For Bianca Spender, opening Australian Fashion Week Afterpay 2022 should be a lucrative privilege. It wasn’t long ago that many of us watched her mother, the late Carla Zampatti, showcase her spring 2020 collection on the same runway. So, for Spender to ship his Resort 2023 collection this morning at the same venue, it’s no surprise that there’s a bit of Australian fashion history in the air.
While Spender has successfully run his eponymous label for more than a decade, the last year has seen his name increasingly in the spotlight. Today’s show gave us a vision of the next step, bringing the Bianca Spender label into the more experimental world of sculpture. His preference for paddling silk in biased cuts in soft tones still varies but this time with an added edgenew era silhouette. Knots, twists and ruches (as well as springy, drop-waist tubing) prove that Spender enjoys an optimistic and fresh future.
“I think a lot about the disturbing notion of beauty, and what it’s like to push the boundaries of traditional beauty ideals. I wanted this collection to represent women’s liberation and use optimism, courage and courage to do so.” The shopper explained to GRAZIA. “The last two years have been turbulent for society and it has had an impact on this collection and me as a designer. While I was working on the collection, I watched a soul music documentary that talks about optimism through pain, and that’s what I wanted to convey – joy and total freedom!”
Flexibility through movement is a major theme, figuratively and literally, both through the collection’s silk fabrics and through a group of models/dancers performing modern dance installations. The idea of movement is refreshing and perfect for the Shopper. The pieces have long offered a subtle femininity, perfect for after five o’clock parties and always a favorite for the wedding season. However, this collection is more refined for the everyday wearable menu. Long striped vests, sporty zip-up jackets, and loose-fitting shirts served alongside a colorful slip dress and a two-piece mute. It seems the most coveted look is her masterful suit, especially the large black silk set which is curated and so beautifully crafted that you can’t help but be reminded that the fine sewing runs deep in her veins.
The show itself was fresh and vibrant, a beautiful resistance to the gloomy weather that La Niña brought to Sydney this morning. The long, large runway was impressive, but Spender filled the show with the warmth I expected from it. It’s also great to see fashion week get off to a mixed start, with a selection of models of all shapes, sizes, backgrounds and ages, and most importantly, outfits to suit each of them. This is a welcome change that we hope will continue throughout the week.