Review: National Graduate Showcase at VAMFF

12 March 2018

I saw clothes, I saw lights, and I saw the people.

The National Graduate Showcase was inside the Royal Melbourne Exhibition Building. Before the show started, I asked a couple sitting next to me what their expectation for tonight’s show was. They said they looked forward to seeing how the graduates created the next fashion trend because one day they might be the next ‘Coco Chanel’ or ‘Giorgio Armani’. The show started with the designers’ monologue video, interpreting the fashion concepts of their clothes. Later, the models started walking on the runway. Sitting in the front, I saw all the details of the clothes and the models’ catwalk. It was an amazing experience for me to get so close to the models and get into the fashion world.

The fashion show had three best parts: the lights, clothes, and models. The lights in the Royal Exhibition Building brought us into a mysterious world with mist and surprise. Blue, red and orange lights decorated the ceiling and created a harmonious vibe between the old architecture and the modern fashion. The models walked to the music rhythm towards us step by step. Their bodies’ curves vividly presented the clothes. No emotion on their faces, just walking. I stared at the models when they turned around and walked back. They were like cruel knights winning battles and leaving with their reputations. This cycle felt like a religious ceremony under the dim lights. However, at the end of the show, when the designers came out with the models hand in hand, they smiled and clapped, which was the best part of the show.

After the show, I met one of the designers, Lucie Martyr. She was interested in using petals to decorate her clothes. She also mentioned that because of the phenomenal symbol of beauty, flowers should not only represent the beauty of women. Men can also wear those flower patterned clothes because beauty is across genders.

Charm, confidence, and elegance.

It was one day after International Women’s Day. From these beautiful women, I now have a deeper understanding of the fashion industry. For women, sometimes fashion seems as a strong weapon to win power. However, fashion is not a tool for pleasing men or winning a position in society just for self-preservation. Instead, fashion helps both women and men to present themselves better and shows their enchanted personalities. It brings the new potentiality and fresh energy back into people’s life.

Just like the other graduate designer Xiangqiao Sheng said, “Fashion is the art of living beyond living.”


The Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival is on throughout March.

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