Friday, 10 April 2009

Romance Win Over Woolmark

Gleeful smiles were on the faces of the eagerly awaiting audience as the winner 'Romance Was Born' was announced at the prestigious Designer Award 2009 presented by Woolmark and supported by Vogue at the L’Oreal Melbourne Fashion Festival on March 17.

Designers Anna Plunkett and Lukes Sales of Romance Was Born were selected from a stellar line up of finalists which included Therese Rawsthorne and Antipodium from the Little Hero stable and also the talented Konstantina Mittas, Ellery and Gary Bigeni. Designers showed collections with a wool slant to demonstrate their innovative use of the fibre and proved that there is some exciting new talent on Australian shores paving the way for our future.

Romance Was Born received a standing ovation for their Autumn Winter 'Yeti Magic' collection from industry members, designers including Akira Isogawa and one very proud mother of designer Luke Sales. Their collection showed their bold craftmanship that is truly innovative and was a definite stand out of the show.

Anna Plunkett says, "We're really excited that our work translates - we are bold and innovative in the way we design so it's good to know people can appreciate it." Luke Sales comments on the timeliness of their win, "The award couldn't have come at a better time for us. We love wool and have always used it since graduating but now is our time to fully explore it. We're really excited."

Last year's winner Ben Pollitt of Friedrich Gray was one of the judges for the award this year and was at the show offering support for his peers; he pointed out the outstanding calibre of the finalists, 'It's so great to see so much new talent, it was really difficult to make our selection on the winner, Romance Was Born's collection was incredibly strong and bold - they can stand up on an international stage, their show would have been equally impressive in New York, Paris or Milan.'

The Designer Award is the 'jewel of the crown' at LMFF according to Festival Director, Karen Webster which she says is a stand out event followed closely by the Government House Opening Party where both Friedrich Gray and Romance Was Born were presented as 'The Future' alongside Dion Lee in a presentation covering a century of international fashion. 'The future' of Australian fashion is bright indeed, so while some may fade away there is a new breed of talent bursting through to shine, from the buzz of online blogging to prestigious awards like the Woolmark Designer Award it's becoming clearer that consumers and industry are ready for change with designers who make strong statements. As the motto of LMFF stated 'Ban the bland.' Bring it on we say!

View the Designer Award show online at -

No comments: