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Fashion Palette Founder Sonya Mefaddi Talks SS17 Lineup, See Now, Buy Now Concept, More

Jul 27, 2016 10:44 AM EDT
Fashion Palette
(Photo : Courtesy/Fashion Palette)

Fashion Palette, established in 2009 as a platform to celebrate Australian fashion, brings the county's top emerging designers to New York for fashion week each season.

Founded by Sonya Mefaddi, the runway event acts as a way to get Australia's top design talent in front of buyers, press and other industry insiders who travel to NYC for fashion week.

Although NYFW doesn't kick off until September, we recently chatted with Mefaddi about what we can expect from this upcoming season of Fashion Palette, why she started event and much more. Keep reading for the full interview.

(Photo : Courtesy/Fashion Palette)

1. What inspired you to launch Fashion Palette?

"I have always had a love for inspiring others, fashion and events, and when Fashion Palette launched in 2009, it was a conference-style event, where a collection of fashionpreneurs came together to share their own success stories and their creative process and techniques. Fashion Palette was inspired by the need to create a consumer-driven fashion event in Sydney, Australia. In 2007, when the concept was developed, there were no fashion events, and so it developed overtime into local and international runway platforms, supporting and nurturing Australian fashion."

(Photo : Courtesy/Fashion Palette)

2. Tell us more about the designers presenting at NYFW in September and why they were selected.

"This September, we have a collection of women's ready-to-wear and swim/resort wear Australian designers presenting their spring/summer 2017 collections. Each were selected for their design aesthetic, originality and price points, which we feel are worth presenting to U.S. buyers/media/stylists."

(Photo : Courtesy/Fashion Palette)

3. How has Fashion Palette evolved throughout the years?

"Fashion Palette continually evolves each year, from its early beginnings as a conference-style event, showcasing emerging Australian talent to consumers and industry in Sydney to working with local established and emerging labels to present their collections as part of New York Fashion Week."

(Photo : Courtesy/Fashion Palette)

4. What's your take on the concept of see now, buy now and consumer-facing runway shows?

"This was very much the concept Fashion Palette started in Sydney. Designers like to make instant sales, and the exposure to consumers is what appeals to many labels. The Sydney platform is made up of part consumer, part industry, and I believe it has been the success behind many labels who have showcased with Fashion Palette."

(Photo : Courtesy/Fashion Palette)

5. How do you make Fashion Palette stand out in the crowded NYFW schedule?

"We are listed under the Australian Women's Wear Collection show on the CFDA calendar, and the Australian element is what I feel has allowed Fashion Palette to stand out on the NYFW Schedule. We work with the venue and the CFDA to ensure our time slots don't clash with any big-brand labels first and foremost, and secondly, we make a huge point of [emphasizing] the Australian factor, which allows buyers/media to view a collection of Australian labels in one sitting. This is our biggest point of difference, and so we continue to highlight this."

(Photo : Courtesy/Fashion Palette)

6. How does Australian style differ from New York style?

"Australians are known to be very laid back. We have a huge beach/surf culture, and therefore I find that the Australian style is very casual in comparison with New York, which tends to be more fashion forward. New York has a larger array of international fashion, where Australian fashion is a little more limited with the options on offer."

(Photo : Courtesy/Fashion Palette)

7. What's been your favorite Fashion Palette moment so far?

"Launching Fashion Palette in New York has been my favorite moment to date. To see all my hard work, time, dedication and persistence come to life has been so rewarding and fulfilling. It was a challenge which I was able to see from idea to execution — an experience which truly made me believe in myself and my skills more so than ever."

(Photo : Courtesy/Fashion Palette)

8. What's in store for the future of Fashion Palette? Any exciting news you can share?

"We are looking to launch a platform as part of New York Bridal Fashion Week in 2017 and furthermore, I am very interested in working with Middle Eastern designers, and so I am looking at launching a similar platform as the Australian showcase as part of NYFW in 2017 also."

FOLLOW: Fashion Palette, New York Fashion Week, Australia

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