I was recently invited to attend a showcase by Victorian fashion students at the event ‘Four Seasons in one Night’ held in Melbourne.
While I have had many dealings with student fashion in the past, and always been greatly impressed with the standard of work presented, this time, I got more than I expected.
The show captured Victoria’s love for fashion and international design, as well as celebrating the contribution of international and domestic students to the fashion industry.
Part of the Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival’s Cultural Program Project Series, the event celebrated the next generation of Victoria’s designers and Victorian education providers who support their journey.
The Four Seasons in One Night catwalk parade focused on the four seasons that make Melbourne unique and featured exclusive pieces from four student designers who have studied in Victoria.
Yan Ho, who recently completed a Bachelor of Fashion (Apparel Engineering and design) of Holmesglen Institute, was selected to present the summer series. Her collection drew inspiration by the five elements – fire, water, earth, wood and metal and featured machine sewn quilted patterns to create a contemporary and comfortable silhouette.
The autumn collection was presented by Yanxi Chen who completed an Advanced Diploma in Fashion Design with Box Hill Institute. Recently selected as one of MSFW’s emerging designers, Yanxi attributes her success and design philosophy to the friends she has made along the way.
Recent graduate from RMIT University holding a Bachelor of design of Fashion (Honours) was Connie Diamantopoulos who presented the winter collection. Inspired by art and science, Connie’s collection used a variety of unconventional materials, including ball bearings and safety seatbelts, in the exploration of safety and protection within society.
Kunuch Somritutai, or ‘Jay’ to his friends, proudly presented the spring collection. Since completing a design foundation course with Swinburne University, Jay began studying at Box Hill Institute. Being a fashion designer has been Jay’s dream since he was young and he credits his experience studying in Melbourne as helping him reach his dreams.
I expected a great show and I was not disappointed. The ability and skill of Victorian students and young graduates always has my mind buzzing. How on earth do they draw their inspiration? It never ceases to amaze me that such young minds can have so much insight and foresight and then be able to draw from that to create beautiful and innovative fashion. Their use of fabrics and other textiles astounded me and I felt that what I saw on the catwalk at the Four Seasons in One Night event was equal to, and in some cases better than, what I have seen on other catwalks in Australia and overseas.
But, I said that I witnessed ‘more’, and I did!
More amazing talent from Victorian students studying in areas other than fashion design.
Students from William Angliss Institute, SAE Institute Australia and Melbourne College of Hair and Beauty also played a role in the preparation and running of the show.
These students are often forgotten as their work seems to go along quite happily in the background, but I can tell you, the work of these students was exceptional.
The food served to us was delicious. It was well thought out, served with efficiency and professionalism and I am pretty sure the circumstances of preparation and serving in the limited space available was quite difficult to say the least.
When you see a model on the catwalk you will usually take quick note of the hair and makeup, but overall it is the garment that model is wearing that is the feature, and so it should be. But if the model doesn’t have a complimentary hair style, colour, form or the right makeup then in most cases the garment may as well be just hanging limply on a coat hanger.
I was so incredibly impressed with the work the student hair and makeup artists had done I felt like ‘mother hen’ wanting to puff my chest out proudly, knowing that these students were learning their craft in my home state.
In fact, I was so incredibly proud of the work of by all students involved in the Four Seasons in One Night event, that I am really excited for their individual futures.
HUGE congratulations to all of you wonderfully creative and talented students and also to the Victorian education system which is helping these students evolve in their individuality.