The Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival (VAMFF) may have advertised its official dates as 17th – 23rd March, but one week later on Sunday March 30th, it was evident that celebrations of a sartorial kind were still in full swing! The Curvy Couture Roadshow was not only a series of outstanding runway shows, but the plus-size fashion runway event was the first of its kind as part of the Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival’s Cultural Program.
With a focus on showcasing a high quality selection of independent Australian plus size designers, the Curvy Couture Roadshow not only used accomplished and well known models including Laura Wells, Natalie Wakeling and special guest Hayley Hasselhoff, but also a selection of upcoming plus-size models that were quite new in the modelling industry or had never walked a runway before! What blew me away with this event was the strong and enthusiastic sense of encouragement and support from the audience for each and every design and model. I was so thrilled to have been a part of this exciting event, and honestly, even though I am not classified as plus-size myself, the fun, lively and supportive energy from all those in attendance, as well as the many well designed, genuinely flattering and unique pieces that were on display made this event my highlight of the VAMFF.
I honestly think that everyone in the fashion industry can take something away from this event. The Curvy Couture Roadshow truly captured the spirit that essentially, fashion should be more about, something that goes beyond whether you are plus size or not. Above all, fashion should be a fun way to celebrate bodies and the different shapes and curves it comes with, by adorning them with well made, stylish and flattering pieces that makes the wearer feel confident and beautiful.
Here is my run down of my favourite pieces from the Curvy Couture Roadshow, including some very spectacular names and brands in the plus size fashion industry to look out for!
- Almost French Underwire Maillot One piece
The entire range of stunning swimwear by international model and body confidence advocate Robyn Lawley in collaboration with Bond Eye Swimwear were created with quality fabrics, great structure and cleverly designed shapes and cut outs. However, the favourite was always going to be this exquisite one piece. As worn by Miss Carter herself, in the famous shot of Beyonce in Brunswick (Melbourne represent!) as well as in her film clip for ‘No Angel’.
- Flocked Detail Merino Jumper (100% Merino Wool)
When it comes to getting dressed in Winter, there is always at least one time when you are left weighing up between warmth and style. That is why I loved this jumper from the moment I saw it! It allows you to get the best of both worlds, perfect to keep you warm whilst looking very chic indeed.
- Take Me Away Sequin Trimmed Jacket
Because whoever said all denim jackets look the same and were created equal was wrong! This is the most stunning, flattering denim jacket I have ever come across. This cleverly designed jacket is made in a stretch denim that hugs the body and creates the ultimate flattering fit with gathered sleeves and a slight cinch towards the waist line to provide a more hour glass shape. The added touch of the studded detailing provides a distinctive edge to a classic.
- Gigi Silk Cape
Meri By Design was all about sophisticated yet easy to wear and simplistic designs that make maximum impact. I loved how each piece made a statement on its own yet could easily be dressed up or down to suit many different occasions. Keep an eye out for their luxurious rabbit jackets and capes that made an appearance on the runway, (shown below) and will be available online and in stores soon.
Putting together a striking outfit becomes as simple as slipping on this silk cape, making clothing coordination so damn simple. Every woman should have one of these versatile silk cover ups readily available to add wow factor to any outfit. Throw on top of jeans and a cami or a LBD as your running out the door to take your outfit from So-so to HELLO! It comes in a variety of colours and patterns that make it super simple to match with many of your existing wardrobe pieces.
- Clairvaux Blazer
This blazer was exceptionally well made, from the flattering cut to the beautiful lining inside and the added quirkiness of the unexpected colours that worked to deliver one show-stopping blazer. I’ll admit, you can’t do this blazer justice until you try it on to really see its magic. Add a completely revamped, amazing new touch to your existing outfit, whether it be with a dress, pants, jeans or a skirt, this design really offers a remarkable new spin on a classic wardrobe staple.
Another thing that stood out, apart from the clothing was the makeup on all the models. Peta Gai, founder of Iridis Cosmetics was the make-up artist behind the gorgeous looks. In particular, I loved the intense smokey eye she created for Hayley Hasselhoff as well as the choice of lipstick worn by Laura Wells, the colour is called ‘Plateaux’, a rich, high gloss berry toned, burgundy hue.
That was my top five picks from the runway fashion, but there were so many more great designs on display. For more information on other designers that were at the Curvy Couture Roadshow, check out their websites below, or keep up to date with the Curvy Couture Roadshow and their plans for next year at curvycoutureroadshow.com
To witness some fantastic snippets from the day, have a look at this brilliant video put together by Danielle “Danimezza” Melnyczenko of danimezza.com