Iconic Melbourne retailer Fat will be showing the brand a bit differently at this year’s L’Oreal Melbourne Fashion Festival (LMFF). Rather than throwing a party they’ll be bringing together a bunch of their closest creative friends to share their wisdom as part of an inspiring fashion conference.

Titled Pale Blue Eyes, the conference will shed light on the current creative climate, with particular emphasis on fashion design, graphic design, store design and media. There to share their experience, wisdom and opinions will be eight speakers including editor of Frankie magazine Jo Walker; editor of ThreeThousand Penny Modra; Barrie Barton from Right Angle Studio; Tin Nguyen and Ed Cutting of Studio Tin & Ed; fashion designer Carly Hunter; Nella Themelios of Craft Victoria; and FAT owners Rachael Cotra and Kym Purtell.

“We have a lot of contacts within fashion as well as a lot of strong links within different creative areas. We thought it would be a good idea to get everyone together to share their knowledge,” says Kym of the decision to present the conference.

These connections are thanks to FAT’s reputation as a leading boutique as well as as a nurturer for young talent. The boutique’s annual t-shirt exhibition as part of Melbourne Spring Fashion Week fosters local talent and brings the creative community together to view designs by up-and-coming talent.

Much like the t-shirt exhibition, Kym says that Pale Blue Eyes is aimed at becoming an annual LMFF event, encouraging a regular dialogue between professionals and aspiring creatives. “We’re always really interested in talking to people, and sharing those discussions with others,” she explains.

“A lot of the designers we work with actually come from different backgrounds, such as architecture or art. I find it’s always interesting to find out where people started, how they developed their skills and transferred them to different aspects of design, as well as how they interact with the current working environment that we’re in and how they deal with the challenge of creative business models.”

As inspiring as the conference is set to be, this new direction towards more professional events may have some worried that FAT’s party-throwing days are over. But Kym assures us that this is not the case. “We love parties, and we’ll still having parties!”

FAT presents Design Assembly Pale Blue Eyes creative conference will take place at Curtin House on March 15 from 1-4pm.