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David Jones

Runway Report: SS16 Collections Launch

Held twice a year, the David Jones new season fashion launch is one of the most highly anticipated events in Australia; and at the start of February and August, Australians have come to expect a grand show, a celebration of the best of Australian fashion, from the nation’s most venerable department store.

And for Spring Summer 2016, you can expect the same grandeur from the David Jones Collections Launch, but prepare to be delighted with a quite a few surprises. Indeed, the SS16 Collections Launch was a night full of newness and ’firsts’, significantly marking the start of David Jones’ new brand promise, ‘One Name: Endless Possibilities.’

Read on for a recap of everything you need to know about the David Jones SS16 Collections Launch:

The Set

Held at Fox Studios in Sydney, this is the first time the event has been taken offsite in the past seven years. The large space echoed the vast city of New York, the inspiration behind the Spring Summer 16 campaign, and whose skyline and motifs were dramatically projected against a billowing silk backdrop and lit up by pulsing neon lights. The set was distinctly urban, even more so with the slick black runway which ran over 35 metres in length.

The Show

With over 235 looks, the season’s key trends came to life on the runway at the hands of renowned stylist and long-time friend and collaborator of David Jones, Kelvin Harries and Emma Lunn. Almost 60 brands were showcased, from Australian designer favourites such as Camilla, Dion Lee and Christopher Esber, as well as contemporary international designers with the likes of Maje, Alexander Wang and Paul Smith. A slew of new swim and active brands were also introduced to the David Jones brand family, including Boardies, Milea, P.E Nation, Stella McCartney swim and The Upside menswear.

Opening the show was Romance Was Born, celebrating their 10-year brand anniversary, whilst Zimmermann had the coveted closing position, showcasing the brand's impressive new season collection alongside a special performance by Australian rock royalty, The Preatures of their hit song, ‘Is This How You Feel?.’ 

The Models

David Jones' 'rare birds' featured prominently on the runway, with Jessica Gomes, looking enigmatic with light blonde hair, opening the show. She is joined by fellow ambassadors Jesinta Campbell and Jason Dundas, as well as model Montana Cox and international supermodels Jarrod Scott, Charlee Fraser and Gemma Ward, who will be remembered in history as one of the first models to be pregnant walking for the David Jones show. 

David Jones also has a strong heritage of discovering new talent and this continues to be true this season with the runway filled with up and coming ‘faces to watch’ including Yunji Kang, Gabi Borchers, and New Zealand girls Evelina Milward and Natarsha Orsman.

The Music

Another long time collaborator with David Jones, DJ Jonny Seymour was once again at the helm of the soundtrack for the SS16 Collections Launch. The lively, unique & stimulating soundtrack featured tracks by the most exciting artists in contemporary music such as Bjork, Bat for Lashes, Zhu, Weiss and Chemical Brothers, plus local Australian artists including The Avalanches and Rüfüs. 

Performing for the first time for David Jones are The Preatures led by singer Isabella Manfredi, performing live on the runway as well as at the event after-party.

The Fashion

And of course, the fashion. A new Spring Summer season demands a promise of new beginnings and exciting adventures, and the carefully curated fashion shown on the runway of Collections Launch did not disappoint. From the bold revival of lustrous metallics, millennial takes on the ‘70s trend of retro prints and graphics, or the sultry suggestion of boudoir dressing, there was a sense of new horizons and daring confidence to wake anyone up from their winter doldrums. Shop the looks from the runway.

Missed the show?

Another impressive first, the David Jones SS16 Collections Launch was live-streamed on Facebook Live, with several cameras documenting different areas of the show including from the front row and the models' exit before they take their turn on the runway. Watch it here and feel transported to the night of the event.

Explore the David Jones SS16 campaign.