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Town Hall Runway 5 merged contemporary and vintage fashion in the best way

Images by Lucas Dawson Photography
Words by Maeve Kerr-Crowley

Runway 5 was a win for me, due largely to the fact that so many of the looks made me smile.

Featuring a number of multi-brand retailers, the runway promised a wide variety of pieces and definitely delivered.

Against the backdrop of pulsing graphics reminiscent of the Matrix, designers sent down a delightful and surprisingly cohesive combo of contemporary and vintage garments.

MASONS opened the show with what I personally think might be the epitome of effortlessly cool streetwear. As well as some unconventional layering – I’m talking knitted jumper under Hawaiian shirt level layering – there were plenty of offbeat references and an overarching badass anime vibe.

Shifting Worlds did a 180-degree backflip into some summertime exploration-ready looks. Neutral shades paired with big hats, scarves and sunnies were trailed by beautifully pleated looks thanks to some iconic Pleats Please by Issey Miyake pieces.

LEFT presented arguably the most *Melbourne* offering of the night, centred largely around a black-on-black colour palette. Sprinkled with some COMMES DES GARÇONS designs, the brand presented plenty of stripes, high waistlines, beanies and a crisp white shirt or two.

Zadig & Voltaire’s presentation was a fantasy mish-mash for the cowboy slash rockstar slash spy, and it worked. It turns out a take on the classic trench can, should and must share the stage with a red leopard print two-piece suit. Who knew?

Maje brought the glitz with a host of black and silver, enthusiastically embellished designs. Throw in some pops of hot-hot-hot pink and give your audience permission to wear a puffer jacket in the spring, and you’ve got the gist of this collection.

Sandro Paris swapped hot pink out for teal, and surrounded it by deep, burnished gold suits, mum jeans, and an incredibly fun cowboy boot printed textile – side note, can cowboy-mania stay forever, please?

Claudie Pierlot took a classy approach with tailored suiting and classic, plaid-heavy prints in a palette of navy and olive green. Also, good news if you’re anti-pants: CP would like you to know that short suits are definitely a thing right now.

Reina Melbourne plucked some wonderful pieces from decades past, refusing to shy away from trends we’ve shamefully put to bed. My personal favourite look involved low-waisted pants that would have made Paris Hilton proud, but zebra print mesh and the pairing of a leather jacket and bikini top were also major contenders.

There’s something joyful about pairing tiny, tiny shorts with giant bows and strange necklines, and Madam Virtue & Co.’s collection did so with a lot of grace. All the vintage looks were pretty special, but it’s hard to look past the glitzy black co-ord styled with a huge Chanel hoop bag.

Slow Waves is just plain cheeky, and its runway presentation made me and everyone around me grin uncontrollably. A beautiful purple dress from Molly Goddard and details like a shiny double shirt collar were great forerunners to the best thing I saw all night: a plush, doona-esque coat complete with a swinging wine bottle holder.

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