With a line up of labels including Alice McCall, Autonomy, Cylk and Gorman, the LMFF Famous for Fashion – Chapel Street Edition runway left crowds in no doubt of the reason for the precinct’s renown.
Hosted by Functions on Chapel, the runway showcased an eclectic array of new-season designs from some of Chapel Street’s well-loved retailers.
The collections were styled by Melbourne-based stylist and creative consultant Connel Chiang, who also dreamed up the kooky set-design, which incorporated cacti, rubber snakes, cow skulls, hessian and tribal masks.
The fun and funky design set the stage for the runway ahead, which was kicked off by a performance from Client Liaison, a dynamic two-man piece in the stylings of INXS-meets-Duran Duran.
Client Liaison frontman Monte made sporadic re-appearances throughout the runway dressed head to toe in outlandish garb. His first emergence saw him saunter down the runway in a tartan kilt, t-shirt featuring an Indian deity, and an embroidered velvet cape. He appeared a second time, working a cowboy hat, patchwork leggings, paisley shirt, patchwork leather coat and argyle vest to madcap effect.
Melbourne’s iconic vintage boutique retailer Shag started the official show with a vibrant fusion of clashing florals and Pucci-esque swirls. One apron-cum-tutu papered with flower applique in particular was sublime paired with geometric-print tights and a red sequin beret.
FAT showcased laidback separates in an urban-forestry colour palette of mostly greys and greens, with splashes of yellow and orange. Flower motifs and reworked army print played throughout for a modern camouflage effect.
Stevie worked strong prints in bright violet and magenta on jumpsuits and shirts, as well as in one very sharp Aztec-tweed blazer. The strong colour palette yet simple silhouettes epitomised the Stevie brand – laidback yet polished cool.
Sustainable designs from Cylk were awash with silver and dove-grey, from slinky sheathes to metallic raw-silk waistcoats and shift dresses. Simple, sophisticated and sustainable, the designs were ethereal against the Southwestern backdrop.
It was all in the subtle detailing for Jack London, the most outrageous element being a Dalmatian print shirt. Each sharp ensemble owned the Jack London slim-fit look, from tartan blazers to leather jackets in a sleek palette of maroon and black.
Pieces from Alice McCall featured a wintry palette of grey and black, with a focus on textural elements, including some lush beaded embroidery in shades of palest pink and teal, and one grey quilted poncho perfect for Winter.
ML Denim kept things simple, with denim separates featuring high waists, hoods, suspenders, and cropped embroidered denim shirts.
Gorman brought the autumnal hues to the runway, with the signature mustard-shade and items from the Ellie Malin x Gorman collaboration, featuring a fractured print much like that of geometric autumn leaves. Woolen coats, polka-dotted socks with boots, quilting and bold shapes were key. One woolen coat in charcoal with snowy sheepskin sleeves was a standout in particular.
Autonomy’s urban ensembles brought denim and khaki to new heights, with denim, leather and woolen coats featured in shades of navy, mustard and charcoal. Utilitarian backpacks were a strong feature, both practical and suave.
Shakuhachi stepped up the volume with heavily beaded shifts and cropped separates, embroidered in armour-like patterns, as well as floating blouses printed with Frida Kahlo-esque dark florals.
The Chapel Street Famous for Fashion runway was a celebration of the unique labels and retailers that make the Prahran shopping district so well-renowned, a sartorial objective achieved with sheer success.