Let’s face it, if you head straight home after attending a Virgin Australian Melbourne Fashion Festival event, it’s a waste of good make-up and a meticulously planned outfit. Some of the shows are over in flash. So plan a proper outing of it and hit up a suitably stylish bar or restaurant pre or post-event. We’ve handily paired some great VAMFF happenings to delicious venues around Melbourne for you. Simply matching your shoes to your bag is SO last season. Accessorising fashion with food, anyone?
Fashion Film Series & Loop
The Fashion Film series is a VAMFF event that’s growing in prestige. This year it has attracted big names such Isabel Lucas, Gemma Ward and renowned international model-turned-photographer Ellen Von Unwerth to the schedule. Catch this year’s best fashion films on screen at Fed Square, then trip over a few blocks to Loop to keep the night’s artistic theme running. You might find a forum on architecture or an exhibition on consumerism awaits, before you head on up to their rooftop bar.
Federation Square, Flinders Street, Melbourne
Until Sunday 15th March, various times
NXK & Easey’s
Nixi Killick’s rainbow sprites will once again take to an offsite runway in her typical techno-dream-like fashion. After watching her hot, young label NXK do its colour-drenched stuff, you’ll want to head to a similarly hot, young place nearby. Luckily you’re already there with the show happening at Collingwood joint Easey’s, which should be newly open by then. Hang around and bring your extra pocket money for meaty burgers or Melbourne Bitter beer battered potato cakes.
NXK A/W 2015, Easey’s, 48 Easey Street Collingwood
Sunday 15th March 6.30pm
Menswear Runway & Kelvin Club
Boys night out anyone? Fuel up before the show at former private men’s club Kelvin Club for a suitably masculine St Patrick’s Day themed menu. Think Guinness pie or salmon marinated in whiskey. Then figure out how to dress like a GQ model this winter by watching Arthur Galan AG, Bassike, Calibre, Vanishing Elephant and MJ Bale’s seasonal offerings on the runway.
Menswear Runway, Peninsula, Central Pier, Docklands
Friday 20th March 9.30pm
National Graduate Showcase & Lui Bar
The next generation of fashion designers often produce a showcase that’s colourful, crazy and thrilling. So you want to head somewhere just as inspirational and talent-fuelled afterwards. While you might not be able to fit Vue De Monde into the budget, you can surely stretch to a tipple at Lui Bar (plus you’ll be in dire need of a drink after a show this long). Check out the apt ‘Tomorrow’ section of Lui’s menu which features cutting edge techniques like fat washing and vacuum evaporation.
National Graduate Showcase, Peninsula, Central pier, Docklands
Thursday 19th March, 9.30pm
Golden Age & Bar Ampere
Kate Rohde’s wildly original jewellery pieces are inspired by the French Rococo era which was about bucking strict design rules of the time. Bar Ampere is named for a pioneering French mathematician who broke new ground in his field. Sounds like a revolutionary match to us! Go sip some absinthe post-exhibition, like the great Parisian creators and thinkers used to do.
Golden Age, Pieces of Eight Gallery
Tuesday 17th February until Saturday 28th March
Independence & Magic Mountain Saloon
Strateas.Carlucci headlines what must be the coolest runway at VAMFF. The Indy show also features designs from Celeste Tesoriero, Elissa McGowan, Dress Up, Emma Mulholland, Salasai and Pageant, disparate labels which share the tendency to build a cult following. As does fellow label Perks and Mini, who have provided mural artwork for Magic Mountain Saloon. The place attracts a savvy crowd and with modern Thai, American BBQ and DJ tunes on offer it’s as genre-bending as the fashion show will be.
Independence, Peninsula, Central Pier, Docklands
Saturday 21st March, 9.30pm
Block Party & Smith & Daughters
Aiming to assist with employment and education ops for youth with migrant backgrounds, The Social Studio presents Block Party during VAMFF. The party will feature five emerging designers as well as live music, market stalls and things for the little fashionistas in your life to do, as well as food stalls. But if you’re after some heartier nosh or a break from the buzz-y festivities, check out another crew nearby who also have a social conscience. Smith & Daughters’ collection of vegan eats is inspired by Spanish and South American cuisine.
Block Party, Peel Street Park, Corner Peel and Little Oxford Streets, Collingwood
Saturday 14th March, 12pm
Cultural Program Walk & Seamstress
Overwhelmed with what to go to at VAMFF? We don’t blame you. Knock a handful of sights off your list at once with this guided walking tour though the festival’s project series. Once you’ve had your fill of fashion-y brain food, pop into Seamstress for literal food. The pan-asian venue is an obvious choice for a delicious post-VAMFF lunch—it’s housed in an historic 120-year-old textile factory. Plus with light, sharable fare on offer, you’ll still fit into your frock afterwards.
Cultural Program Walking Tour, Pieces of Eight Gallery, 28 Russell Place, Melbourne (meeting pont)
Saturday 7th March, 10.45am