Fabrics of Multicultural Australia supported by Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade NSW, brings you another spectacular annual array of designers and cultural exhibits. Across a full day of activities and a publicly accessible cultural designer exhibit that concludes with a spectacular runway show, audiences will witness a showcase of First Nations, Migrant, International and Refugee designers as they converge and collaborate at a venue great cultural significance, International Convention Centre, Sydney.
FOMA 2020 would like to thank government leaders, partners, foreign governments, and the communities that make this such a diverse and inclusive platform that generates trade opportunities and fosters social cohesion.
What have our previous designers experienced in the past, simply by participating? Click here to read about FOMA 2019 Designer of the year, Anjilla Seddeqi.
Brendan runs his own internationally successful women’s wear fashion label ‘Lennon Courtney’ with his business partner Sonya Lennon. Sonya and Brendan met on the set of their hit TV series “Off the Rails”. It was during this time that they identified a gap in the women’s wear market and thus started their own label. Lennon Courtney’s motto is “We make beautiful clothes for smart women” - our core values are equality, confidence and empowerment. When a woman wears our clothes, Brendan Courtney is a TV presenter for 20 years, a hugely engaging MC and an inspirational speaker and has hosted countless TV series in Ireland and the UK. Brendan is Ireland's first openly Gay TV presenter. He uses his profile to advocate for equality in the areas of health, housing, age and gender. He is was one of the public faces of the ‘yes equality’ marriage referendum and is often called on by corporate clients to speak about equality inclusion and diversity to audiences nation-wide
Established in 2014 as the first China Cultural Centre in the Oceania region and a registered non-profit organization in Australia, China Cultural Centre in Sydney is dedicated to enhancing awareness of and appreciation for Chinese culture and art through various cultural events and activities, as well as fostering friendship and mutual respect between China and Australia.
Located in Sydney CBD, CCC Sydney houses an exhibition hall, a multifunctional hall, a library and classrooms to facilitate a wide range of cultural and art events, including theme cultural weeks, art months, performances, exhibitions, forums, film screenings and training courses.
As an important window to showcase traditional and contemporary Chinese culture through China-Australia cultural exchanges, CCC Sydney develops a serious of brand-identified programs with distinctive cultural features, welcomed by local communities.
Colleen Tighe Johnson is a proud descendant of the First Peoples of Aboriginal Australia. A proud Gomeroi woman, Colleen grew up in Moree, NSW. Colleen uses her fashion as a way to revive Gomeroi Dreaming Stories in today's youth culture. Her brand "Buluuy Mirrii" has been featured in international fashion events including Fashion Speaks International World Fusion Wearable Art 2017 in British Columbia Canada.
For the first time at FOMA, we are collaborating an Australian designer Wendy Scully, a full time milliner who creates bespoke millinery pieces all year round with Indigenous designer, Colleen. Wendy currently works from her retail store/ workshop in Howey Place, Melbourne CBD, which she opened in July 2018. Wendy has combined her over 40 years of experience as a sculptor and textile designer/ teacher to specialize in millinery over the last 6 years.
First Nations People
AZYÄ Swim is the world’s first full-coverage swim and destination-wear brand committed to sustainable fashion. Inspired by a lifestyle that celebrates the ocean and a love affair with contemporary fashion. AZYÄ challenges norms by occupying a rare space where swim meets ready-to-wear, seamlessly fusing fashion and function. Breaking away from the traditional confines of swimwear, AZYÄ’s garments meet the needs of today’s Earth-conscious, sun-conscious and fashion-forward woman who embodies sophistication and values impeccable craftsmanship. Made in Australia using sustainable materials.
It is all about women empowerment. Gina Barjeel is a fashion designer and founder of the Gina Barjeel brand. Her love for fashion design and garment making started at a very young age. Gina moved to Australia in March and launched her brand in December 2018 by successfully initiating and developing a project that provides for vulnerable women of refugee background and gives them the opportunity to up-skill their sewing and fashion techniques. Gina Barjeel is an Ethical fashion brand that creates handmade pieces made in Australia by women. In every collection, Gina is inspired by different cultures and places adding her signature touch of traditional Jordanian and Palestinian embroidery, to her modern and innovative designs. 10% from every purchase will be donated to NGOs to run programs that empower women in Australia to enter the fashion industry and find employment.
Jasmine Jeong was born into hanbok. Her mother made traditional hanbok devotionally and caringly brought down from her own mother the art of sewing and embroidering.
Jasmine has proudly taken on the family business from Seoul, South Korea to Sydney, Australia under the family business operating under ‘limhanbok’ and has assisted in many events including, not limited to, cultural events, NGO, council and government events.
Jasmine is an advocate for volunteering and helping the communities in need of assistance. Her experiences as well as theoretical background in making traditional hanbok for 10 years is her biggest asset. Based on a high understanding of hanbok, she can skillfully use composition methods, patterns, materials, and details to develop various designs ranging from women’s wear to men’s wear
The Biennale of Sydney is one of the leading international contemporary art events in the world. It plays an indispensable role in Australia’s engagement with the world, and a meaningful role in the life of the nation. The Biennale presents the most dynamic contemporary art from around the globe in venues across Sydney with exhibitions that ignite and surprise people, sparking dialogue, cultivating connections and inspiring action through meaningful, shared arts experiences. Established in 1973, it is the third oldest biennial in the world after Venice and São Paulo and the largest exhibition of its kind in Australia. The Biennale of Sydney has commissioned and presented exceptional works of art by more than 1,800 national and international artists from more than 100 countries. The Biennale of Sydney is committed to free access for all and, in 2018, attracted visitation of over 850,000. the highest level in its 45-year history. The Biennale of Sydney amplifies the voices of artists and tells the stories of our global communities, as they drive momentum for lasting cultural change.
Lida Mangal arrived with her family to Peshawar, Pakistan fleeing the civil war in 1994. She, as a young and enthusiastic Afghan woman started working as a Gender Adviser shoulder to shoulder with males in one of the not for profit local organisation called, Agency for Rehabilitation and Energy conservation (AREA) in Peshawar Pakistan.
She advocated that fashion is freedom, and a language spoken by everyone. Lida has encouraged female social mobilizers to use variety of colors in their contemporary and traditional designs. Her thirst and passion for fashion and design never ends,
Lida designed her own clothes as well as her family and friends. She also did fashion consultancy to various afghan designers overseas. Lida always dreams to open the gate to other refugee women to confidently wear colorful clothes and go by their own choices and feel confident what they wear and would like to wear. Fashion is an art not a sin!
Johjos is a celebration of colour, created from wax cotton traditionally born in Indonesia as batiks, transported by the Dutch, and found a welcoming home on the African continent. She is a Nigerian-born, British-Australian whose creativity draws inspiration from her travels, a lust for color and a passion for cultures. she thrives at the intersection of differing cultures meeting. The vibrant pieces range from clothing to handmade accessories, expressing relatable cultural hybridity found amongst today's modern traveling society.
Monica Tovar founded her ethical luxury clothing label in 2012. Inspired by her Latin American heritage, she creates one of a kind and limited edition pieces always loaded with craftsmanship, love and a story to share.
A strong commitment with the environment and the people involved in the process has shifted the design direction from printing to hand-painting. Currently, Monica drives a distinct creative journey that includes hand-painting, embroidering and decorating each garment bringing life and soul to every design. Every step of the process is carefully thought to be kind to the environment and kind to the time of the artisan and collaborators.
Monica Tovar's label exists to celebrate the great diversity of cultures in Australia embracing Colombia and Latin America, encourage the preservation of hand made traditions in any shape of form and most importantly, being a Mum, populate those traditions to the young generations
Five Pleats by Poornima Menon was born out of her love for the handlooms. It is a journey through the heartland of India, through the by lanes where artisans weave, print and embroider to create this mystical, magical garment. Sarees symbolize Indian ethnicity, telling stories that are intrinsically tied with the traditions and folklore of the individual states. Sarees can be improvised to transform the wearer from the demure to the daring, from traditional to modern. Five Pleats is the bridge between the weaver and the wearer.
For second year on row, Chilean designers will showcase at Fabrics of Multicultural Australia.
The Trade Commission of Chile – ProChile & The Embassy of Chile to Australia, are pleased to present Designs from Chile, a collection of 100% handmade products inspired by Chilean first nations.
In this opportunity ProChile is proud to support the participation of design companies led by women.
Francisca, a Masters in Jewellery Design at the College of Fine Arts UNSW trained in architecture, she has always been involved with the arts. Her jewellery aims to capture and transfer identity, history, culture and originality.
TAFE NSW, Fashion Design Western Sydney, is rich in diversity and culture, exploring cultures that make up the region, from community groups through to Higher Education. TAFE NSW would like to introduce you to two of their TAFE NSW high achievers; Caressa Murphy, Aboriginal Fashion Designer and Priscilla Ale, Samoan Fashion Designer.
Designer, artist, educator and storyteller, Caressa Murphy is an Aboriginal Gumbayngirr women passionate about her cultural Aboriginal heritage & Fashion.
Priscilla Ale is a Sydney based Samoan Fashion Designer, inspired by her culture, she uses Traditional Samoan “Elei” prints in her designs.
Hailing from the Northeastern province of Buriram, Wisharawish Akarasantisook is one of Thailand’s most promising young designers in early 2010s. Championing technical mastery, immaculate handicrafts and intricate details on pattern, Wisharawish plays with repetition of forms and geometric shapes. His expressive design oeuvre that engages the viewers’ reaction is an aftermath of his background in dramatic arts.
Wisharawish’s collections are a dialogue between designer and his clothes, and then between the clothes and their viewers.
"Winner" of MANGO fashion awards 4th edition. Including the“Grand Prize”, Onward New Designer Fashion Grand Prix 2008
Tokyo, Japan collection “ Never Ending Story" for Festival International de Mode & de Photographie, Villa Noailles, Hyeres, France 2008.
Zohar Edelshtein Budde's collection is a reflection of her life's journey and her strong belief in peaceful existence for all. Through her creative undertakings, in the process of rewiring of consciousness, she expresses the gifts she has gathered along the way and offers it to you as moments of insight into her soul. Zohar creates one off, memorable wired hand-sculpted jewellery, where every jewel is embedded with light. She offers you this gift and, by that, you are loved!