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:: Spotlight :: 2009 L'Oreal Melbourne Fashion Festival

By: Carmine Pascuzzi

The L'Oréal Melbourne Fashion Festival (LMFF) is regarded globally as one of the leading and exceptional consumer fashion events. In 2009 the Festival will exceed these expectations with an inspirational line up of guests and innovative platforms to support the Australian fashion industry. The LMFF will be held from March 15-22, 2009.

The 2009 L‘Oréal Melbourne Fashion Festival Business Seminar becomes the 'Inspiration Seminar’ bringing together leading global experts to share their experience and knowledge at Australia’s most anticipated industry networking forum. As the retail world struggles, LMFF recognises the need to provide inspiration to the fashion industry. To deliver this, the Festival has secured international industry icon Margareta van den Bosch, Creative Advisor for H & M Worldwide.

Margareta will tackle a range of vital issues to inform and inspire attendees. Attracting her to Australia is a major coup by the Festival; Margareta has never been to Australia and is excited to share her expertise with business and the creative industries. Festival Director Karen Webster commented, ‘This is an amazing triumph for the L'Oréal Melbourne Fashion Festival and reflects our significance on the international arena. We are honoured to bring Margareta to Australia and introduce her to the distinctive style of our country.’

Margareta van den Bosch has been described as a design guru. She will present the H & M creative story at the 2009 Business Seminar from early days of driving youth orientated trends to key strategies such as signing big-name designers. Recently Rei Kawakubo from Comme de Garçons has been added to the list of notable H & M collaborators: Karl Lagerfeld, Stella McCartney, Roberto Cavalli, Viktor & Rolf and Madonna to create collections for the brand. H & M is a global phenomenon and Margareta is tantamount to its success.

The Festival’s newest initiative: the L'Oréal Melbourne Fashion Festival Designer Forum will mark a new phase in supporting the growth of the Australian fashion industry. The LMFF Designer Forum will offer insights into how Australian designers can gain international success. Global experts of fashion retail and media will address the key steps to establishing a label within a competitive global environment and the opportunities and pitfalls of international expansion.

Another exciting addition to the LMFF programme is the L'Oréal Melbourne Fashion Festival Student Showcase. This catwalk show will provide leading fashion design students and recent graduates with a platform to present their collections. This showcase is a key forum for supporting the next generation of fashion brilliance and maintains LMFF’S position as a champion and supporter of Australian design talent.

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**J.Alexander announced as international VIP guest**

The L’Oréal Melbourne Fashion Festival is delighted to announce that global fashion icon, model, television personality and runway coach J. Alexander (pictured right) will be coming to Melbourne as a special guest VIP of the Festival.

Known for his role as runway coach and judge on America’s Next Top Model (Network Ten and Foxtel), Alexander began his career gracing the runway for Jean Paul Gaultier in New York City. After a modelling stint in Tokyo, he eventually decided to settle in Paris and since 1991, is a preferred contact for casting and coaching runway models for well-known designers, including Valentino, Galliano, Bill Blass, Alexander McQueen, Chanel and Nina Ricci.

His compassion for models early in their careers and ability to easily improve their elegance and movement on the runway, combined with his outlandish sense of style, has put him in high demand in the world of fashion. Alexander's studio is a frequent stop for television, newspaper and magazine journalists looking to capture his unique talent and secrets of runway success. In his spare time, he enjoys travelling the world for modelling competitions and charity events.

Commenting on his first visit to Melbourne, Alexander said, ‘I am excited about this opportunity to experience the glamour and excitement of the L’Oréal Melbourne Fashion Festival. It promises to be the perfect introduction into the Australian fashion industry.”

LMFF Director Karen Webster said, “We are thrilled that J. Alexander has accepted LMFF’s invitation to come to Melbourne and that LMFF is responsible for bringing him out. This is yet another testament to the global relevance of our event. His undeniable style and personality is truly iconic and we look forward to showing him the best in Australian fashion.”

Alexander will attend several events during LMFF.

The 2009 L'Oréal Melbourne Fashion Festival will be held March 15-22, 2009

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For more information, visit

www.lmff.com.au