Image by Dylan Buckee

The David Jones Indigenous Fashion Projects (IFP) Runway was held last Thursday at Australian Fashion Week, featuring the return of five IFP Pathway Program designers: GALI Swimwear, Ihraa Swim, JOSEPH & JAMES, Lazy Girl Lingerie, and Miimi & Jiinda.

Under the creative concept of ‘In Relation Way’, the runway showcased collections that wove together stories of legacy, matriarchy, honor, connection, arrival, and Country.

As attendees entered the show, they were greeted by ‘Martuwarra’, a series of 8 panels created by Walmajarri women, artists, and sisters Sonia Kurarra and Daisy Japulija from Mankaja Arts and Resource Agency. These panels signify the importance of family and connection, celebrating the beauty of Country and its contemporary expression through the work of some of the most remote and masterful Indigenous artists of our time. This spectacular installation is the culmination of years of exploration and innovative art practice at Mangkaja.

The runway began with an Acknowledgement of Country by Gadigal Elder Yvonne Weldon, accompanied by a soundscape and walk tracks created and curated by Darwin-based Music Director James Mangoihg. The event featured a performance by Garuwa Cultural Immersions, led by Stuart McMinn and accompanied by Jo Clancy from Wagan.

Leading the runway was Creative Director and Showteam Manager Michelle Maynard, Manager of Indigenous Fashion Projects, in collaboration with Head Stylist Lindyn Rowland, a Wiradjuri and Waiben Island man, and Head Stylist Mentor Karinda Mutabazi.

‘In Relation Way’ honors and celebrates Miimi and Jiinda, GALI Swimwear, Ihraa Swim, Lazy Girl Lingerie, and JOSEPH & JAMES’ commitment to their practice, their growth, and all that they have shared along the way across their 24-month journey in the IFP Pathways Program.

A big thank you to the incredible team, both behind the scenes and in the audience, and to those watching online. Your continuous support is greatly appreciated.

Show team include:

  • Show Caller and Production Assistant, IFP Project Manager Alira McKenzie-Williams
  • Hair Director Kristy Hodgson, Redken
  • Makeup Director Lara Srokowski, Lancôme
  • Show design by Samantha Perry, Claire Summers, Shilo McNamee, Alira McKenzie-Williams, Belinda Cook
  • Choreography by Leanne Churney
  • Show Producer, Cat Rose & Team 
  • On-site Music Director Gary Sinclair 
  • Event Management by Claire Summers, DAAF Foundation
  • Event and Operations Director by Sammy Perry, DAAF Foundation
  • Marketing and Communications by Ellie Meyer and Maya Johnson, DAAF Foundation
  • Photography by Marley Morgan & Dylan Buckee, DAAF Foundation
  • Publicity & Ticketing by David Jones & AMPR 
  • Accessories by 
  • kika, Killicrankie Diamond by Janice Ross
  • Gaawaa Miyay by Lucy Simpson
  • Clothing the Gaps 
  • Gammin Threads by Tahnee Edwards
  • Rowland Vision by Lindyn Rowland
  • Yangurrdi by Cassie Leatham
  • Koori Circle by Laura Thompson
  • Takari Art by Carly Dodd
  • David Jones
  • Cleopatra’s Bling
  • VEJA
  • Lacoste
  • Dune London
  • Jac + Jack

Now, let’s look at their collections! 

GALI Swimwear by Kamilaroi man David Leslie, in collaboration with Barkinji and Malangapa artist Jasmine Miikika Craciun presents latest collection, Patterns of Country. It speaks to the deep respect First Nations communities hold for Country, and for the importance of sustainability in preserving what we have for future generations.

This collection will be available late August 2024.

Images by  Getty Images

Lazy Girl Lingerie by Waayni woman Cassandra Pons presents ‘Ocean Eyes’. A collection inspired by caring for Country, in particular our beautiful ocean and the connection we feel to the sea. The collection feels ethereal and ambient with natural cotton fabrics brought to life in the understated glamour of Lazy Girl Lingerie’s signature style.

This collection will be available from November 2024. 

Images by Getty Images

Ihraa Swim by Nat Dann, a Bardi, Nyul Nyul, Nyikina woman, debuted her new collection ‘Wildscape’, a collection that brings the natural world to life in abstract, textured forms. Inspired by the diverse textures of the land, this range reimagines the beauty of nature in modern, innovative ways. 

This collection will be available from September 2024.

Images by Getty Images

JOSEPH & JAMES by Gooreng Gooreng and South Sea Islander woman, Juanita Page presents Part Three: The Josephs’. The collection is inspired by key eras that her grandfather and father lived through as they each navigated early adulthood as Aboriginal, South Sea Islander and Samoan. Designs from the collection bridges the past and present, layering of modernity, the absence of a jacket lapel, the signature oversized pockets, or the brand’s street-inspired silhouettes. 

This collection will be available from August 2024.

Images by Getty Images

Miimi and Jiinda by Gumbaynggirr, Dunghutti and Bundjalung Nyami women Melissa Greenwood & Lauren Jarrett presents collection Yarilla ‘ To Illuminate’. The capsule collection consists of runway ready high end fashion and wearable art garments that “illuminate the beauty of Gumbaynggirr Culture”.

This collection is available from May 2024.

Images by Getty Images

Backstage, David Jones Indigenous Fashion Projects Runway, Australian Fashion Week, 2024, Photo by Suleiman Thomas