In a groundbreaking move towards fostering Indigenous talent in the fashion industry, Australia and New Zealand’s leading fashion and lifestyle platform, THE ICONIC, has joined forces with First Nations Fashion + Design (FNFD) to launch an exclusive collection featuring three First Nations brands. Stemming from the success of the THE ICONIC x FNFD Incubator Program, this initiative not only showcases the unique designs of Indigenous creators but also highlights the commitment to supporting their growth within the fashion landscape. Celebrating Indigenous Talent: THE ICONIC Launches Exclusive First Nations Collection in Collaboration with FNFD
The ICONIC x FNFD Incubator Program: The recently launched collection is a result of THE ICONIC x FNFD Incubator Program, a nine-month initiative designed to nurture and empower Indigenous designers. The program provided a platform for participants to engage in workshops, tours, and experiences guided by cultural peers and industry experts. Covering crucial aspects such as brand development, merchandising, and marketing, the program aimed to equip designers with the necessary tools to effectively commercialize their brands.
The Featured Designers: The collection exclusively features designs from the talented Indigenous designers who participated in the 2023 incubator program. Elverina Johnson of Gungganji’s Pink Fish, Glenda McCulloch, Jaunita Doyle, Dale Bruce, and Cheryl Perez of Mt. Isa’s Myrrdah, and Kuranda-based Briana Enoch of Jarawee are among the celebrated designers. Each designer brings a unique perspective inspired by their country, cultural background, and experiences, creating a diverse and vibrant collection.
Individual Creativity and Inspiration: The distinct differences in inspiration, creativity, and garment design shine through in each designer’s work. Briana Enoch’s Jarawee impresses with bold prints and vibrant colors, while Elverina Johnson of Pink Fish draws inspiration from the reef, rainforest, and her upbringing in Far North Queensland. Myrrdah, a collective effort by four sisters from Northwest Queensland, finds inspiration in the sunsets, rock faces, clay, and landscapes surrounding their Kalkadoon home.
The ICONIC’s Perspective: THE ICONIC’s Chief Commercial and Sustainability Officer, Gayle Burchell, expressed the platform’s pride in welcoming Pink Fish, Myrrdah, and Jarawee following the program’s success. Burchell emphasized the importance of sharing business learnings and expertise on e-commerce, tech, and retail with growing businesses, acknowledging the invaluable contributions of all participants, mentors, and partners.
Impact on the Fashion Industry: As Australia and New Zealand’s most downloaded fashion app, THE ICONIC’s collaboration with FNFD signifies a significant shift in the fashion industry towards greater representation and acknowledgment of Indigenous talent. Large-scale collaborations and development programs like this pave the way for other brands and retail conglomerates to follow suit, promoting inclusivity and diversity within the fashion landscape.
The launch of the exclusive First Nations collection on THE ICONIC is a celebration of Indigenous creativity, craftsmanship, and cultural richness. This collaboration not only provides a platform for talented designers but also serves as a catalyst for positive change within the fashion industry. As consumers, it is an opportunity to support and appreciate the diverse and unique perspectives brought to the forefront by Australia’s top Indigenous creatives. The selected designs from Myrrdah, Pink Fish, and Jarawee are now available for purchase, inviting fashion enthusiasts to embrace and celebrate Indigenous talent.
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