On the first day of December it’s unlikely that you’re focussed on much beyond Christmas and, perhaps, New Year’s Eve. Not so in the fashion world, however. With shelves stocked and fingers crossed in the hope of a good Christmas for retailers, the industry en masse openly admits that it has turned its focus away from the remainder of the year and is instead focussed firmly on the first season of 2012. For designers and stores that means that spring 2012 look books are being released with frequency, and for fashion week organisers it means the long process of publicity can get firmly underway. Hence last night, on the first day of a summer that felt anything but, next year’s VAMFF (the Melbourne Fashion Festival) had its first of many kick-offs and some of the low-down on what is, at least in our eyes, Australia’s best fashion week was given.
I say ‘some of the low-down’ with good cause. Next year’s festival dates might be firmly locked in, but organisers are keeping mum on precisely who is involved and what you can expect to see on the catwalk. What we can tell you of particular note, however, is this:
- Dita Von Teese will be in Melbourne to promote her Von Follies lingerie line for retailer Target
- There’ll be an increased focus on the business seminar and data-mining-as-fashion-forecasting company Editd will amongst the speakers / pitchers
- L’Oreal remain a major partner, and Australian retailer David Jones has signed a long term contract with the festival and will host its own catwalk
- Claudia Schiffer will be there
And the evolution.
The last point, that Claudia Schiffer will be at LMFF, is a half truth. Had you tuned into Twitter post-launch you’d have seen commentary on the ‘fact’ that the former supermodel would be in attendance. In reality, it’s just a hope of sponsors L’Oreal to have Schiffer in attendance. And with good cause. But it is, perhaps, an over promise with the potential for under delivery that would have been better left unsaid. After all, for as good as the festival is, there is an undercurrent of thought that says it under delivered in 2011.
To be honest I find it hard to pinpoint anything that was realistically wrong with 2011′s festival. Ask enough people, however, and while you’ll find that the general consensus is that it was a good event, you’ll also hear opinions of how it was too similar to previous years. For an event as well put together as the Melbourne Fashion Festival that wouldn’t normally be a problem, but with much improvement and newness originally offered at 2011′s own launch night, the disparity between promises and actual delivery seemingly came off as a disappointment to some. Not a disappointment of epic proportions akin to receiving a horse as a present only to discover it’s in effect a piñata filled with murderous Greeks, but a disappointment none let the less. Hence the fact that the desire to have Claudia Schiffer in attendance is a known and publicised fact poses an equally potential problem to the festival.
LMFF ’12 kicks off on 8 March and ends on 15 March.