Dion Lee was this year’s official Mercedes-Benz designer, opening the greatest fashion event in Australia with his Resort 2018 Collection. The Australian started the fashion week with a spectacular show. This was Dion’s 4th show for the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week. He debuted in 2009 and showed his collections again in 2014 and 2016.
The 31-year old designer was the first in history to stage a runway presentation at the Sydney Opera House in 2010. As expected, he presented his Resort 2018 Collection outside on the patio of the Sydney Opera House. Dion visited the Sydney Opera House as a child for the first time and he has been fascinated by its beauty and spirit ever since.
Just recently, the CEO of the Sydney Opera House Louise Herron announced that Dion Lee is going to design the new uniforms for the Opera House’s 600 employees.
“Dion is one of Australia’s brightest fashion stars whose work draws so beautifully on the sculptural elegance of Utzon’s masterpiece,” Louise said. “It will be wonderful to work with him to create a new uniform collection for the people who bring the place to life.”
Dion confirmed the collaboration and added that the designing process is expected to take around 12 months.
For the Resort 2018 Collection, Dion wasn’t afraid to experiment. According to him, resort season is a fun time to play with, and judging by his versatile designs he certainly had fun.
For the first time in a while, we had a chance to see flip flops on the runway. These flip flops were thick-soled and trimmed by an elastic cable with an overall sporty vibe. Dion paired the flip flops with almost anything that you could imagine. Models were walking with thongs (the Australian word for flip flops) wearing everything from suits to skirts and dresses.
Models in mostly solid, monochromatic outfits paraded on the patio of the Sydney Opera House. Dion explained that he started with a primary palette and wanted to contrast the Opera House’s outdoor setting.
His latest collection represents the essentials for living under the hot Australian sun. Relaxed cuts, towels, and bathrobes transformed into a coat or a skirt dominated the runway.
Dresses, skirts, and coats were predominantly asymmetric and with uneven hemlines. Dion brought a variety of fabrics on the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week show. There were thick suitings transformed into double breasted suits and suit-like dresses, and soft silk fabrics turned into relaxed-fit dresses with silk streamers gently hugging the waist. The surprising factor was that Dion decided to pair formal suits with flip flops and elegant silk dresses with masculine ankle boots.
“Garments are engineered in a way that both enhances the silhouette and explores volume. The venue inspired a play on reflectivity and being a resort show, many of the fabrics enable the flow of air and light,” says Dion.
For the first time in his career, Dion introduced menswear. According to him, the Australian gentlemen are allowed to wear a suit with flip flops. Double breasted monochromatic suits and suits with a light texture both with a formal feel were fiercely paired with sports thick sole flip flops. The unconventional combo looked surprisingly good.
Prints were predominantly missing in the entire collection as Dion focused on clean, one-color looks for both men and women. In terms of his men’s collection, Dion admitted that he is excited to finally wear his own designs.
In general, the entire collection had an authentic Australian feel with a lot of cultural identity from Dion’s hometown. The red color definitely dominated on the stage as we had a chance to see all-red outfits and red details. We also witnessed a lot of all-black and all-white outfits as well as outfits with a hint of blue and yellow. This time Dion didn’t play with a lot of prints and details, but he definitely played with the tailoring. Most of the contrast was achieved through the unconventional asymmetric cuts and the unexpected choice of footwear.
Photo by: Yannis Vlamos / Indigital.tv