Now considered one of the must-go parties on the summer social calendar (and quite simply just a hell of a lot of fun), the Australians in Fashion Foundation (aka AUSFF) held its unofficial family reunion last night at their seventh annual summer party at Jimmy at The James Hotel. The evening was hosted by Aussie designers Dion Lee, Camilla Freeman Topper and Marc Freeman of Camilla & Marc, Nicky Zimmermann of Zimmermann (who flew in from down under especially for the event), Ramon Martin and Ryan Lobo of TOME, AUSFF founders Malcolm Carfrae and Julie Anne Quay, and Michelle Lee, director of the Americas for The Woolmark Company. The foundation has a simple mission: promoting talented young Australians on a global scale by getting them international experience. Over the years, they’ve helped Aussies gain internships (and paid for their stipends!) with brands such as Thom Browne, Narciso Rodriquez, Calvin Klein, Louis Vuitton, and Giles Deacon, to name a few.
Sheilas and mates at last night’s fundraiser included Lincoln Pilcher, Sarah Wynter, Jillian Davison, Susan Joy, Madison Stubbington, Astrid Holler, Tyson Beckford, John Watticker, Cory Bond, Antony Todd, Justin O’Shea, Sanne Vloet, Patrick McGregor, Georgie Mosman, James Houston, Brian McGrory, Rose Swarbrick, Andrew Bowen, and Richard Christiansen. “It’s important for Australians to celebrate the success they’ve had overseas, especially in New York,” Melbourne native Shanina Shaik told us. “We’re so far away from Australia, so it’s always a good time to get together, rekindle, catch up, and celebrate.” Shaik kept it in the family and wore a sexy TOME number for the occasion.
The soirée also brought a little taste of home to guests with an authentic Aussie sausage sizzle served with gourmet sauce, plus lamingtons, an Australian desert. But no Aussie event is complete without a healthy supply of wine and boozy on hand with spicy cocktails, wine and champagne courtesy of Dom Pérignon and rosé from Ben Watts’ WattsUp Rosé line on the menu. “We couldn’t do the event without the kind sponsorship and collaboration of the Woolmark Company,” Carfrae and Quay told us. “No other company does as much to support young designers globally, and we’re indebted to them for supporting our cause again.” How do these two Aussie Godparents feel now that the event is dunzo for another year? “Tired, relieved, and very proud.” Well earned.