Melbourne Fashion Week is upon us. And this year’s program is packed with plenty of free and ticketed events to attend. Whether you’re a die-hard fashion lover or have an interest in conversations around sustainability and the future of the industry in Australia, there’s plenty to get involved in. These are the shows and workshops we’re most excited to book this season.

Ganbu Marra Runway

The Ganbu Marra runway celebrates emerging First Nations fashion talent. Building on the success of its debut show in 2022, this year’s line-up includes pieces from Clair Helen, Elverina Johnson x Taking Shape, Ginny’s Girl Gang, Ihraa Swim, Ikuntji Artists and more. The show will be staged at The Lume, where a backdrop of hypnotic projections by First Nations artists will bathe the space and immerse the audience in a stunning display of visual storytelling. There are two sessions available on Tuesday October 24 and, following each show, guests are invited to explore the Connection exhibition in its entirety.

Ngali High Tea

Ngali is a name to know. The brand collaborates with First Nations artists, adapting their works into printed textiles to create each collection. After debuting at Afterpay Australian Fashion Week (AAFW) in Sydney earlier this year, with the event’s first-ever standalone show by an Indigenous Australian designer, Ngali has cemented itself as a label to watch. This event offers the chance to hear founder and designer Denni Francisco, a proud Wiradjuri woman, speak about her experience in the industry and discuss the impact and opportunities the brand is creating in a Q&A-style conversation on Tuesday October 24. Plus, there’s a menu crafted around Indigenous flavours by the team at Pullman Melbourne on the Park to enjoy.

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Vault Vintage Upcycle Runway

Continuing conversations around sustainability and the future of fashion, the National Trust of Australia (Victoria) will stage a show of upcycled garments using reworked stock from its vintage clothing boutique, Vault. From ultra-avant-garde pieces to more wearable designs, the show features names like Aaron Costa, Amy Cottrell, Chi Weller, Hannah Jane Maybury, Kara Baker, Kuwaii, La Guapa, Millie DeBoo, Smena and Szn. The event will be hosted at the Block Arcade, an iconic Melbourne shopping location, and all of the pieces will be available to purchase after the event on Thursday October 26.

Sustainable Storytelling Workshop

An interactive event for small business owners, designers and emerging industry figures, this workshop looks at the challenges involved in promoting sustainable brands. With the issue of greenwashing in the fashion industry gaining increased attention, engaging conscious customers is important for labels that are working to make a difference. This workshop will empower designers and business owners to know what to say and how to share their message effectively. The event is presented by Collarts at Southbank’s Hanover House on Saturday October 28.

101 Collins Street Runway

On Saturday October 28, the marble columns of 101 Collins Street will set the scene for the ultimate runway. This show will inspire your wardrobe for the party season to come. The line-up features fan favourites like Aje, Bec & Bridge, Bianca Spender and Carla Zampatti, alongside the maximalist aesthetics of Mariam Seddiq, Maara Collective and Nicol & Ford.

Fashion Capsules

Throughout the month of October, visitors can experience a series of exhibitions scattered across the city. Providing local makers and artists, as well as participating cultural institutions, with a platform to display their works, the Fashion Capsules can be found at Collins Square, Queen Victoria Market, Rialto, Collins Place and and State Library Victoria. Each exhibit is centred around a specific theme that tells part of the Australian fashion story. And they’re all free to enjoy.

Melbourne Fashion Week runs from October 23–29. See the full program and plan your visit online.

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