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A Stylists Diary VAMFF 2020: Strand Society March Edition

12 Mar 2020

Article curated by Arianne Witt of Lola Jagger.


Cover image features GINGER & SMART dress 


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Last week I jetted off to Melbourne to attend the Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival on behalf of The Strand Arcade, to celebrate a selection of their very own retailers in the Runway 3 Show presented by Harper's BAZAAR.

After hopping off the plane, I checked into the wonderful Adelphi Hotel, took a walk down the street to the Lune Croissanterie to try a famous croissant (or two!), had a few outfit changes and then made my way to the Royal Exhibition Building for the night. The fabulous line-up consisted of AJE, REBECCA VALLANCE, MANNING CARTELL, RACHEL GILBERT AND GINGER & SMART - with the spotlight on some of the very best key trends of the new season.

AJE blazer and trouser

Image Two: MANNING CARTELL bag, AESOP Rosehip Seed Lip Cream and Resurrection Aromatique Hand Balm

AJE are a favourite when it comes to whimsical dresses, sophisticated two pieces and edgy silhouettes! They paved the way with beautiful balloon sleeves, oversized blazers and cut-outs - highlighting some definite wardrobe essentials for Autumn/Winter. One style that is back better than ever: the classic and oh so versatile, trench coat! Keeping the utilitarian trend as strong as ever once again.


Speaking of the utilitarian trend - RACHEL GILBERT have created their very own beautiful rendition of this with a belted jumpsuit, adding their own twist with a silk-blend finish and two-tone colour (this split-colour way also comes in a trench and skirt too!) 

One shade that has won over my heart is all the blue that made its way onto the runway! From a subtle sky-blue to a bold magenta blue - this is the colour that'll be making its way into your wardrobes in no time.  

MANNING CARTELL have created the suiting collection of my dreams, ranging from two-piece sets with matching trousers to jackets that double up as blazer dresses - in pistachio to pale pink to an elegant black. For accessories, they've got you covered with a must-have mini bag of the moment. Paired up with their asymmetrical one-sleeve designs and this is one show-stopping way to make a grand entrance into a room.

Celeste Barber opened the show in the incredible GINGER & SMART Bourgeois Gown, a special piece that oozes absolute glamour. The rose gold and metallic details were prominent throughout their showcase and was the icing on the cake for that effortlessly chic feel Ginger & Smart holds. 

The suiting trend also made another powerful mark with Ginger & Smart creating this dreamy layered masterpiece. This is the perfect modern take on the quintessential suit in a lighter tone - perfect for dressing up with heels or down with a t-shirt.

From floral dresses to 80's inspired minis and scallop edges - I absolutely love all the retro feels this REBECCA VALLANCE collection gave me. Belted dresses are stealing the show this season alongside voluminous sleeves and midi length dresses.


Article written by Arianne Witt

Photography by Tarlie Russell - TR studio

Runway photography courtesy of The Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival, Shop The Run