The Essence of Meraki

At a time when the Canberra fashion industry is almost nonexistent, two girls have come along and helped change the game. On the 24th of March a locally inspired fashion show took place at the Fitters Workshop in Kingston. Meraki, meaning to do something with soul, creativity or love, certainly lived up to its name.

Fashionistas Bianca Pavilic and Maryanne Irhia created an amazing show that was fresh, new and original and I was lucky enough to be apart of the experience.

When I woke up on the 24th of March I expected to participate and watch this event as a volunteer. Instead I modelled.

At 4:30am that morning I was asked if I could step in and model in the show. As a lover of fashion this was a once in a lifetime opportunity and I was quick to accept.

Behind the Scenes

At 8am the Fitters Workshop was a blank canvas.

The rustic room quickly changed as the tables and chairs were brought in and set up. Silver table cloths covered the tables as Wiluna Flower Studio, Local Press Wholefoods, Designer Nails by Annaoshea and the pop up clothing stores set up. The show was beginning to come to life.

Outside, makeup artists gathered in a tent to hide from the morning rain and set up, ready for 23 models. Makeup littered the tables, brushes, sponges and products strewn everywhere. The light was dull and dim inside the tent, and as the makeup artists got the models ready for the show, they moved us about trying to find the perfect light.

Pony and Pins worked at trying to tame everyones hair into glorious messy waves with clips, combs, product and curlers. Hairspray coated the air, mixing with the smell of coffee. The models wondered around the space with hair rollers in laughing and talking as they prepared for the show ahead.

The most uncomfortable experience was getting changed outside on the rocky ground. There was no set area for changing for the show so we used the makeup tent and the outside area which meant flashing each-other, walking bare foot on rocks and the odd conversation in your underwear.

When the show began the models stood outside the Fitters Workshop, taking photos, fixing their hair and makeup. Some ate while others attempted to pratice walking in their chunky heels.

When I walked into the show and onto the runway all I saw was rows of people. The room has been transformed. What was once a drab grey room was now a girly bohemian haven with sheer fabrics, flowers and rustic looks. The audience brought the room to life and were decorations themselves, some dress in glittering dresses, others in bright colours or sharp suits.

The Designers

The designers I walked for where Ryan Fisher and Bianca Pavilic. Ryan Fisher otherwise known as Gerhardus Harmannus on Instagram, focused on comfortable, unique fabrics. His clothing was simple, for men and women, with straight lines and A line cuts. The clothing was youthful casualness with sharp lines and smart style. The black, blue and purple hues are perfect for winter.

Bianca Pavilic The Label has a unique style. It’s whimsical, romantic, comfortable with a vintage touch. Each model looked beautiful in her clothes and the silhouettes, which ranged from straight leg pants, midi and mini skirts and glittery crop tops. Her clothes were everyday wear meets feminine style, with soft pinks, whites, purples, blues and yellows, reminding you of a hot summers day.

Adanna Obinna strutting her stuff

The other two designers were Venus Blooms and Claudia the Label. Venus Blooms featured street wear and festival clothing with hints of sex ,drugs and rock and roll, the triumph of bad taste. The girls walked out wearing towering boots, pink cowboy hats and dresses that were reminiscent of the 60s and 70s. Venus Blooms was bold in her clothing and wasn’t afraid to clash prints and styles to challenge the seasonal look.

Claudia the Label featured lace and mesh lingerie in blacks and whites, the female body liberated. Sensual, soft and sexy, all the girls look like angels when they walked into the runway.

Tahlia Langdown looking stunning

Maryanne and Bianca did an amazing job on Meraki. The show reflected their passion and vision for fashion.

Love, Erin xx

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