The days of being out every weekend are beyond me. I just don’t have the energy or the desire. Worse still, I have become one of those people who sees events or functions as they are being advertised – at the time, I am super hyped about going – but when it comes to the day of actually going, I can think up a million excuses not to go.
It’s cold outside. Nothing that I want to wear fits properly at the moment. Is it today? I am not ready to leave the baby alone. How long is the event going to be for? The baby is teething. If I go now, it will ruin the baby’s routine.
You get the idea.
What can I say? After a grueling work week of barely seeing my babies (Husbae and our baby girl), when the weekend comes I just want to enjoy the company of my little family. Plus Canberra is cold. You basically spend six months of the year hibernating, praying to God that you don’t pile on the pounds from all the delicious winter food you consume.
But I digress.
I first caught a glimpse of the FASHFEST advertisement about six weeks prior to the event. A friend of mine tagged me in a photo of an African designer who would be showcasing her designs and said, “We have to go to this!” I have to admit, I was initially amused. I even chuckled to myself that Canberra was hosting a fashion event. Being relatively new in town this was something I didn’t even know existed. The advert campaign promised it to be a “celebration of fashion, arts and culture, packed with stylish runway shows featuring stunning models, extraordinary hair and makeup, live music, exclusive behind the scenes backstage tours, glamorous VIP events parties and more.” Well, they certainly caught my attention.
From what I have observed – people in Canberra don’t like colour. I see a lot of black, grey, white and blue. Is it weather related? Maybe. So I wondered, what was going to be on the runway? What kind of Canberrans would attend this event? I was somewhat curious and I promised my friend that we would check out the Fashion festival in our humble capital city. With that, we purchased the tickets, thus putting my money where my mouth was – there was no way I was going to PIKE.
Fast forward to the first day of October and it was time. On the night of the event, I decided to pay homage to my Zimbabwean background by wearing African print – you know how we do. I added some extra drama by pairing the look with a faux fur throw, some ridiculously tall heels and just for this occasion the Chanel bag came out of the safe. You know it, I was ready to show out.
- The show was running behind schedule from the jump. The event was supposed to start at 8:30pm but we were still waiting in the pre-event area until at least 9pm.
- The one designer- Queen Nyibany Designs – who was supposed to be closing FASHFEST– well let’s just say she cancelled last minute. We received notification of this in our program handbook. There wasn’t even on announcement at the event or social network pages. We were not happy when we stumbled across this information. She was the draw card that got us dressed to the nines and ready for a night out in Canberra.
- The designs shown on the runway were a little out there – for the most part (about 65 percent) I couldn’t imagine someone in their right mind actually wearing it. It would have been nice for them to incorporate wearable pieces for the everyday Canberrans – to be fair the clothes were visually enticing.
- There was a LOT of alcohol ready for consumption at the venue. It would have been nice if there was food available i.e. canapes, mini burgers etc. Just giving my two cents as a fashionable and fabulous breastfeeding mother.
- We arrived at the Convention Centre and we were pleasantly surprised by the red carpet. For some reason, I thought it was going to be hosted at a dodgy and badly lit venue. When we saw the favorable lighting, red carpet, the professional photographers – we were more than happy to pose for the cameras.
- My friend ended up knowing the Production Manager for the event and he upgraded us to front row seats. It was a real Cinderella moment. For a night we were part of the high-flying glitterati. Champagne glass in hand and goodie bags to go.
- Oftentimes, fashion shows do not feature many women of colour. Just white on white on white. I was impressed by the variety of colour, shape and size of the women and men on the catwalk. The designers understand diversity. Standing ovation for that alone.
- The live music was insanely good showcasing all the talent that Canberra has to offer, we were so privileged to experience it – we were literally dancing in our seats.
Overall I have to say it was a well-organised event that made it worthwhile to take a break from being a mum and wife. Definitely one of the social highlights of my year.. Next year will be the 5th year of FASHFEST and the organisers have promised bigger and better plans for 2017.
I, for one, will not miss it!