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FASHFEST Night Four: the final fling

Fiona Keary

The last night of any fashion show is always big, grand and over the top, regardless of whether it’s local or international. FASHFEST Night 4 was definitely no different, pulling out all the stops in a bid to outdo its inaugural showcase just last year.

Image consultant and fashionista, Fiona Keary was front row and centre to capture it all. It was cold, it was chilly but Canberra’s fashionistas were out in force to celebrate the final evening of FASHFEST 2014. And if you missed the earlier action, relive night’s one, two and three here.

It was a night to celebrate the thriving Canberra creative scene and recognise established and emerging talent.   The atmosphere was buzzing with anticipation, as the fashionable set were eager not only to get a pic on the red carpet but also get to their seats and enjoy the show.   The theme was Visionary and showcased a cast of innovative Canberra designers with a view to the future. From simple, sustainable pared back collections to high glam, edgy and urban designs the future looks like a fab place to be.

FASHFEST and JETS Digital Swimsuit Collaboration

The FASHFEST collaboration with  JETS Digital and British fashion designer Shelley Campton showcased the last of the swimwear collection. Inspired by the urban landscapes and domestic spaces that surround her, independent artist Yasmin Masri’s designs use pattern to represent place with abstract forms and high contrast between colours—a fitting tribute to The Visionary theme. 

A wonderful collaboration of totally ready to wear swimwear. I loved Yasmin Masri’s bold and graphic prints paired with both classic and exciting shapes.

Percival Luto

Considering each piece of jewellery they produce as a sculpture, Percival Luto sets form and structure on fire by bringing the two together. Those science inclined may have made the connection with Percival Luto representing the outlier, the oddity, the uncharted and the remote. The business exists freely within its own orbit.



SZN creates innovative comfortable garments using unconventional materials and remnants from pre-consumer waste. Fashion designer Suzan Dloughy is committed to giving waste a new cultural capital through her clothing label. The neutral palette and simple silhouettes mask the clever and thoughtful construction of designer Susan Dloughy’s collection. I loved the concept of repurposing, upcycling and recycling to create pared back silhouettes.


Karen Lee

Karen Lee is a Canberra based label dedicated to the consumer who wants to be comfortable and confident in expressing their individual style. By not following current trends, designer Karen Lee ensures her designs transcend age and have longevity.

With a neutral colour palette, texture was the hero of this collection. I loved the unexpected combination of wool with sheers fabrics and the mix of sculptural tailoring and gorgeous draping. The full necklines combined with clever cut out details were beautifully executed.With a neutral colour palette, texture was the hero of this collection. I loved the unexpected combination of wool with sheers fabrics and the mix of sculptural tailoring and gorgeous draping. The full necklines combined with clever cut out details were beautifully executed.


All eyes on Us

Boasting contrasting colour combinations and exaggerated patterns, All eyes on Us creates glamorous garments for every woman. With a strongly inspired middle eastern influence, Ashani Madola’s collections are carefully made with only the most comfortable fabrics and exquisite draping.  Sparkles, sequins and shine. It was all glamour, glamour and more glamour from designer Ashani Madola. Stunning silhouettes, luxurious fabrics with pops of vibrant colour the collection ranged from cheeky bustiers to sleek full-length dresses. The pick of the night was Ashani’s second piece, the long grey dress with an orange floral flock.


4 Minutes 33

4 Minutes 33 wants you, the consumer to wear their label and communicate poetic expression. By enabling the wearer to add their touch of personal style, the garments transcend age, body shape and culture.

Designers Gemma Jameson and Francesca Altenburg were inspired by the life of Mexican painter Frida Kahlo creating the Viva La Vida collection. The Mexican influences are evident in the silhouettes and colours used with beautiful detailing such as embroidered features and hand painted prints. My favourite piece was the striking white dress with the splashes of red.


Hijab House

Bringing a fresh breath of air for Muslim women in Australia, Hijab House creates stylishly modest clothing for young Muslim women. Hijab House allows Muslim Women the opportunity to follow their religious duty whilst still remaining fashionable.  Elegant, effortless and chic. The success of this collection is the combination of simple shapes, luxurious fabrics, injected with vibrant colour and pattern. I love the versatility of the pieces, the ability to mix and match as well as layer.


Corr Blimey

Bringing a sculptural approach to street wear, Corr Blimey steps away from mass production. Every Corr Blimey garment is cut, sewn, pressed and delivered by the designer. Talk about customer service!

Edgy, urban street wear. This collection was a showstopper with strong metal embellishments care of Silver Atom. I loved the bold, geometric shapes and unexpected placement of the metalwork. Earthy tones were mixed with exquisite tailoring and each piece was beautifully crafted. The detailing, for example, on the men’s pants was intricate and added unexpected interest. Take away the highly stylised futuristic hair and make up (it was amazing) and each piece is ready to wear. It was the perfect rounding out of the ‘Visionary’ theme.

As the final night drew to a close we were treated to a finale runway showcasing a statement look from each FASHFEST designer. What a visual feast! It was a fantastic moment to embrace and recognise the depth of creative talent that Canberra has to offer. It had me on the edge of my seat, waiting for next year!   Want more FASHFEST? There’s the opportunity to embrace all things FASHFEST plus buy or order a piece from you favourite designer on Day 5: The Trade Show at East Hotel hosted by Hustle and Scout from 11 – 4pm on Sunday.

Fiona Keary

Image Consultant Fiona Keary loves fashion. In fact she lives it. But most of all she loves helping others to find their way through the maze of do’s and don’ts to achieve a look that suits their personality and lifestyle. After training with Toshiko Kobatake and working as an Image Consultant in London for a number of years, Fiona has returned to Canberra to help her clients look and feel great whilst still remaining true to themselves. More about the Author