It’s hard to describe the allure of a fashion event called Head Babes In Charge. Actually, no it isn’t. Natural selection kicks in – the strongest of the style set clap eyes on the show’s name and are instantly attracted.

 

On Sunday, Melbourne’s most flamboyant stylists will flock together like a congregation of eagles, raining sartorial grandeur on an otherwise bleak Docklands. Fiercely independent designers Alice Edgeley, Kathryn Jamieson of Gun Shy Design and Nikita Margarita of Doodad and Fandango will host their first group runway show as part of VAMFF’s Offsite Runway program, and it promises to be an eye searing fashion fest, with a cacophony of faux fur, exaggerated everything, and a colour explosion, to boot.

In possibly one of the busiest weeks of their lives, each designer shared some insights with us, but of course, none was keen to reveal too much, ahead of the show.

 

Alice Edgeley | Edgeley

‘All the HBIC have vocal fry’

1/ What has the lead time been for your runway show Head Babes In Charge this Sunday with Gun Shy Design and Doodad and Fandango

Urgh, we started organising this in September 2015, but before I could get to doing any real work on the clothes I had to finish the summer collection production, then Christmas is a busy period for custom made and also retail. After Christmas I had my honey moon (3 years late) and first proper holiday in 5 years. So though I had sketches and ideas I didn’t actually start on HBIC until I got back from holidays, i had 6 weeks to  create th whole thing and put all of our show ideas into action.

2/ The show is described as ‘a celebration of the power of glamour, women in rock and the joyful irreverence of pop art.’ – how did the show (& participants) come about?

Kathryn and I were just brainstorming  ideas for a show, we knew we wanted to work with Nikita and it just snow balled from there. We kind of just asked all the coolest girls we know to be involved.

3/ What sort of brief were you given, if any?

We weren’t given a brief, we made it up. I mentioned having vocal fry and Kim Boekbinder said “all the HBIC have vocal fry” I didn’t know what HBIC stood for and when she told me, well, I thought, what a compliment. I totally wanna be a HBIC. Now Kim has made us a special HBIC song which we are premiering at the show! Actually VAMFF didn’t want us to call it Head Bitches In Charge so we compromised with Head Babes. It’s perfect for us because we are all Bs running our own businesses.

4/ What are you most excited about for this year?

More collaborations. I’m working with my partner William Griffiths (Metal Couture) and Eryca Green who is a really dreamy photographer, we’ll be doing some work with water, clothes, mirrors and jewels.  I’m looking for some new labels to stock in my shop, I really enjoy having Nikitas work (Doodad and Fandango) and Tusler bags so Im putting feelers out, I love curating the other labels I stock and really putting things in that I would want to buy.
The Garb Wire Alice EDGELEY by Eryca Green
Alice Edgeley in her Fitzroy shop. Photo credit: Eryca Green

 

Kathryn Jamieson | Gun Shy

‘This weekend will be strictly all about my show’.

 

1/ What has the lead time been for your runway show Head Babes In Charge this Sunday with Alice Edgeley and Doodad and Fandango?
6 months.
 

2/ The show is described as ‘a celebration of the power of glamour, women in rock and the joyful irreverence of pop art.’ I knew right away that The Garb Wire had to be present at such an occasion – how did your inclusion come about?
Alice and Nikita are absolute power women that I find incredibly inspiring.  I actually interned with Alice when I was studying at RMIT and we’ve maintained our connection ever since.  I met Nikita through Alice and instantly loved her.  She generously sent down a whole lot of earrings and accessories from Sydney for me to use in my very first look book last year. I guess Birds of a Feather Flock together. We are all unique, strong women pursuing labels that are small, style and creative based.  Of course we were going to come together.  We had the idea to do a show together I think, from about mid last year.  HBIC is born and it isn’t going to go away.

 

‘I guess Birds of a Feather Flock together.’


3/ What sort of brief were you given, if any?  
No brief.  We just got together and have systematically nutted it out together.  Our process has involved emails, phone calls, skype sessions, visits to each others ateliers.  We collaborated under the them of Head Babes In Charge and allowed ourselves to take that wherever we wanted.  We knew we would show all the clothes together but each designer has created their own pieces under this strong feminine theme.  We are all pretty much on the same page and it has been an incredible fabulous process.

4/ How long does it take you to produce a collection for a runway show?
My jackets are incredibly laborious.  This collections has taken 4 months to make, 2 months r&d.  I knew I was going to make this collection a year in advance, at least.  I visited my fur supplying in March last year to make sure the furs I wanted would be available.  I change things up for myself every collection, push boundaries, try different things.  This collection I started with the fabric choices and then made the designs.  I enjoy process and so I allowed myself time to really play with pattern development especially.

5/ What can we expect to see from you on Sunday?

‘My collection – PIMP IT BITCH – is eye popping madness.’

I can not wait to explode these uber bright, fluffball, crazy pieces onto the world.  All three collections, plus the Preston Zly shoes, plus the make up by Lou McLaren and Steph Elkington, plus hair by James the Hairdresser and the Kevin Murphy team, plus an original HBIC track by Kim Boekbinder, plus dj’ing by Tanzer plus lighting by Robbie Cole, plus choreography by Natalie Abbott & Dan Newell, plus the incredible array of models we have – will combine to make one helluva show.  Watch Out is all I can say.
RLP-Rubber-City-Rebels-Editorial-Full-Res-27
RLP Rubber City Rebels from a previous Gun Shy collection. Photo credit: Rupert Laycock

 

Nikita Margarita | Doodad + Fandango

1/ What has the lead time been for your runway show Head Babes In Charge this Sunday with Gun Shy Design, Edgeley?

I am trying to remember back to when we first starting talking about this event and it was about a year ago. However things got real a couple of months ago when we were accepted by VAMFF to be part of their Offsite Runway program.

2/ The show is described as ‘a celebration of the power of glamour, women in rock and the joyful irreverence of pop art.’ – how did your inclusion come about?

About a year ago I came down to Melbourne (from Sydney where I am based) to meet Alice Edgeley and attend a launch of her collection at her boutique on Gertrude St. I had been making jewellery for her shop Edgeley for a few months and had made some pieces for her show. I had so much fun and met lots of Alice’s friends, including Kathyrn – Head Babe at GUNSHY. Kathyrn ended up borrowing some of my doodads for a look-book shoot and a collaboration between the 3 of us just seemed like the natural conclusion!

nikki

‘We are all similar in that we are basically one woman operations who design and hand make everything ourselves. I think we all love each other’s aesthetic and I for one am just in LOVE with them, and the passion and energy they have for their craft.’

3/ What sort of brief were you given, if any?
Alice is the best curator of inspirational images and has the most incredible Pinterest boards I have ever seen! These images teamed with Kathyrn’s sketches and fabrics and photos of works in progress were the brief I was working with.

4/ How long does it take you to produce one pair of your iconic earrings?
It depends on the complexity of design and the urgency of the request! I can design, cut out and assemble a pair of earrings in one day if I have a clear idea of what I want and a stylist breathing down my neck. Other times it takes weeks to tweak a design and a couple of re-makes until I’m happy with it.

5/ What are you most excited about for this year?

Well last year was so amazing for my little label with the Gorman co-lab, and a couple of really fun things are in store for this year as well. I have just made some cute emoji tampon earrings that Cottons Australia will be selling to raise money for Share the Dignity, an organisation that provides free sanitary products to homeless and at risk women.

I am working on a new collection that is a collaboration of sorts with a stylist friend Bettina McIlwraith, we have been talking about it for ages and once the HBIC show is over I am itching to start work on that.

POSTCARD NEW

Need to Know:

  • Catch the 86, 35 or 70 tram all the way to the last stop (D11) at Harbour Town
  • Sunday, 28 February 2016 from 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM
  • Food Court – 427 Docklands Drive, Waterfront City, near the grass amphitheatre. (In front of Harbour Town). Docklands. Melbourne
  • Head Babes In Charge – VAMFF 2016 – Offsite Runway
  • RSVP on Eventbrite 

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