Afterpay Australian Fashion Week (AAFW) 2021: What you need to know

Afterpay Australian Fashion Week is coming. Here's your complete guide to the newly designed fashion show.

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Afterpay is the new title sponsor of Australian Fashion Week. If you're a fashion junkie, you'll know that the event was previously known as the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia (MBFWA), but this has now changed.

The very first Afterpay Australian Fashion Week (AAFW) will run from 31 May until 4 June.

Do you want to be the first to know anything and everything about AAFW? Bookmark this page – we'll have all the details as soon as they drop, including daily updates on all your favourite shows.

About Afterpay Australian Fashion Week 2021

Get ready to feast your eyes on all the latest and greatest Resort '22 collections, from all your favourite fashion designers.

The very first AAFW will run from 31 May until 4 June, and it will be held at Carriageworks and other select venues throughout Sydney. While we still don't know how the actual event will look due to COVID-19, we do know that there will be a mix of live and digital spaces, offering quite the dynamic fashion week experience.

Carriageworks is a registered COVID-Safe business. In line with recent regulations, all visitors are required to wear a face mask in all public spaces, the Bay 21 Exhibition space and the theatre spaces.

If you're interested, you can check out our guide on where to shop for fashionable but protective face masks.

The Afterpay Australian Fashion Week 2021 program

While we're yet to see the full runway schedule, we do know which shows will be made available to the public:

  • Monday 31 May: AAFW Opening Night Runway
  • Tuesday 1 June: AAFW Bassike Runway
  • Wednesday 2 June: AAFW KITX Runway
  • Thursday 3 June: AAFW Manning Cartell Runway
  • Friday 4 June: AAFW Future of Fashion Runway

There's also a number of different talking sessions from industry leaders, running from Monday 31 May until Thursday 3 June. Tickets for these talks are $59, while the runway shows range from $119 to $349.

Keen to get your hands on tickets for you and your friends? Click here to shop.

How will AAFW 2021 be different to previous years?

Afterpay acknowledges that the future of fashion is upon us. We are at a point in time where diversity and inclusion are at the forefront of our conversations.

So how will the Afterpay Australian Fashion Week align with this? By including a mix of new and emerging local designers, and having a focus on sustainability and diversity. This may be through a gender-neutral collection or with a commitment to ethical production practices.

Natalie Xenita is the executive director of IMG's fashion events group. In a press release, she said:

"Over the past 25 years, Australian Fashion Week has established itself as one of the world's most innovative fashion showcases, right here in Sydney. Now more than ever, we recognise the need to come together to ensure the Australian fashion industry will continue to thrive for decades to come."

For the first time ever, designer participation fees will be covered by Afterpay. Instead, designers will be invited to show on the official AAFW schedule. That way, more Australian designers will have the chance to be connected with the world's leading buyers and media.

Industry delegates, inclusive of global media and stockists, will also have their AAFW registration and attendance fees waived in 2021.

Australian Fashion Week facts

  • Australian Fashion Week was founded in 1996 by PR guru Simon Lock.
  • Wayne Cooper, Alex Perry and Akira Isogawa have showcased collections in the debut event.
  • Simon Lock sold the event to IMG in 2005.
  • In 2006, the event was sponsored by Rosemount Estate wineries and named Rosemount Australian Fashion Week.
  • In 2011, the sponsorship was passed to Mercedes-Benz.
  • In 2013, the MBFWA moved its primary location from the Passenger Terminal in Circular Quay to Carriageworks in Redfern.
  • MBFWA 2020 was meant to be the 25th-anniversary edition, but was unfortunately cancelled due to COVID-19.
  • In October 2020, IMG announced Afterpay as the new title sponsor.

More from fashion

Main image: Australian Fashion Week

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