Eco Fashion Week Australia (EFWA) was dreamed up just outside Perth, Western Australian by eco-fashion visionary Zuhal Kuvan-Mills, and the inaugural event occurred during the last week of November 2017. Two years in the making, EFWA took place across a number of different venues in the very sustainability-conscious city of Fremantle, just south of Perth. We have mentioned some of our highlights from the week below, but also check out our article about our favourite eco designers from the event here soon.
Wednesday, Nov 22: Media Launch + Welcome to Australia
EFWA kicked off the six days of events on Wednesday with a Media Launch runway show and Welcome to Australia party. We were first privileged to witness a traditional Welcome to Country where we paid our respects to the traditional land owners of Australia. Following this, the runway show began where a select few designers showcased one of their pieces. This was a fantastic taste of what was to come, and it was shaping up to be an amazing five days of runway shows!
Following the show was the Welcome to Australia party where we had a chance to meet some of the other media partners such as Peppermint Mag, YouTuber Kristen Leo, Nat from tommie magazine, and Jen from Eco Warrior Princess as well as the many of the designers such as Merdi Sihombing and Hiroaki Tanaka – Studio Membrane (see photos above). The entire evening took place at Taylor’s Art and Coffee House in Middle Swan, and it was a beautiful venue with delicious catering to match!
Thursday Nov 23: – Opening Gala
Night two was the Opening Gala for EFWA. It was an evening filled with previews of all of the designers who would be showing their collections over the coming evenings. We were also treated to live music from local musicians as well as some (amazing!) collections from students from Universities across Australia including Curtin University Perth, RMIT University Melbourne, Edith Cowan University Perth, and the Melbourne Fashion Institute. There were certainly some designers to watch including Kate Hannah (see photos above) and Julia English.
Friday, Nov 24: Official Shows Day 1
Night one of the fashion shows and EFWA is off to a great start! The brains behind EFWA, Zuhal, started off the night with her latest Green Embassy collection, and the evening continued on a journey all over the world with designers from far and wide including swimwear brand MYMARINI from Germany, Sylvia Calvo from Spain, Connally McDougall from Canada, and Shravan Kummar from India.
Saturday, Nov 25: Eco Seminar + Official Shows Day 2
Saturday began with an Eco Seminar “Disposable Planet”, where we were able to be a part of presentations give by Sea Shepherd Australia, the Australian Made Campaign, Fashion Revolution Australia and New Zealand, and Jane Milburn, sustainability consultant and author of Slow Clothing.
Saturday evening’s shows were no exception to the stunning display of eco fashion we had already experienced. The evening began with a stunning collection of Merdi Sihombing of Indonesia (left image) where we then travelled back to Australia to witness the natural beauty of Fabric of Nature (right image), Arcaro Couture, and Alteva. We were then treated to an awesome display of the ridiculous amount of plastic waste in our world by Senorita Awesumo. The incredible Studio Membrane of Japan then closed a very inspiring evening of eco-fashion with his stunning collection.
Sunday, Nov 26: Official Shows Day 3
After the previous evenings incredible displays, we weren’t sure what we would see next! Sunday evening kicked off with Sista of JAC, with bold colours and daring cuts. We had more bright and bold pieces from Elle Evens Swimwear which many were in awe of. We also were able to experience Stain of Australia, Things of Substance of Vietnam, and Kirsten Ley of Canada’s latest collections. The evening’s final show was Marilyn Wilson’s EFWA Upcycling Challenge (see the images above) which was a huge crowd pleaser with all of the ingenious uses of only collared shirts to create entire outfits. I think we all found a favourite amongst these emerging designers!
Monday, Nov 27: Official Shows Day 4
The final night of EFWA didn’t disappoint with another incredible display of how diverse and “high-fashion” eco-friendly fashion can really be! Australia was represented by some fabulous designers such as Verdant the Label, Simone Arnold, Vitamin by Sonalika, and Merino Country. One of the standouts of the evening was Melbourne based Lima Jordan (right image) with her avant-garde, tribal-inspired collection. We also had another taste of Canadian eco-fashion through Salvij by Gigi’s (left image) latest collection.
Also to note where the “How-to?” workshops that took place throughout the day on Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday. These covered an array of topics such as: how to reuse “disposable” plastic shopping bags, up-cycling tried clothes, clothing repair workshops, and even a Batik workshop. These were a great resource for those who are wanting to make their existing wardrobe last longer, or produce less waste by repurposing it for fashion!
Overall, we would count the inaugural EFWA a great success! It was a fantastic way to see what the rest of the world is doing to reduce their impact on the world and see really how far you can push eco-friendly fashion. We loved how well we could see any of these designers up on the runway with any of the other “conventional” fashion houses. We can´t wait to see how much traction eco-friendly, sustainable fashion in the coming months following Eco Fashion Week Australia. If these designers can create such amazing, and diverse collections while not leaving a gigantic mark on the earth, why can’t everyone?
In partnership with Eco Fashion Week Australia.