PayPal Melbourne Fashion Festival Unveils 2024 Programme with New Runway Concepts
Today, Australia’s largest consumer fashion event, PayPal Melbourne Fashion Festival, unveils its 2024 programme featuring an elevated Premium Runway series that brings greater visibility to the cutting edge, artistic, enduring and gritty fabric of Melbourne’s fashion community as well as celebrates the wonderful success stories of the broader Australian fashion industry.
Now in its 28th year, the Festival will run from 24 February – 9 March 2024, with tickets on from 9am, Thursday 7 December. The 15-day Festival programme will feature over 100 unique events and has been crafted with the full spectrum of Victoria and Australia’s diverse fashion community firmly in focus.
The 2024 Festival will deliver exciting new runway concepts and almost double the number of featured designers year-on-year, as well as celebrate sustainability and circularity, First Nations design, self-expression at any age, and nurture fashion talent at all stages of development.
PayPal Melbourne Fashion Festival CEO, Caroline (Ralph) Ralphsmith, said: “This year we are further cementing PayPal Melbourne Fashion Festival as Australia’s only true consumer major event in Fashion – a true fashion destination – where fashion lovers, industry insiders and voyeurs all gather to celebrate and support the extraordinary rich tapestry that is the Melbourne and Victorian fashion industry.”
Visit Victoria continues as a major supporter of PayPal Melbourne Fashion Festival, celebrating Melbourne’s position as the fashion and events capital of Australia.
Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events Steve Dimopoulos said: “We’re proud to support Australia’s largest consumer fashion event and the calibre and diversity of next year’s program is set to attract new audiences from across the country, supporting local jobs and boosting our vibrant hotel and hospitality sectors.”
Minister for Creative Industries Colin Brooks said: “Whether you’re an emerging designer or one of Australia’s most celebrated designers, next year’s Melbourne Fashion Festival will support our creative industry and see our city come alive with creativity and excitement.”
EVENTS ON SALE NOW:
The Festival’s preeminent Premium Runway events will feature over 85 designers, 65% of which are from Victorian, across 12 shows. Presented at the official home of the Festival, the iconic Royal Exhibition Building in partnership with Museums Victoria, from 4 – 9 March, two different but complementary runways will take place each night, connected by a theme that mirrors the hot topics of the fashion industry at the moment.
Monday, 4 March – Triumphant x PayPal Runway
Naming rights partner, PayPal, a global leader in payments and buy now, pay later, returns for its third year and will kick-off the Premium Runways, presenting the Triumphant x PayPal Runway. This opening night will be an extravagant and joyful showcase of contemporary style, refinement and fabulousness from Australia’s design trailblazers, international success stories and most-loved brands. The two runways at 6.45pm and 8.30pm will be the only repeat shows of the Festival, featuring Aje, Anna Quan, Oroton, Martin Grant, Ngali, Viktoria+Woods, and Bianca Spender.
General Manager, PayPal Australia, Andrew Toon said: “We are excited to continue our naming rights partnership of the PayPal Melbourne Fashion Festival and we’re looking forward to opening the Festival for the first time this year with the Triumphant x PayPal Runway. Fashion is a leading interest among our over nine million Australian customers, and we’re proud to currently support 150,000 Australian fashion retailers and designers to sell securely online both domestically and to international audiences.”
Tuesday, 5 March – Fashion Futures
For the first time in Festival history, the programme will feature a dedicated sustainability runway. Thread Lightly Runway x Deloitte at 7.00pm showcases designers doing exceptional things to minimise their impact on the environment, including Arnsdorf, Bassike, Caves Collect, Joslin, Madre Natura, Nevekna, Nobody Denim and Yanggurdi. Followed by a crowd-favourite at 8.30pm, the National Graduate Showcase x Emporium Melbourne, presenting the top 10 graduate designers, hand-picked from Australia’s leading fashion design institutions and representing the next generation of fashion superstars, who challenge fashion boundaries and inspire awe.
Wednesday, 6 March – Dress Up
Suit Up Runway at 7.00pm is an exploration and playful reinvention of the suit and its conventions, including Chris Ran Lin, Dom Bagnato, Godwin Charli, MJ Bale, Par Moi, Reigner, Silk Laundry and Tomba. At 8.30pm, the Glam Up Runway will showcase event dressing at its finest with a focus on monumental silhouettes, heightened sophistication and outstanding intricacy, featuring Alin Le Kal, Asiyam, Cappallazzo Couture, Jason Grech, Mariam Seddiq, Paolo Sebastian and Paul McCann.
Thursday, 7 March – Tribe x Fujitsu
First Nations Rising Designer Runway x Fujitsu at 7.00pm celebrates exciting emerging First Nations fashion talent, the ones to watch and the ones to champion, as selected by Festival collaborator, Mob in Fashion, including Delvene Cockatoo-Collins, Gali, House of Darwin, Lillardia Briggs-Houston, Miimi and Jiinda, Soild Ochre, Take Pride Movement and more. At 8.30pm, Urban Oasis Runway x Fujitsu presents renegade and First Nations streetwear designers that take cues from global conversations and translate them into distinctive fashion for the elevated every day, including Amber Days, Best Jumpers, Ginny’s Girl Gang, Iljta Ntjarra, JAM the label, Joesph & James and Wah Wah.
Also taking place on 7 March, is the Festival’s must-attend industry networking event, the Australian Fashion Business Lunch. Celebrating ‘Fashion Visionaries’, a panel of dynamic fashion leaders will discuss inspiring stories of breakthroughs, boldness and embracing the forces of change to drive great success. Keynote speakers for this event will be announced at a later date.
Friday, 8 March – Power
On International Woman’s Day, F*** the Invisible Runway at 7.00pm faces directly into the fear and perception that women become invisible as they age and rejects this notion completely. Fashion is one of the purest forms of self-expression at any age and this runway showcases fabulous fashion that elevates women in their 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s and beyond, including by Banded Together, Gail Sorronda, Julie Goodwin, Kara Baker, Perple, Verner and Viceta Wang. Revelry Runway follows at 8.30pm with a line-up of contemporary designs for celebratory moments that can transform us, at least for the evening, and invite a freedom unknown in other hours, featuring Atoir, Hansen + Gretel, Husk, Maara Collective, Manning Cartell, Pfeiffer, Sass and Bide and Van der Kooij.
Saturday, 9 March – Finale
The Festival will conclude with two milestone moments. The return of the Grand Solo Showcase at 7.00pm with National Designer Award alumni, P.E. Nation, selected for this year’s solo runway as an acknowledgment of the brand’s brilliant success and the transformative role activewear has played in how we now dress. At 8.30pm, Block Party Runway x Visit Melbourne will mark the Premium Runway finale with established and up and coming designers doing bold, edgy and interesting things. Featuring Youkhana, Lucinda Babi, r. sport, Injury, Gary Bigeni, Nixi Killick, HoMie and Gotham, this runway will revel in the spirit of Saturday night dressing and the party will be in full swing after the final walk!
EVENTS COMING SOON:
There are many more events in PayPal Melbourne Fashion Festival’s 2024 programme still to come, with new tickets to be released in different stages between now and February 2024.
The Industry Development Programme will return to elevate the next generation of Australian fashion talent, with the coveted National Designer Award presented by David Jones, National Graduate Showcase x Emporium Melbourne, screening of the Fashion Film Awards and Fashion Writing Mentorship.
As part of an ongoing, Festival-wide partnership, Museums Victoria will present Fashion Talks. Two robust and multifaceted panel discussions with industry leaders on some of the most pressing ethical and cultural topics in fashion today – Conversions Across Culture, and Design, Innovation & Sustainability.
The much-loved Independent Programme will be brought forward to the first week of the festival (from 24 February) providing clear air to ensure consumers have more opportunities to engage with the depth and diversity of Victoria’s local independent and emerging fashion practitioners beyond the runway. This programme is a brilliant and varied selection of over 90 fashion grass roots events, brought to life by design innovators, creatives, institutions and community organisations, with tickets being released in January 2024.
Highlights of the Independent Programme that will return after debuting at the Festival in 2023 include F.A.T (Fabulous and Trendy), which showcases Australian size-inclusive brands on size 16+ models; aiming to break barriers within the fashion industry and change the way people see fat bodies. As well as Let Them Eat Cake presented by Vintage Garage, best known as specialist vintage dealers and makers, who will host a roving fantasy runway with classic vintage, edgy streetwear, festival gear and disco-inspired clothing.
Another highlight of the 2024 programme is the return of the Fashion Forecourt supported by City of Melbourne, a fashion-centric social and hospitality destination located directly outside the Royal Exhibition Building on Museum Plaza. This free, non-ticketed area offers Melbourne’s most stylish drinks, gourmet fare, live DJs, entertainment and playful activations, and is the perfect destination for people-watching and pre and post-show delights!
As part of the Fashion Forecourt experience, the Festival will be debuting Forecourt Reserved – bookable alfresco tables, making it easy to meet friends, enjoy a tipple and share a grazing platter. As well as a new Afterparty event – taking guests straight from runway to bar with exclusive access to the Fashion Forecourt’s VIP Bar after the last Premium Runway each night. Both these new hospitality products will be available to add on to any Premium Runway ticket purchase.
PayPal Melbourne Fashion Festival’s 2024 programme features over 100 unique events. Tickets to the Premium Runways are priced from $69. To view the programme and purchase tickets visit paypal.mff.com.au.