Melbourne Fashion Fesitval officially kicks off this month and runs until March 5th, featuring over 100 events throughout the city to celebrate Melbourne's vibrant fashion scene. You can anticipate premium runways, pop-up experiences, workshops, industry discussions, and a wealth of creative expressions.
Here, the AFC team has compiled a list of their top must-see events for the week.
Beyond the Seams: Presented by Museums Victoria
Tuesday 5 March, 4:00 pm
This discussion aims to delve into transformative trends and innovative strategies shaping the future of clothing manufacturing in Victoria, where the local fashion and textiles industry is poised for a transition to a circular clothing economy.
Panelists: Marianne Perkovic (Chair of the AFC Board, Craig Heckenberg (Managing Director, Epson Australia) and Dr. Jenny Underwood (Associate Dean of Research and Innovation, RMIT).
Conversations across Culture: Presented by Museums Victoria
Tuesday 5 March, 2:30 pm
This panel discussion will delve into the ethical considerations, opportunities, and challenges surrounding the appropriation of diverse cultures from an alternative perspective.
Panelists: Maggie Zhou (writer and Culture Club podcast co-host), Paul McCann (First Nations designer), Bonnie Mooney (Creative Projects Manager at Social Studio), Shegofa Nasari (Women's Community Advisory Group representative) and Winitha Bonney (Inclusion Thought Leader).
The Next Retail Revolution Presented by Collarts
Wednesday 28 February, 6:00 pm
Collarts will present a live panel discussion exploring the future of fashion retailing and marketing, that emphasises sustainability through the integration of advanced technologies. This event aims to bring together tech innovators, educators and fashion enthusiasts to engage in a conversation on the future of the fashion retail landscape.
Panelists: Debbie Pratt (Educator, Collarts), Pete Smit (CEO, Style Atlas), Anthony Kwok (CEO, Zilio- Virtual Fitting Rooms) and Sharnie Raine (CLO, 3D Consultant).
The Future of Fashion Using the Power of the Consumer
Thursday 29 February, 4:30 pm
RCYCL will present a live panel discussion exploring the hierarchy of fashion purchasing. This event seeks to raise awareness and foster responsibility by addressing each tier of the fashion industry. The conversation will focus on how consumers can contribute to shaping a more sustainable environment in our shopping habits, clothing choices, and personal presentation.
Panelists include representatives from the Seamless Clothing Stewardship Scheme, eBay Australia, and The Salvos Stores.
Community Threads: Afghan Hand Embroidery Workshop Presented by The Social Studio
Saturday 24 February, 2:00 pm
Immerse yourself in an afternoon at The Social Studio, where a skilled artisan from Melbourne's Afghan community will guide you in acquiring traditional Afghan hand embroidery skills. Explore a display of crafted Hazara and Pashtun embroidery, showcasing intricate and beautiful examples of this traditional art form.
Redesigning Waste: Pocket Politics Presented by RMIT
Saturday 2 March - Sunday 3 March, 3:00 pm
Be guided through the process of creating your own Future Archive attachable pocket bag from a fresh selection of the finest textile trash. Learn introductory sewing machine skills to take home and make your own wardrobe interventions. Each participant will take home their completed pocket, a Future Archive attachable pocket pattern to make further pockets, and sewing skills to continue making.
The Ethical Fashion Experience Presented by Ethical Clothing Australia
Saturday 2 March, 9:30 am
Immerse yourself in the future-focused ethics of fashion as insider intel is shared. You’ll be taken behind the scenes in an exclusive tour of businesses that are at the forefront of ethics as we follow a garments journey to showcase the processes and place you as key in leading the ethical conversation.
Triumphant x PayPal Opening Runway
Monday 4 March, 6:45 pm & 8:30 pm
Get ready for a memorable opening night to kickstart the Festival's Premium Runway series with the Triumphant x PayPal runway. Set against the backdrop of Melbourne's iconic Royal Exhibition Building, this showcase will spotlight collections from Australia's most beloved and internationally acclaimed brands. Among them are AFC Members Bianca Spender, Ngali, and Viktoria & Woods.
Emerging Mob in Fashion Runway
Thursday 7 March, 7:00 pm
Embark on a journey of visual storytelling and creative expression through bold designs, vibrant colors, and artistic practice. The Mob in Fashion Pathways Program proudly nurtures Indigenous talent within the fashion industry, forging pathways for promising careers in the world of fashion.
Melbourne Fashion Festival runs from 24 February - 5 March. To view the full program click here.