What happened last night at FASHFEST 2018

Last night I had the absolute pleasure of attending FASHFEST’s first 2018 show at the National Gallery of Australia. This year, low-key, the event was announced barely a month ago and, yet, a testament to the Canberra community and the popularity of FASHFEST and their showcasing designers, all seated tickets were sold out for the two runs of the show, one at 7:00pm and one at 8:30pm. I made the error of judgement of purchasing a ticket to the 8:30pm show, forgetting that that’s typically my bedtime nowadays (thank you, hypothyroidism), but still made it to the doors of the National Gallery with enough excitement and anticipation for this year’s collections from Megan Cannings, Hajar Gala and Charly Thorn to get me through the evening. And, boy, was I not disappointed.

The designs were incredible.

I was a huge fan of Megan Cannings from last year (I even did an interview with her, which you can find HERE) and I was excited to see what she’d whipped up this year. The gowns were fluffy and feminine, lacy and a bit scandalous, and paired with the sharp, tight hairstyles they had a cutting modern edge to them, too. The Sydney-based designer recently showcased at New York Fashion Week (a massive congratulations!) and she brought a touch of the glamour to us in Canberra. I did have an almost accident when the heel of my shoe caught on her showstopping white cloud gown and the model almost took me down the runway with her…

Megan’s one-off gowns are available for purchase at www.megancanningsdesigns.com.au

Charly Thorn, the 19-year-old designer from Cooma who debuted at FASHFEST two years ago and has since seen her designs on the catwalk internationally, brought a vibrant, block colour and pattern spin on evening wear. Her pieces were elegant and fun, a combination of cocktail and beach wear in incredible silk fabrics. It’s incredible to see her talent appreciated and grow over the last couple years, there will always be a special space in my heart for home-grown designers.

Charly also just launched her new website and shop, with her authentic one-off pieces available for purchase: www.charlythorn.com

Hajar Gala brought the Haute Couture to the FASHFEST runway with incredibly exquisite and intricate, beaded lace and satin. These were the height of elegance – each new gown down the escalators at the National gallery brought “ooh”ing and “aah”ing from the crowd. She recently showcased at Paris Fashion Week and it’s not hard to see why – the artistry and obvious love shone through each individual, unique piece. I’ll let them speak for themselves.

Hajar creates bespoke couture pieces at www.dechallie.com.au

Did you attend FASHFEST? I would love to hear what your favourite pieces were. FASHFEST is rumoured to have another one-off show coming in December, so keep your eyes peeled!