Aussie Gen-Y fashion designers rock the Whitehouse

MEDIA RELEASE:13 October 2012 [pdf]

AATFA 2012 Photos apex_logoAATFA 2012 Photos AATFA AUSTRALIA_logo-1

The next generation of fashion designers showcased their creations at the Apex Australia Teenage Fashion Awards (AATFA) National final held recently at the Melbourne campus of The Whitehouse Institute of Design.  Students aged between 13 and 19, from all over Australia, have been competing at regional and State events over the past six months – all dreaming of securing a ticket to the National finals and the chance to win a prize package that will help their fashion dreams become a reality . Melbourne, Saturday 6th October was the culmination of their many, many hours spent sketching, sewing, hand stitching, gluing, feathering and nurturing an idea that grew from a mere spark into a three dimensional reality.

Backstage was a tizz of hairspray and make-up, models and designers perfecting their garments before blitzing the runway with an extravagant collection of imagination, creativity, colour and style.   Out front, judges and audience were waiting impatiently to be the first admirers of a kaleidoscope of creations brought about by sheer raw talent of Australia’s youth.  Soon enough a parade of formal gowns destined for red carpet soirees, standout casual wear, head turning wearable art and the youthful opinions on society and environment would be swishing and swaying down the runway making their own statement on fashion and society.

Australian international bridal wear designer, Henry Roth, judging the awards beaming direct from the Whitehouse Institute to his agency in Manhattan, New York was so inspired by what he saw he penned these words to the student entrants: “…I was privileged to participate in “judging” your exceptional efforts …  I saw strong statements for the fashion be relevant and on topic with the category you were competing in. Believe me, I understand and so did everyone else that hard work, persistence and being strong and voicing your sense of style in every stitch. Overall I saw consistency, confidence and pride in your own voice. I saw a true willingness to take style out of the box and display a unique and different attitude.”

Henry’s words ignite a storm of energy and encouragement for this group of exceptional young people and inspires them to continue brainstorming ideas, to continue commandeering the family table and lounge room floors to sketch, design, cut and create. The designs created by all AATFA entrants across Australia have not only the “ooh and ahh” factor, they invigorate and inspire with their artistry, ingenuity, courage and beauty.

AATFA 2012 Young Designer of the Year, Tess Tavener Hanks, beams with joy after impressing the judges with her creations. Tess, wearing her stunning aubergine evening gown which took 1st place in Formal Wear, also swept to victory with 1st place Wearable Art (garment 46) and Society & Environment (garment 22).
AATFA Co-ordinator, Jo-anna Egart, said that the mission of Apex’s AATFA competition was to: “Meet the goals of both the Apex and AATFA mottos which are to: “Grow, Learn, Make Friends, Have Fun whilst helping others”; through the provision of an outlet which allows us to see “Youth Potential Unleashed”. Primarily the goal is development through the AATFA experience, for Apexian’s and AATFA entrant’s alike.”
“As 2012 draws to a close 2013’s competition has already begun as this year’s entrants return home to their friends, pumped and inspired by the experience of being in the Apex Australia Teenage Fashion Awards – Australia’s very own nursery of fashion design, youth development and talent.”

Fast Facts

AATFA is an annual event open to students aged between 13-19 and produced by the Apex Club of Australia in collaboration with major sponsors: The Whitehouse Institute of Design, Fashion Matters Design Software, Aldona Kmiec Photography, the Butterfly Foundation and Henry Roth Australia.
High resolution images are available from
 Aldona Kmiec Photography.
e.  Contact Page
Media Liaison
Susan Jarvis
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Apex AATFA Spokesperson
Jo-anna Egart
t.   0450 562 662
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AATFA information