By the LFW team.
K-pop. Gangnam style. Streetwear. Unique fashion that has influenced the world. It’s all happening in Korea and it won’t be long before one of Canberra’s award-winning fashion designers is immersed in the exciting and pervasive fashion scene happening in Seoul.
Alice Sutton, of local, independent label Edition, has won a place in the new Emerging Designer Exchange Program, which sees three Aussie fashion designers and three Korean fashion designers get together to share knowledge, skills and ideas and boost their brands. Alice flies to Seoul in March.
The program, being run by Queensland University of Technology and Seoul National University, is designed to connect designers with fashion industry professionals, designers, artists and manufacturers in both countries.
Alice is over the moon at the opportunity. She’s the only Canberra designer on board and can’t wait to dive in to the extensive program, which will see the designers attend Seoul Fashion Week, Christian Dior’s flagship store in Seoul (all five stories), workshops in Brisbane and Sydney Fashion Week in May. “It’s about sharing knowledge, skills and ideas,” says Alice. “It’s fabulous to connect with other designers, including from other cultures, and see how it influences my future design work.”
Melanie Finger, a fashion lecturer at QUT, is working with the Australia–Korea Foundation on the two-year program. “The judges were impressed by Alice’s sustainable focus, her motivation, her design process, unique Australian style and more,” says Melanie. “The competition was tough with the quality of applications from across the country high.”
Melanie says the program is designed to help participants ‘fast track their brands immeasurably, on both a national and international scale’ and so Alice will connect with Korean and Australian fashion industry professionals, designers, artists and manufacturers. ”It’s such a unique opportunity to think about taking Edition to Korea,” says Alice, “and an amazing chance to build international business connections and export knowledge.”
It’s been a busy few months for Alice, who launched her latest collection, Reveal, at FASHFEST 2016. Shortly after the event, Melanie contacted FASHFEST organisers and asked them to promote the exchange program to designers. FASHFEST did, and Alice was one they contacted. Her application was a standout, says Melanie. Narrowed down to one of the top seven applicants from across Australia, Alice was next interviewed and then waited for the big decision. The rest is history.
Alice’s aesthetic is unique and carefully considered and her garments are highly wearable and transcend fast-fashion trends. We can’t wait to see how she incorporates her Korean inspiration into her next collection. The possibilities are endless for such a talented designer who does Canberra proud at every turn.
Edition designs are available at Assemblage Project in Braddon.