Memorable end to fashion week sees First Nations fashion designers announce the official opening of a pop-up store in Sydney


Fashion week ended last week with an emphatic exclamation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander excellence.

The First Nations Fashion + Design (FNFD) closing show featured designers from across Australia.

FNFD celebrates independent Indigenous designers and supports their growth and development in the fashion industry.

Backed by THE ICONIC, First Nations Fashion + Design wowed a large crowd on Friday night, with female musicians and a mostly female line-up of designers exploring the matriarchal structure of First Nations culture.

And while the event marked the end of a week where fashion was in the spotlight, it was also a new beginning for First Nations fashion.

For Sydneysiders, Election Day this Saturday 21 May will also mark the official opening of the Edit Collection and First Nations Fashion + Design pop-up store in Chatswood on Sydney’s Lower North Shore. It will be open for a month.

Available will be the designs exhibited at Friday’s show.

Designer Paul McCann is a Darwin-born Marrithiyel man and traditional landowner linked to his country, Delye. His trademark designs are described as “bling-bling faboriginality”.(Provided: Lucas Dawson)
A man in a black suit with green leaves and gold adorning the leaves
Paul McCann decided to forgo any formal artistic training in favor of exploring his own creative style and instincts.(Provided: Lucas Dawson)
A woman in an orange dress carrying a bag
The Myrrdah label of Glenda McCulloch and her sisters Juanita, Dale and Cheryl is named after their great-great-grandmother on their mother’s side.(Provided: Lucas Dawson)
A man holding a sign.  He has a scarf draped over his shoulder.
Clothing The Gaps is a health professional run label celebrating Aboriginal people and culture.(Provided: Lucas Dawson)
A man wearing a white shirt and a silver-encrusted black jacket
Designers Aunty Emily Doolah and Sally Jackson are collaborating on the Future of Fashion initiative which creates direct access to the Australian fashion industry through one-on-one mentoring from First Nations designers.(Provided: Lucas Dawson)
Three models in swimsuits walking on the runway in different directions
Bardi, Nyul Nyul, Nyikina woman Nat Dunn’s Ihraa Swim brand was born out of her desire to find the perfect bikini.(Provided: Lucas Dawson)

The theme for the evening was Our Island, Our Home – a campaign by Torres Strait Islanders to raise awareness about climate change.

Christine Anu and Zipporah Corser-Anu, The Merindas and rapper BARKAA performed to enthusiastic audiences.

It was one of those rare events in these pandemic times in that it drew a huge crowd.

And there didn’t seem to be a single person in the audience who didn’t think it was an event worth attending and a fitting conclusion to Fashion Week 2022.

Christine Anu and Zipporah Corser-Anu
Christine Anu and her daughter Zipporah Corser-Anu performed Island Home and Party in front of an effervescent crowd. They wear Erik Yvon. (Provided: Lucas Dawson)
BARKAA is wearing a sequined jumpsuit
Rapper BARKAA performed in a custom jumpsuit designed by AARLI.(Provided: Lucas Dawson)
An audience of people
The closing event of the First Nations Fashion + Design fashion show drew a large and boisterous audience. (Provided: Lucas Dawson)

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