Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week is over for another year and we're looking back at our image coverage, from the runway to backstage and more. AAP's picture researcher Kristen Daly picks ten highlights by photographers Dan Himbrechts, Joel Carrett and Bianca De Marchi.
Between the artful spectacles of industry stalwarts like Romance Was Born to the zeitgeisty offerings of newer labels like MacGraw, I was tough to pick just ten images for my best-of list for MBFWA last year. This time wasn't any easier, with even more coverage of the runway presentations as well as celebrity appearances, backstage, street style and portraits.
While clients loved our fast and sharp runway coverage for their trend wrap-ups, Dan, Joel and Bianca also came away with some stunning frames that capture some of the emotion and creative energy that draws people back to MBFWA each year. Here are some of my favourites.
After the Mars-like landscape and slick, glittery garments delivered by Camilla and Marc last year, Aje's take on an opening show felt decidedly more down to earth, with gum-leaf greens and foamy whites presented alongside yellow wattle prints and impressionistic brushstrokes. It marked an exciting milestone for designers Edwina Robinson and Adrian Norris, who premiered the label at Sydney fashion week back in 2012. I loved the lighting at this spot at the Rocks: a mix of dazzling spotlights, pictured here, and a sun rapidly lowering behind the nearby Harbour Bridge.
It's become a tradition for international designers to show up on the fashion week schedule, with this year's invite going to LA-based designer Jonathan Simkhai. He didn't disappoint, with a lush symphony of textures, volume and Sydney-inspired shades played out against a moody Bondi sunset. I especially liked the orange palette, ranging from a pale sherbet to the flaming hue featured here; just add a nude lip, some gold hoops and some bravado and you're good to go.
And now, to Carriageworks. Backstage at fashion week can be busy and loud, but there are quiet, intimate moments too, when hair and makeup teams are working intently and almost-ready models catch their breath before stepping into the spotlight. This beautiful image by Bianca De Marchi captures one such moment before the Tigerlily runway on Monday.
Australian fashion has moulded its own brand of minimalism, at times slinky and sexy, at times feminine and romantic with crafty touches. And then a brand like PE Nation comes along with its bold primary colours, sportswear sheen and endless crop tops. The logo-mania pushed by international brands like Off White and Alexander Wang was there, as was denim on denim and mismatched shoes. But the splashiest moment had to be a final curtain of water to mark designers Pip Edwards and Claire Tregoning's upcoming Speedo collaboration.
One of the draws of a fashion week in Sydney is the long list of potential offsite locations, including many hidden gems within a stone's throw of the CBD. This year, local label Double Rainbouu filled the Chinese gardens in Darling Harbour with clusters of fresh-faced, shaggy-haired models artfully draped in tie-dye and linens. I love how this gorgeous shot by Dan Himbrechts captures both the tranquility of the gardens and the model's on-trend cornflower yellow drop earrings.
Pink was a clear colour trend this year, with shades of lemonade, sherbet and plum favoured by everyone from Alice McCall to Hansen & Gretel and Jonathan Simkhai. I especially loved the slightly acerbic shade of cotton candy jumping out against the austere concrete runway at Karla Spetic. I picked this image, again by Dan, for its graceful, languid lines and sense of motion.
Justin Cassin's planned extravaganza at Luna Park had piqued the curiosity of many fashion week attendees, but the hype faded somewhat after guests waited close to two hours to see models on the runway. There were also reports of several off-tone musical performances and a VIP section placed leagues away from the runway. Oh dear... at least Michael Klim had a chance to show off his best impression of a health goth?
In another strong argument for staging (well-managed!) shows offsite, the label Ten Pieces delivered their presentation against the glorious backdrop of Bondi Beach and surrounds on a crisp autumn day. It's difficult to pick just one highlight from Joel Carrett's coverage, but this frame has a uniquely surreal quality; the ordered lineup of the models, photographed here in lock step, juxtaposes nicely with the turbulence of the ocean behind them.
Somali-American model Halima Aden recently made history as the first model to grace the pages of Sports Illustrated's swimsuit edition wearing a hijab and burkini. In town for fashion week, where pushes for diversity on and off the runway are slowly bearing fruit, Halima showed she's a natural in front of the camera in this series of portraits by Dan Himbrechts.
Australian fashion legend Carla Zampatti made a mark with her closing show, from the luxurious evening wear to the orchestra on stage and guests ranging from NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian to ABC Chair Ita Buttrose and outgoing MP Julie Bishop. Front of house it was a feast for the senses, but my favourite moment may be this backstage snapshot by Joel. Fashion week is very serious sometimes but a big, teeth-flashing smile will never go out of style.
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