Edwina joined Vogue Australia from ACP Magazines where she was editor of Harper’s Bazaar for three years. Prior to that she was the fashion features director for Grazia; fashion features director for the Weekend Australian and WISH magazines; and spent over eight years with The Australian newspaper as fashion editor.

Designers Abroad Paris Showroom, March 2016

Last week, the Australian Fashion Chamber opened its four-day Australian Designers Abroad Showroom in Paris, showcasing seven of Australia’s finest fashion designers to international media and buyers. Hosted as part of the city’s Fall 16 Ready-To-Wear Fashion Week, the Showroom was open from 6 – 9 March, 2016.
The Showroom includes a mix of established and emerging Australian fashion talent, namely: Bianca Spender, Christopher Esber, Ginger & Smart, Rebecca Vallance, Romance Was Born, Tome and STRATEAS.CARLUCCI. Representing the diverse nature of Australian fashion talent, the designers were chosen based on their industry skill, strength of their current seasonal collection and potential success in the international market.

“Year on year, the Australian Designer Abroad Showroom continues to gain momentum, with an incredible pool of talented designers again showcasing their work. The Australian Fashion Chamber is proud to project a positive and contemporary image of Australia in the fashion capital of the world and we feel strongly this opportunity has the potential to expand their businesses globally,” said Australian Fashion Chamber Chair Edwina McCann.

The launch of the showroom was celebrated with a Saturday evening (5 March 2016) cocktail party, attended by the who’s who of Australian and international fashion. Styled by Mikey Ayoubi, seven models graced the Showroom dressed in a key look from each designer, showcasing Australia’s leading creative talents to the guests. Guests sipped on prestigious Janz sparkling wine, the purest water from Cape Grim in Tasmania and Nant whiskey and listened to Jonny Seymour and Paul Mac of Stereogamous.

Attendance ranged from the established stalwarts of the industry such as fashion writer Tony Glenville, fashion news director Mark Holgate from US Vogue, and to the new industry titans like Gabriele Hackworthy from Net A Porter, Fiona Young from Chanel and costume designer Alice Babage, Digital Influencers Zanita Whittington, Margaret Zhang and Amanda Shadforth of Oracle Fox also joined. Australian designers Toni Matichevski and Akira Igosawa came to support their fellow designers.

The Australian Designers Abroad Showroom has received the support of the Australian government through the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s Cultural Diplomacy Program. During the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the Australian Fashion Chamber and the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Minister for Foreign Affairs the Honorable Julie Bishop described the opportunities provided by the showroom to be “unlimited.”

AMP Capital Shopping Centres’ Head of Marketing, Belinda Daly, said “AMP Capital Shopping Centres is very proud to support the Australian fashion industry through our work with the AFC, among other initiatives. The Designers Abroad program enables us to provide a platform for talented local designers to grow their brands and find success in overseas markets.”

The Australian Designers Abroad initiative serves to highlight talented Australian designers in key international markets, and support Australian designers to grow their businesses globally. This showroom is the third Australian Designers Abroad event in Paris, specifically selected as the city attracts a wide variety of international retailers, media and key industry players.


BT Emerging Designer Award, 2016 Finalists

BT Finalists 2016

BT Finalists 2016

BT Financial Group together with the Australian Fashion Chamber is pleased to announce labels Haryono Setiadi, macgraw and Pageant as the finalists for the 2016 BT Emerging Fashion Designer Award. With the first prize valued at $50,000, the winner will be announced at the BT Runway for Success event on 7 April 2016, with all three finalists presenting their collections alongside some Australia’s most successful designers.

2016 marks the fourth year for one of Australia’s most prestigious fashion design awards and this year’s winner will join the ranks of previous recipients Emma Mullholland (2015) Michael Lo Sordo (2014) and Christopher Esber (2013).

2015 BT Emerging Fashion Designer Award winner Emma Mullholland said: “It’s been an exciting year for me since winning the BT Award. It has raised my profile in this highly competitive industry and the financial advice I’ve received from BT has given me the confidence that I am building a solid business for the future.”

This year’s Award provides the winning designer with a $10,000 cash grant, two years of financial planning services provided by BT Financial Group; two return flights to Los Angeles courtesy of Virgin Australia to further their fashion ambitions; backstage hair services for one major fashion event and two look books by TONI&GUY; a one year subscription with new media content business Flaunter; an Australian Fashion Chamber membership and a mentoring session with a fashion industry icon provided by the Australian Fashion Chamber, bringing the total value of the prize to $50,000.

The award has been an important initiative for BT Financial Group, providing it with a platform to support emerging talent to reach their full potential by investing in and mentoring the growth of Australian designers. BT has been assisting Australians establish and grow their businesses since 1969 and has supported its clients by helping them become better investors, showing them how to grow and protect their wealth to secure their future.

BT is proud to continue their partnership with the Australian Fashion Chamber as an organisation that promotes the growth of Australian design talent and the strengthening of the Australian fashion economy on a local and global scale.

The judges for this year’s award include a host of industry experts including Vogue Australia Editor-in-Chief and Australian Fashion Chamber Chairman Edwina McCann; Designers Sarah-Jane Clarke and Lee Mathews; Entrepreneur Lindy Klim; and Westpac Chief Compliance Officer & Group General Counsel Rebecca Lim.

MBFWA Announces Preliminary Designer Line Up for Its Inaugural Season of Resort Collections



Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia (MBFWA) has announced the preliminary designer line up for its inaugural season of Resort Collections. The event will be the first centralised fashion week that focusses on exclusively Resort Collections, to line up with the international retail calendar.

Over 55 designers will be showcasing their collections in Sydney from Sunday 15th May through to Friday 20th May, 2016.

Australian Fashion Chamber members who will be showcasing collections include: Aje, Akira, Bec & Bridge, Bianca Spender, By Johnny, Christopher Esber, Dion Lee, Emma Mulholland, Ginger & Smart, Jennifer Kate, Macgraw, Manning Cartell, Maticevski, Rebecca Vallance, We Are Kindred, and Yeojin Bae.

AFC member Toni Maticevski will open MBFWA this year for Mercedes-Benz Presents (Maticevski 2015 pictured).

The official schedule is available here.

Applications Open for 2016 September-October Designers Abroad Showroom

AFC Lecture

AFC Lecture

The fourth edition of the Designers Abroad Showroom have officially opened for applications. The AFC will be taking a selection of designers to Paris during S/S 2017/18 season from 27th September - 5th October. Five of these will be established designers with one position being allocated to an emerging designer. The AFC is proud to foster and encourage Australian design talent and to help our best designers enhance their exporting capabilities.

The Australian Fashion Chamber’s Designers Abroad program was established with the goal of promoting the Australian fashion industry by identifying exceptional fashion design talent and by promoting this talent in key international markets.

Applications are open now and close at 6pm on 2nd May 2016. For more information and to apply, download the application here and must be sent to

Macgraw wins the BT Emerging Designer Award 2016

2016 BT Emerging Fashion Designer Award WINNERS Tess and Beth MacGraw photography by Lucas Dawson

2016 BT Emerging Fashion Designer Award WINNERS Tess and Beth MacGraw photography by Lucas Dawson

Sydney-based sisters Tessa and Beth MacGraw took home the 2016 BT Emerging Fashion Designer Award last Thursday night, at a runway event held at Sydney’s Royal Hall of Industries. Congratulations macgraw and well done to the other finalists Haryono Setiadi and Pageant (Official)!

The award was part of the BT Runway For Success event, which saw Australian designers Akira Isogawa, MANNING CARTELL, Carl Kapp,CAMILLA AND MARC, Gary Bigeni, Ginger & SmartCarla Zampatti and Bianca Spender on the runway.

Australia & New Zealand Nominees Announced for the 2016/17 International Woolmark Prize

GD2012 2016_17 IWP Nominee Montages regions_558px ANZ

GD2012 2016_17 IWP Nominee Montages regions_558px ANZ

The Woolmark Company have announced the Australia and New Zealand nominees for the International Woolmark Prize for 2016/17. The regional award will be held on 6 July 2016 in Sydney.

The Australia and New Zealand nominees for the 2016/17 International Woolmark Prize are:

Daniel Avakian – Australia
macgraw – Australia
KACEY/DEVLIN – Australia
Roopa Pemmaraju – Australia
Georgia Alice – New Zealand
Harman Grubiša - New Zealand
Lucilla Gray - New Zealand

Chris Ran Lin – Australia
SHHORN – Australia
AMXANDER – Australia

Eighty designers have been selected from 62 countries to participate in this year’s award, which showcases the superb qualities of Australian Merino wool.

Six regional events will be held during June and July in Hong Kong, Milan, Mumbai, New York, London, and Sydney. Nominees will present one look in Merino wool and a six-piece capsule concept to industry experts for the chance to represent their region at the final awards.

Twelve finalists will each receive a AU$50,000 financial contribution towards their next collection and an invitation to participate in the international finals.

The winners of the menswear and womenswear finals will receive a further AU$100,000 to assist with fabric sourcing and marketing of their collection along with invaluable mentoring from industry experts. In addition, both international winners will have the opportunity to have their collection distributed through prestigious international retail partners including Harvey Nichols in the UK, Saks Fifth Avenue in New York, David Jones in Australia, Boutique 1 in the UAE, Verso in Belgium, LECLAIREUR in Paris, Boon the Shop in South Korea, The Papillion in Indonesia and online through (womenswear) and (menswear).


Screen Shot 2016-05-15 at 9.09.05 pm

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Source: Getty Images, Lisa Maree Williams
The biggest event of the Australian fashion calendar has begun with Australian Fashion Chamber member, Toni Maticevski showcasing his 2017 Resort collection tonight, officially opening Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Australia.

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Source: Getty Images William West

True to Maticevski's style, models were adorned with his signature billowing silhouettes teamed with jewellery, handcuffs and gags designed by Ryan Storer.

Take a closer look at tonight's opening show, check out this intimate interview with Toni by Contouring.

For a full line up of this year's MBFWA Resort Schedule click here.

MBFWA Resort 17 - DAY 2

Ginger & Smart



Day 2 of MBFWA kicked off with AFC member, Ginger & Smart, showcasing their Resort 17 collection. The collection titled, 'Voyager', saw silhouettes wrapped, folded and layered with hints of relaxed sport elements and swimwear pieces, tied together with oversized sun hats designed by milliner Jonathan Howard.

Yeojin Bae



Victorian based designer, Yeojin Bae celebrated her 10th Fashion Week show with her collection, 'Contemplation' which featured refined tailoring, sophisticated colour palette and distinct silhouettes. With her signature style of double crepe sheath dresses - a celebrity favourite around Spring Racing season - Yeojin added looser shapes, exaggerated feminine sleeves with sporty features.

Rebecca Vallance



Launched in 2011, Rebecca Vallance namesake label showed at Paris and New York in previous years, however this year has made her MBFWA debuted launching a evening wear range. True to Vallance's style, the collection features ruffles, lace, black leather and hints of silver highlights combined with a distinct black, white and yellow colour palette.




Design Duo Edwina Robinson and Adrian Norris, presented Aje's Resort 16/17 Collection, 'Apocalyptic Paradise', a conceptual look into their childhood home state of Queensland. 'Apocalyptic Paradise' featured muted hues and embellished denim separates and is said to represent the 'preconceived notions of Queensland as a cultural wasteland'. Models were adorned in Blundstone boots contrasted against flowy frilled dresses and skirts, ballooning silhouettes toughened with denim and leather pieces.

Dion Lee



AFC member, Dion Lee, closed Day 2 of MBFWA with his Resort 17 Collection, set in a glass atrium on top of One Bligh at the Bloomberg's building. Against the Sydney night sky, the venue provided a dramatic backdrop to Dion's glass inspired collection, which featured innovative glass fabrics, created using crocheted glass crystals. Dion's signature sculptural style was evident throughout the collection, with a mixture of monochrome and accents of pale lemon colour featured across deconstructed jackets, half undone dresses, and free light ensembles perfect for the resort season.

MBFWA Resort 17 - DAY 3

Manning Cartell



Source: Getty Images

Manning Cartell began MBFWA Day 3 in a spectacular location - beneath the Sydney Harbour Bridge. The Resort 16/17 Collection, 'Diaphonous', has been described as 'utility meet feminity' featuring bold yellows and reds, mixed with graphic stripes, rich textures and lots of layers. Merging modern romanticism with industrial elements.

By Johnny



Source: Getty Images

By Johnny debuted his Resort 16/17 collection with every variation of monochrome at the corner of Blacksmith's Workshop. A spectacular set featured a giant igloo against the concrete backdrop which saw models adorned in off-the-shoulder pieces, asymmetric hemlines and oversized yet feminine pieces, his celebrity following has come to love.




Source: Getty Images

Following their win at the BT Emerging Designer's Award, sister duo Beth and Tessa Macgraw showcased their Resort 16/17 collection, inspired by French royalty. The collection featured their signature lace aesthetic with an ensemble of bold colours, velvet textures, tiered ruffled tops and dresses with bows.

Bec & Bridge



Source: Getty Images

The Bec & Bridge Resort 16 collection by design duo Becky Cooper and Bridget Yorston featured 40-45 RTW and swimwear looks. Described as "a dichotomy of structured woven fabrics and fluid silks, metallic ombre and Indian cottons". The collection is inspired by a recent trip to India and is described as an indian midsummer night's dream. True to their style the collection showcased sleek, contoured lines and smooth feminine silhouettes with main themes of trousers, cold shoulder dresses and cinched waists.

Christopher Esber

MBFWA Christopher Esber

MBFWA Christopher Esber

Source: Flaunter Media, Tim da Rin

Set in One Hot Yoga at Potts Point, Christopher Esber's Resort 17 collection drew inspiration from desert landscapes and Rick Joy's architectural structures.  With a sandy and natural colour palette, the collection is described as a desert oasis, combining structure, utility and fluidity featuring precious dainty evening wear elements in Swarovski crystals. Combining nature and its elements, the collection is said to be about the "trouser and going back to workwear".




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Fashion darling, Akira Isogawa has been known for his east-meets-west aesthetic which took centre stage for his Resort 17 collection on Day 3 of MBFWA. Akira's Resort 17 collection embraced gender fluid silhouettes with models in loose-fitting ensembles, oversized shirting, tunics with wide-legged trousers and true to his style, some overlaid with sheer organza.

Bianca Spender



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Tailored silhouettes, cascading hems and pops of colour filled the Bianca Spender Resort '17 runway show.

Taking inspiration from traditional menswear silhouettes, Spender mixed these with sleek and slinky cuts and fabrics, in strong earthy colours. The addition of RM Williams boots gave for a grounded Australiana vibe.

Jennifer Kate



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Jennifer Kate's Resort '17 runway models entered through a sparkling forest-like setting dressed in hand-painted leather, red suede and relaxed, yet boxy silhouettes. Held off-site at the Entertainment Quarter, the eerie forest-like setting played host to a show that played with a tailored silhouettes accented with unique prints and resort-ready fabrics.

Alice McCall



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Playful cuts, delicate lace and a pretty pastel palette set the tone for the Alice McCall's showcase. McCall transformed the bustling restaurant Porteno in Surry Hills into a cheeky boudoir, with each corner of the upstairs room transformed into a makeshift photoshoot. Models lounged on chairs or shimmied about in Chantilly lace and cute rompers reminiscent of the 60s and 70s.

MBFWA Resort 17 - DAY 4

Romance Was Born



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Designer Duo, Luke Sales and Anna Plunkett, kicked off day 4 of MBFWA at the waterfront Carthona House in Darling Point. Romance Was Born's Liberace-inspired collection called 'Whispering Angel' showcased loud and intricate prints, paired with ruffles, velvet, fringed and quirky fabrics. From the colourful makeup, with models adorned in red painted cupid bow lips, bejewelled teardrops and pastel eyeshadow, and exuberant hair to the quirky styling - redefined fashion as art.

We Are Kindred



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Sydney based, We Are Kindred, was feminine, floral and flirty showcasing tiered chiffon day dresses, metallic floral high waisted shorts and pink floral jumpsuits. With boho vibes, the collection featured muted and a sophisticated colour palette with standout pieces including a white and gold floor length dress, a pink embellished mini and a low cut maroon dress.




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Kit Willow Podgornik return to fashion week, debuted her new fashion line KitX at the Paddington Reservoir. To add to the atmosphere, the former reservoir was acoustically charged with live classical string musicians and Sneaky Sound System's Connie. A sustainable clothing line, KitX showcased a highly wearable collection with flattering drape, and fluid lounge wear inspired ensembles. Models completed their looks with leather corsets combined with over-the-knee snakeskin boots.

Emma Mulholland



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Emma Mulholland's intergalactic Resort 17 collection was an ode to iconic musicians David Bowie and Prince. Comic and retro-inspired, Mulholland launched the audience into the Space Age with her signature eye-catching style with an infusion of popping 60s colours, bold illustrated prints and intricate beaded fabrics - giving the collection a unique aesthetic.




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Tome's Resort '17 collection featured well-tailored trench coats, floral printed jumpsuits and bold mustard yellow designs. As always, a casually cool aesthetic was evident with models flowing effortlessly from pool to bar in elegant black dresses, finished with crisp white button-up shirts paired with asymmetric skirts.

MBFWA Resort 17 - DAY 5




Source: Vogue Australia

With a bright and early 7am kickoff, Camilla Franks hosted her African inspired Resort 17 Collection aboard luxury super yacht 'The Seadeck' on Sydney Harbour. Inspired by her recent travels to Africa,


's collection 'Jambo Jambo!' featured her signature bold and colourful aesthetic across kaftans, dresses, swimwear, childrenswear, boardies for men and custom made to order surfboards. The collection was a nod to 'the vibrancy of colour, the beauty of the land and the spirit of the people' with models adorned in beaded bikinis, tribal prints and traditional beaded Masai collars.

Check out the whole collection below:

We Are Handsome



Source: Vogue Australia

Husband and wife duo,

We Are Handsome

were up next at Carriageworks showcasing their new resort, leisure and swimwear collection with an eighties-inspired theme. The show also embraced new technology by streaming live online in 360 degrees and in virtual reality - allowing fans to experience the show. True to their signature, the collection featured striking digital prints on figure hugging fishnet coverups, high rise bikini bottoms, paired with edgy black lips, heavy makeup and gold high top sneakers.

Have a look at the entire show below:

Only one more day left!

MBFWA Resort 17 - DAY 6

Fashion Design Studio

FDS Innovators

FDS Innovators

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The Fashion Design Studio's Innovators Show features the next generation of young talent to the industry since 1999 and is credited with producing international heavyweights like Dion Lee and Zimmermann. This year was no exception with Jessica Van, Kakopieros by Demetra, Ahmad Taufik, Frederick Jenkyn, Ipsen by Georgie Ipsen, Mandem by Renee Saliba, Oxblood by Wesley McDonough.




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The Raffles International Showcase presented only the highest level of emerging fashion design to come out of Raffles.  The emerging designers included Chaddie, De La Motte, Gemma Saccasan, Iva Pfeiffer, JRAA CODE, Leah Williams, Queency Yustiawan.

Project NextGen



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Project NEXTGEN is a program that connects renowned fashion experts to emerging designers by mentoring them into a thriving career.

Supported by St. George Bank, 50 finalists are narrowed down to six winners who are awarded with a year-long mentorship by St. George Bank Business Advisory. These six hopefuls, aspire to reach the heights of their predecessors and showcased their collections last night which included - Anna Quan, Renee Sealy - Holystone, Jason Hewitt, Roni Cross - Kaliver, Sarah Ryoko Watanabe - Monster Alphabets, Merryn Kelly - Third Form.

Oscar De La Renta



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Oscar De La Renta officially closed Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Australia for 2016, with a stunning collection of florals and the classic de la Renta's aesthetic. The show was opened and closed by New York based Aussie model Shanina Shaik who was featured in a cocktail dress and formal occasion wear mixed with florals, exotic jacquards and lace with a touch of 60s glamour.




As the global fashion industry is starting to realise the significance of film as a necessary creative tool, a fashion film featuring Australian talent has emerged featuring our very own AFC members. 



 a collaborative fashion film by Marie Schuller and Görkem Hayta, features designs by AFC members -

Dion Lee


Toni Maticevski


Romance Was Born


The film debuted at this year's Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia and launched online at 




Directed by highly acclaimed London-based filmmaker

Marie Schuller



is a dark and seductive film that centres around the arrival of three women into a North Sydney house which stirs suspicion amongst the locals. This beautifully curated fashion film is an initiative produced by Paris-based Görkem Hayta, who established her passion for Australia and its design talent whilst working on the 20th Anniversary of MBFWA in 2015.

Not only does the film feature Australian designers, the film was shot on location in Sydney with a local creative team including styling by Mikey Ayoubi, hair by Daren Borthwick for KMS, make up by Peter Beard for Lancôme and production by the Motel Picture Company. The cast includes Lily Nova at IMG, Kirsty and Isabella at FIVETWENTY MGT with special appearances by Donny Benét and Alastair Webster (Shining Bird) as well as actors from McGregor Casting.

Check out the film below:

AFC Seminar: 'Exporting to the US' (April 26, 2017)

In partnership with City of Sydney, the AFC will be hosting its first seminar of the year... 'Exporting to the US'

This seminar will focus on exporting to the US, taking an up close look at Export Market Development Grants (EMDG). The seminar is an excellent opportunity for designers to attend and hear an in depth explanation of grants, exporting and network with contacts who can assist in this area. For more information about the EMDG click here.

The seminar panel will feature designer Natalie Knoll from Bird & Knoll, Stuart Smith from Vebiz and Elena Kirillora from Austrade.


Australian Fashion Chamber Suite 66,Level 1, 66 Oxford Street,Darlinghurst NSW 2011

Wednesday 26 April 2017, 6pm to 7.30pm

RSVP to by Friday 21 April

Australia & New Zealand International Woolmark Prize Nominees announced

From left: Thomas Puttick, Chris Ran Lin, Elissa McGowan, Blair Archibald, Jessica Grubisa and Madeline Harman of Harman Grubisa, Jason Alexander Pang of AMXANDER. Photo by Tim Kindler
International Woolmark Prize nominees for Australia and New Zealand have been announced and include AMXANDER - Australia, Chris Ran Lin – Australia and Blair Archibald - Australia for the Menswear category and Elissa McGowan – Australia, Harman Grubiša – New Zealand and Thomas Puttick – Australia for the Womenswear category. This year the Woolmark Company has introduced the Innovation Award celebrating the creative fabric or yarn development from a finalist.

For more on the nominees visit

Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Australia - Dion Lee Resort 2018

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - MAY 14 Dion Lee Resort 2018 (Photo by Brendon Thorne/Getty Images)

Dion Lee opened Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Australia presenting his Resort 2018 collection held outdoors on the forecourt of the Sydney Opera House. Despite threatening grey skies, the show drew a large crowd of industry heavy weights and international photographers.

Lee's Resort 2018 collection featured a mix of luxe sportswear and deconstructed tailoring, staying true to his aesthetic. Crisp shirting, towelling knits and fluid dressing gown coats were delicately balanced with angular necklines, asymmetric hems and trailing ribbon dresses. Detailing were executed in an intricately laser cut skirt while splices of silk were finely laid over netting.

Alongside womenswear, Lee debuted his menswear capsule range consisting of tailored double breasted blazers, tracksuit pants and slick, laminated rain coats. The navy bomber jacket with chunky hardware zippers was a standout.

A confident collection, worthy of an iconic location, Dion Lee set the (sails) bar high for the week ahead.

Words: Japheth Viceno

Industry Call Out | Australian Sizing Standard Project

Industry Call Out | Australian Sizing Standard Project

We are calling for letters of support for an industry project to address the lack of Australian clothing size standards for men and women.

The ultimate goal of the project is to develop an Australian Sizing Standard with Standards Australia's support.

We need your help to get it all started! Send us a letter of support. 

On letterhead, please include;

  • Your role in the industry and the business you're writing on behalf of
  • Outline any sizing issues relevant to your/your company's position in the industry
  • Tell us why you would support a project that aims to address these/how such a project might benefit you as part of this industry
  • Any other details relevant in voicing your support

Please submit by 25th August to with the subject line "Australian Sizing Standard Project"

Thanks for your support!

australian sizing atandard

! FASHION360 !

! FASHION360 !

CEA's Fashion Accelerator is back and looking to recruit the 2018 group of fashion creatives, committed to driving their labels to the next phase! The team have been working very hard on the new rollout for next year and have just rebranded the program to be called Fashion360.

Thuy Nguyen | CEA's Fashion Development Manager


This structured, high touch program is proudly unique, an Australian-first for the fashion industry that has proven itself over the last couple of years to equip participants with invaluable first-hand information and experiences from numerous fashion industry experts.  

Fashion360 will take early and emerging designers on the journey of building a sustainable fashion business encapsulating it with a 360 degree perspective. Our six-month intensive brings industry mentors from around Australia and the world to support the global development of our participants and their emerging fashion businesses.

Please join us as we continue to support the growth of fashion entrepreneurs from across the country. If you're looking to make your mark in 2018 or know of anyone who might benefit from this hands-on program, please don't hesitate to contact me. Applications are currently open via our website (closing December 17). 

Warm Regards, 
Thuy Nguyen


Applications Open for Fashion360

Australia's premiere fashion accelerator is now taking applications for the 2018 year. Transform your creative concept into a sustainable fashion brand and business with this unique six-month intensive program. 

Just some of the benefits in choosing Australia's only fashion accelerator:

  • Access to core industry mentoring and coaching
  • Network with CEA's diverse community of creative entrepreneurs across a host of events
  • Weekly workshops and masterclasses, access to StitchLab with industrial grade facilities
  • Dedicated desk space with 24-7 secured access

Discover More

The CEA team is looking forward to delivering this wonderful program for the 2018 year. 
Thank you for your interest and support of emerging Australian designers.

QUT CEA Fashion Accelerator
QUT Creative Enterprise Australia
Level 2, Z1 the works, 34 Parer Place via Musk Avenue, Kelvin Grove Q. 4059. | | 07 3337 7801

Garment Labelling with APN


Garment Labelling with APN

Thanks to Pinakin Chaubal from APN Performance Testing for taking us through the ins and outs of labelling for garments at our last Friday Afternoon Session. Didn't make it along? Not to worry. We've got some notes for you here!


Fashion Equipped | Social Media Success Coaching Programme

Fashion Equipped | Social Media Success Coaching Programme

AFC members, Claire Goldsworthy (The Fashion Advocate) and Elizabeth Formosa (Fashion Equipped) have partnered to offer an exclusive learning program: Social Media Success Coaching.

The short course has been designed specifically for fashion businesses and brands, addressing the complex nature of the fashion industry with tailored solutions and practical tools. Eight of ten people now use social media, and over a third of people check their feeds more than five times a day; if you're a fashion brand ignoring social media, you're losing sales and missing opportunities. 


fashion equipped & the fashion advocate


The Social Media Success Coaching programme offers one on one face to face and video mentoring sessions with Claire (The Fashion Advocate), who shares her experience and industry knowledge as one of Australia's Top Influencers and socially-conscious bloggers. The course includes all the workbooks, action plans and industry insider tips and guidelines that you'll need to succeed with social media in the fashion industry. 

The Social Media Success Coaching programme is one of the many courses available through Fashion Equipped, who also offer consultancy, mentoring, and fashion business programmes to brands and businesses who are starting up or struggling with growth. 


Meet The Fashion Advocate


Sound Good? Learn more via the links below:

International Sourcing Expo 2018!


International Sourcing Expo 2018!

It's Back! Returning to Melbourne from Tuesday 20 – Thursday 22 November 2018, the International Sourcing Expo Australia brings the world to you. 

The trade only event is Australia’s leading sourcing platform for the apparel, accessories and textile industry. So - if you’re looking to improve your supply chain, compare costs and services, produce your own label, diversify your brand or source from thousands of products and ranges - this is THE event for you.

DISCOVER first hand new trends in fashion and manufacturing for apparel, textiles, accessories and more...

MEET, compare and connect with international manufacturers, suppliers, agents and industry experts...

ORDER direct from suppliers and rationalise your supply chain...

EXPAND your network and commercial opportunities by connecting with new international industry contacts...

IMPROVE your business offering by sourcing new products and assessing existing and potential suppliers...



With over 600 international exhibitors from 12+ countries, this year's International Sourcing Expo is not to be missed! The trade event is also co-located with the Footwear & Leather show and the China Clothing Textile & Accessories Expo. Save time, money and energy and find international business contacts right here in Melbourne!



Build your sourcing knowledge at the seminar series running over the course of the Expo! Topics include; building a global brand, top sourcing tips, ethical sourcing, colour trends for AW 18.19, protecting your intellectual property and more. 

Bookings are essential. Don't miss out!

Want to know more? Head to their website for all the details:

The MFW Student Award Finalists! (Copy)

Get to Know Some of the MFW Student Award Finalists!

A big congratulations to the Student Award finalists from this year's Melbourne Fashion Week; Hannah Berry, Lucy Broomhall, Navarone Johnson, Nigel Vogler, and to the winner Helena Dong.

The award acknowledges the top five student collections which demonstrate excellence in research and development of fashion design, innovation, construction and potential to contribute to the future growth of the industry. We're thrilled to support the award alongside the City of Melbourne and búl.

This week we catch up with the 4 finalists!

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RMIT, Bachelor of Fashion (Design) (Honours)

WHY FASHION? I had very little interest in fashion until a couple years before moving to Melbourne to study at RMIT. I was really bored one day doing some internet browsing and came across two videos. The first being a presentation of Maison Martin Margiela’s Spring 1998 collection and the other, Alexander McQueen Spring 2007, two designers on pretty opposite ends of the spectrum. The intensities and craftsmanship within those collections intrigued me to the point of wanting to study fashion. Studying at RMIT has allowed me to feed this curiosity through intensive research and the development of technical skills. I tend to get distracted very easily and my mind often wanders off (which you can probably tell from the fragmentation of my work), so fashion and making has come to be a means of therapy for me. Honestly, I find the fashion industry so broad and that fascinates me.

THE COLLECTION | This is an unnamed collection is aimed at bridging the gap between the refined and unrefined within fashion and garment construction. This displayed through the repetition of a uniform, acting as a container for the embellished chaos beneath (the contained). Utilising ‘the cut’ (in reference to Yoko Ono) through performance, the uniform is deconstructed. Creating spillages of the amassed chaos and exposing moments of intense craftsmanship set amongst raw and unrefined construction. The idea of the container and the contained lends its proverbial hand in a couple of ways. First off, the container investigates the packaging of clothing within the context of fashion consumption and the packaging of the uniform (and clothing in general). Further, this idea of uniformity and chaos feeds into my personal experiences and research into autism and autistic personalities. My practice takes a very mindful and considered approach to design, eliminating the toiling process and slowing down the construction of garments through the implementation of drape and use of fabric remnants, allowing for minimal to no waste. This process has been integrated throughout my studies at RMIT and of course my final collection shown at MFW.

WHAT’S NEXT | I feel like my practice brings something fresh to the Australian fashion industry, so following my much deserved summer romance I plan on having over the holidays, I aim to further develop my practice and really broaden my skills through collaboration or possible further study.  So I don’t really see myself leaving Australia anytime soon for an extended period of time. Through doing my honours work I’ve discovered my interest in creative consultancy and direction, curation, styling, photography and apparently I’m not all that bad at doing hair and makeup either. I think I just really like to have most of the creative control when working on a project or at least have my hand in all aspects of the “fashion process”. I think this is really important.

ADVICE | Confidence in your own work is really important. If you’re not convinced by what you’re doing and how you work then how can you expect anyone else to be? MFW was also an incredible experience, as my work sits more within the realm of performance and installation it was interesting to see it within the context of the runway and to witness the audience react to it. Through this experience I learnt that my work had purpose beyond its original intent, so it definitely pays to be open minded.

You can get in touch with Navarone here |



RMIT, Bachelor of Fashion (Design) (Honours)

WHY FASHION? On my 13th birthday all I wanted was a yellow terry towelling dress, some brand new bright white volley sneakers and a sombrero. When I compiled this outfit together I knew fashion was for me…but it really took off from there!!!! Op shops have definitely built my love for eccentric styling and using whatever you can find. Mum, thank you for letting me out of the house in all those ridiculous outfits.

I honestly had no idea what I was getting myself into doing this course, and while initially I was interested in the creative aspects of fashion design, throughout my studies I have become fascinated with the social and environmental impacts of the fashion industry, which has pushed my design practice towards multidisciplinary and activism.

Artist Thomas Hirschhorn once said ‘It is not necessary to publicise not producing—to do so is defensive or selfish, and, for sure, narcissistic’ and I feel this manifests completely with my collection and myself. This collection has allowed me to create a physical representation using fashion narrative and dioramas, of what we are creating through our daily consumer habits. This process brings the issues of our consumer habits to the forefront of what we all participate in: dressing.

THE COLLECTION | My collection is a critique of and my personal reaction to some of the common consumer rituals, processes of mass production, and value systems of the fashion industry. The collection has a broad communication focus, and explores political, philosophical and social ideologies of consumer behaviour. My collection was generated from my own critical compilation of fashion narrative, poetry and experiential dioramas that are compiled from listening in on conversations in shopping malls and my own experience in the industry thus far. These observations and my additional research drove the creation of the wearable artefacts that have unified together as an unconventional collection exaggerating both the humour and ridiculousness of mass consumption.

The aesthetic of my collection questions the significance of materiality in terms of sustainable or unsustainable fashion practices which can lead us to wonder what really makes waste Waste? Through developing my own zero waste techniques, using found and unconventional materials, alongside unwanted purchased fabrics, my collection deconstructs the value systems of the fashion industry by pushing the wearability and usability of fabrics critiquing the purity politics in fashion manufacturing and production.

My collection employs juxtaposition by satirising our daily consumer behaviours such as grocery shopping, buying new shoes, eating etc. I have deliberately paired biodegradable products in plastic and exaggerated the experience of our consumption through creating mass(ive) produced garments and woven electrical cords. This materiality and process symbolises the weight of consumption. Alongside my publications and dioramas, I aim to evoke emotion and question value through referencing our daily routine. This excessively evocative process encourages conversation around our understanding of our own consumption and its role in our daily lives.

WHAT’S NEXT | The horizon currently looks like fishing, fam time and sunsets. However, I would love to further encourage awareness and conversation by involving the public through workshops/publications/installations. I am in awe of the local talent in Melbourne and would love the opportunity to collaborate with local artists to further broaden awareness of the impact of our consumer culture.

ADVICE | This year in particular has taught me to ensure you love what you are doing and that you are excited and passionate!! It’s a bit corny but I think fashion is about staying true to YOU!

For me MFW was surreal. Being able to show my collection to the public and be able to watch people’s reactions to my collection strutting down the runway was incredible, and I got exactly what I wanted: smiles and laughs.  

You can get in touch with Hannah here |

lucy broomhall


The Masters Institute of Creative Education, Advanced Diploma of Fashion, Design & Merchandising

WHY FASHION? I’ve always sewn my own clothes, even as a little girl. When I turned 18 I moved to Melbourne from country Vic and worked in costume. Sewing and pattern making is my passion, I have just always loved it.

THE COLLECTION | My collection named ‘Deadair’ is my look at the women's movement and how women have been oppressed throughout history, contrasted by what I see women to be. I drew inspiration from birds, as they represent freedom. Mushrooms, the layers and conditions they grow in. I also looked at metal for inspiration on all the forms it can take and yet still remain strong and undestroyed, regardless of its treatment.

I used different silks and tules, with these fabrics I layered them and created my feathers. I also used a faux leather to mold over structure in each outfit.

I used the toiling process to refine my garments and to design and create the perfect piece.

WHAT’S NEXT | Finishing my diploma is really the most exciting thing I’m concentrating on at the moment. I also am working in bridal which is great experience and skill enhancing. I’m hoping in the next few years to expand my own label.

ADVICE | You never stop learning. And be grateful for everything people are willing to teach you.

 You can get in touch with Lucy here |

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WHY FASHION? | It's a way to tell a story. Clearly translated or not, I can personally put meaning to something.

THE COLLECTION | How a dubious cultural thread can shape an identity.

WHAT’S NEXT | Seeking a deeper creativity that surpasses my own understanding.

ADVICE | Question... is it something you need?

Next time, we catch up with the winner… Stay tuned for more!

All images are thanks to the designers, and runway/backstage images by Lucas Dawson.

AFC Members Shaping the Future of Fashion Technology | Flaunter




Gaby Howard, Founder & CEO

We caught up with Gaby Howard, the founder and CEO of Flaunter to hear a bit about where she sees the industry changing and how Flaunter is constantly adapting and challenging the status quo to offer the best service she can to the industry.



Before Flaunter I spent 15 years working in the communications industry with leading brands in the fashion, lifestyle, entertainment and not-for-profit sectors. My first ever PR role followed an internship at MFPR. I worked there for over five years. Maria taught me so much about PR - lessons and experiences I still think about every day.

In 2009 I moved from lifestyle PR into the world of not-for-profit and helped launch one of Australia’s most successful online fundraising initiatives. The Wall of Hands Indigenous literacy campaign was recognised with a United Nations Media Peace Award in 2010, in collaboration with The Sydney Morning Herald.

Looking back, working at a fast-growing charity - smart people with big hearts, a huge vision, extremely limited financial resources but abundant creativity and energy - was exactly like working at a startup. It was the perfect springboard.

Flaunter was launched in 2015. There are now almost 15 of us that make the business tick. From marketing, sales, engineering, UX, design, comms, data science… it’s amazing to see how far things have come. Working with an incredible team, on a product I am 100% invested in is hands-down the best part.

Gaby Howard, Founder & CEO of Flaunter

Gaby Howard, Founder & CEO of Flaunter



Because the team is so diverse, so are the skill sets. But at its core, Flaunter excels at product innovation, communications, data, audience, PR and streamlining workflows.



The current count of brands available on Flaunter is 337. We work with fashion, beauty and interiors brands, and PR agencies. We’ll soon welcome some new categories too, which is really exciting.

a snapshot of the Flaunter platform

a snapshot of the Flaunter platform



Flaunter sits very much in the middle of many different parts of the industry. For us one of the challenges is that EVERYTHING is changing. Nothing, on any level, feels 'certain' anymore. This is both an opportunity and a challenge, for everyone.

I think the greatest challenges when we talk about tech and innovation are: 1. People not adapting fast enough. There are still lots of businesses who aren't experimenting and learning fast enough. We HAVE to try new things, and if something doesn't work - at least you've learnt and it's time to move onto the next thing and 2. People not believing that they can be agents for change - because technology, or being 'technical', isn't their strength.

The next wave of innovation won't be led by engineers. The new disruptor skills will be creative thinking and problem-solving - they will be human-centric.

a snapshot of the Flaunter platform

a snapshot of the Flaunter platform



We're flexible in how we approach problem solving, we talk to our customers and community constantly, we don't get 'stuck' in processes if they aren't working for us, we're open to testing and failing, and then trying all over again.



In the short term - a platform relaunch, global customers and new categories. That should fill a calendar year... or two. The big vision? To entirely transform the way brands 'do' and measure PR.

a snapshot of the Flaunter platform

a snapshot of the Flaunter platform



You just have to get comfortable operating in a constant state of flux. Change happens at such a rapid pace now - it's very much constant and inevitable. Build your business in a way that it can be agile and adaptable. Be open to changing how you do things. Be incredibly aware of the landscape - not just you competitor landscape but the major global trends. Test constantly and always challenge the status-quo.



Head over to the Flaunter website by clicking below.

Copy of Technology in Fashion | May Edit


Technology in Fashion | May Edit

This month we asked Gordon Renouf, CEO of Good On You to list a few must reads related to sustainability and fashion tech.

Good On You has created the world’s most robust and comprehensive public facing method for comparing  fashion brands’ sustainability efforts; Good On You data underpins fashion retailers’ messages to shoppers about which brands are doing better, and powers the Good On You app and website which are heading for more than 2 million users around the world this year.


Here is a short list of what Gordon and the team at GOY have been reading this month!


via Independent

via Independent

Google and Stella team up to create public resource on Sustainable Materials

Last month Google and Stella McCartney announced a significant step forward. They’ve committed to create and share tools to measure the impacts of materials  in specific supply chains, starting with cotton and viscose.


Photo via Mistra Future Fashion

Photo via Mistra Future Fashion

Sustainable Materials Tech can get pretty deep

Meanwhile Mistra Future Fashion has released an extensive survey of the impacts of materials on the environment. One of their conclusions is that the way a material is produced and its location can be more important than qualities of the specific material. They also evaluate whether or not newly emerging sustainable materials will be able to meet the technical requirements of current and future fashion.

Warning: this gets pretty nerdy pretty quickly ...


BlockTexx founders Adrian Jones and Graham Ross, via SmartCompany

BlockTexx founders Adrian Jones and Graham Ross, via SmartCompany

And more on Sustainable Materials Tech: Local Company solves key recycling dilemma

Australian startup Blocktexx is well on the way to solving a key end of life conundrum - how to separate cotton from polyester to allow them both to be recycled.

by Dominic Powell


via Unsplash

via Unsplash

Open-Source Innovation Can Help Transform Fashion

Open source software is often considered on of the most important innovations of the 20th century, but ‘open’ anything doesn’t always sit well with a style and IP based industry like fashion! But proponents of open-source culture - not just software -  say the concept would empower the industry to work together to tackle issues like sustainability as well as enable fashion companies to employ optimal versions of apps and software.

“The open-source model extends beyond software, with some companies embracing the concept of collaboration everywhere from product design and marketing to fabric innovation and hiring.”

by Kathaleen Chen


via The Business of Fashion

via The Business of Fashion

How Retailers Can Help their Customers Find Conscious Brands

Online luxury fashion marketplace Farfetch launched ‘The Conscious Edit’ in April, as part of its goal to help consumers “think, act and choose positively”.

by Ben Sillitoe 




Can Worker Engagement Technology Effectively Supplement Social Audits?

Worker engagement technology has emerged as a potentially useful part of assuring compliance with labour rights standards in the fashion and other supply chains. Can it supplement much critiqued social audits or is it just window dressing?

by Antoine Heuty




Using AI to help consumers manage their wardrobes more effectively

This one is fascinating. Save Your Wardrobe is a new wardrobe management app that uses AI to save you time and money, and help reduce environmental impact at the same time.

by Molshree Vaid



Have a suggestion for our June edition?

Email through your top fashion technology reads to!

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Watch this space and stay tuned for updates. If you’re on WeChat be sure to follow.

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[template] Fashion Business | Edit


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Have a suggestion for our next edition?

Email through your top fashion business reads to!

AFC Covid-19 Rescue Webinar Series, Presented by City of Sydney

AFC Covid-19 Rescue Webinar Series

Presented by City of Sydney

Catch up on some of the Webinar sessions and content below.

MWAH | COVID-19 HR Obligations and Opportunities

With Rhonda Brighton-Hall, Founder of MWAH

Rhonda Brighton-Hall, Founder of MWAH, addressed the HR obligations and opportunities for businesses, in light of Covid-19.

MWAH (Make Work Absolutely Human) are experts in people, simplifying the workplace and helping businesses grow. As a result of the health and economic impacts of COVID-19 and the decisions of Governments locally and around the world, many organisations are currently working on the best possible path through the current context.

Rhonda identified the critically important things businesses should be doing to keep people well, safe and ready to go in the future.

EY | COVID-19 Cash Management Strategies

With David Short, International Tax Partner, and the EY team

David Short, International Tax Partner, and the team from EY addressed cash management strategies and government concessions available for Businesses, including JobKeeper.

EY is a global leader in assurance, tax, transaction and advisory services. The insights and quality services they deliver help build trust and confidence in the capital markets and in economies the world over.

Marque Lawyers | COVID-19 Legal Strategies

With Justin Cudmore, Partner, and Wesley Rogers, Workplace Relations Counsel, from Marque Lawyers

Justin Cudmore, Partner, and Wesley Rogers, Workplace Relations Counsel, from Marque Lawyers, addressed; the mandatory code for retail and commercial leases and how it applies to tenants and landlords, legal issues arising from COVID-19 in supply chains and wholesale/retail contracts, and, employment law relating to the management of staff.

Marque Lawyers is a law firm based in Sydney, which has been advising the fashion industry since its establishment over ten years ago. They take a practical and commercial approach to the management of their clients’ legal affairs.

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McKinsey & Company | COVID-19 Response Strategies - and -

COVID-19 Australian TCF Industry Survey Findings

With Jenny Child, Partner and Thomas Rüdiger Smith, Associate Partner, McKinsey & Company

For the first webinar, Jenny Child and Thomas Rüdiger Smith, McKinsey’s retail and consumer experts, addressed the global crisis of COVID-19, and delved into response strategies for the apparel and fashion sector.

Presenting insights on what this means for leaders in Australia’s apparel and fashion industries; exploring the unique challenges of the COVID-19 situation and how it may unfold, and how leaders can take steps to protect their employees, customers, supply chains and financial results.

The second webinar saw the Findings from the AFC Covid-19 Australian TCF Industry explored with insights supported by McKinsey & Company.



AFC will continue to deliver Industry support through webinar sessions and online events. To keep updated with events and opportunities, subscribe the the AFC Newsletter HERE, and become an AFC Member HERE.

This Webinar Series was Presented by