16 November 2023

Melbourne Fashion Week 2023: A Dream Realised

Written by Macey (@hairbymaceyy)

From a 5 year old with a dream to combine her love for hair and fashion into a whirlwind future. To a quiet night planning my 2023 career goals on my Grandads sofa back home in the UK. To stepping on a plane to Melbourne Fashion Week with a Redken Styling Crew pass in hand.

Having a dream come true is one thing, let alone it being everything you could have ever imagined and more. And that’s exactly what Melbourne Fashion Week 2023 was. It was a week of creativity, learning, passion, hair, fashion, beautiful people, laughing, incredible venues and so much more. It was a whirlwind of a week and I had the time of my life.

Show 1, Pool deck, brought us a collective of designers which brought a collective of looks. The enhancement of natural texture with an undone but done feel made its way onto the runway which was positioned on a rooftop deck around a pool. 

Show 2 was Fashion X Theatre and it was exactly what you’d expect. A theatrical showcase of fashion. The styling only went and complimented this with sculptural hair couture. The larger than life Regent Theatre was buzzing with models who’s looks varied from gold glitter painted onto their hair to the perfectly sculpted ponytails. 

Ganbu Marra was Show 3 of the week. This show was one that touched many hearts, not only the models, styling crew and the team backstage; but people around the world and everyone who stepped into the Lume Theatre. From having all our models being First Nation, to the theatre being lit up with aboriginal paintings, to the celebration of Australia’s people and a traditional song by the designers Granddaughter. We had space buns with dramatised texture, and edging around the hairline to enhance natural facial features. We also had wet waves with the natural curls of our models being enhanced at the mid lengths and ends. 

Show 5 was the Commons Collective Dining show. With drinks flowing and food being served, our models showcased looks for a collective of designers. A sleek, slicked back, glossy ‘Versace’ ponytail was one of the looks for this show. It had two inches of binding out from the base of the ponytail to elevate and dramatise it slightly. 

For Show 6 we had Strateus Calluci. The look was lived in, disheveled hair. It was soft and subtle and then a headband made with face tapes was added as a hair accessory. This hair perfectly complimented the ‘Worn Out’ feel of the garments. Along with this, the runway was situated in an abandoned garage which together created this perfect masterpiece feeling of high end looks done in an undone way, in an undone setting. 

Show 7 followed straight after show six, and this time it was a collection of designers being showcased for the ‘Underground Runway’. The look for this was ‘Late 90’s – early 2000’s bombshells’. The shiny, big bouncy blow-out made its way down the runway and stood out in the somewhat opposite setting of the abandoned garage. 

For Show 8 we had ‘Pop up 1’. Our models made their way along the South Bank River on a sunny Friday morning. The hair for this was another wet look and was designed to feel like the models had just stepped out of the water. The pearl like features that were added to the makeup as well as the styling made this look come together perfectly to bring a mermaid feel to the models.

After Fashion Week had made its way around Melbourne City, we returned to the Abandoned Garage for the ‘Student Runway’ which was Show 9. The idea for this show was to turn the models into mannequins to make sure the clothing was showcased in a stripped back way. And that’s exactly what we did. We executed sleek wig wraps so the hair was wrapped precisely around the head. It was then painted with clay to enhance the look of the mannequin head we were creating. 

To wrap up Melbourne Fashion Week with show 10 we had the incredible ‘101 Collins’ show. This iconic location is where art stirs creativity. The look for this runway taught us how to channel a character and create a cohesive look for the models no matter what the hair type. The idea was a slick back on each side, like the character had a hair full of gel and has pulled a comb out of their leather jacket and is fixing their hair back on the sides. Just like Danny Zuko from Grease I guess – well that’s the character I channeled for this look anyway. This look made its way through 101 Collins with it’s marble pillars, perfectly polished floors, high ceilings and marble statues. It was the perfect setting, the perfect runway and the perfect evening show to close Melbourne Fashion Week 2023.

And just like that, a 22 year dream in the making became a reality. From the 5 year old with a dream to combine her love for hair and fashion into a whirlwind future. To a quiet night planning my 2023 career goals on my Grandads sofa back home in the UK. To stepping on a plane to Melbourne Fashion Week with a Redken Styling Crew pass in hand. To a room filled with beautiful people I had met that week congratulating each other, with exhausted hugs and tired eyes but our cups so full, souls filled with so much passion, and all feeling a mixture of emotion. We sighed with relief that we had done it, the pride we felt knowing what we had just achieved and the heart sinking feeling of already missing the backstage buzz and the week long whirlwind of Fashion Week. My dream had come true and I couldn’t believe it. I can’t wait to live out the next dream and see where that takes me too.