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The ICONIC unveils exclusive Indigenous collection following success of First Nation Fashion Design Incubator Program

Phoebe Blogg -

Australia and New Zealand leading fashion and lifestyle platform, THE ICONIC, in partnership with First Nations Fashion + Design (FNFD), has celebrated the launch of a new collection this week.

The collection sees three First Nations brands, previously involved in the THE ICONIC X FNFD incubator program, exclusively launch their designs onto THE ICONIC website.

Stemming from THE ICONIC x FNFD Incubator Program - which was created to help foster Indigenous talent in the fashion industry - this collection with The ICONIC features the same First Nations designers who were previously involved in THE ICONIC X FNFD 2023 incubator program.

Designers featured in this project and whose collections are now exclusively available on THE ICONIC include Gungganji designer Elverina Johnson, the creative force behind the label Pink Fish, Mt. Isa designers Glenda McCulloch, Jaunita Doyle, Dale Bruce, and Cheryl Perez of the label Myrrdah and Kuranda-based designer Briana Enoch of label Jarawee.

Over the course of the nine-month program, participating designers took part in a series of four chapters, engaging in workshops, tours, and experiences guided by cultural peers and curated by industry experts and educators.

The program curriculum covered key aspects such as brand development, merchandising and marketing. Learning about these significant business aspects strived to provide the designers with the tools to effectively commercialise their brands.

Grace Lillian Lee, FNFD's founder and chair praised the collaboration between First Nations Fashion + Design and THE ICONIC.

"The partnership has given the designers a new platform to showcase their incredible work and FNFD is thrilled to see the collections launched on THE ICONIC," she said.

"It is through these initiatives that we can continue to support the self-determination of First Nations Peoples within the industry, and assist them in further developing skills to grow their businesses."

Behind the scenes at THE ICONIC X FNFD photoshoot. (Image: supplied)

Whilst each designer involved in the incubator program and featured in the exclusive collection launch is heavily inspired by country, cultural background and their mob, all designers bring something different to the table that is entirely unique to both their brand and THE ICONIC.

The distinct differences between each designer can be seen in their inspiration, creativity and garment design.

Briana Enoch, the owner and creative of Jarawee, ignites the imagination with her bold prints and vibrant colours showcased in her designs.

Elverina Johnson of Pink Fish encapsulates a spirit of boldness, vivid colours, and draws inspiration from the reef, rainforest, and her upbringing in Far North Queensland.

Myrrdah, the brainchild of four sisters—Glenda, Jaunita, Dale, and Cheryl—features incredible designs inspired by the sunsets, rock faces, clay, and landscape that surrounds their Kalkadoon home in Northwest Queensland.

THE ICONIC's Chief Commercial and Sustainability Officer, Gayle Burchell, said it has been a privilege to co-design THE ICONIC x FNFD Incubator program in partnership with FNFD.

"... we are so excited to welcome Pink Fish, Myrrdah and Jarawee to THE ICONIC following the success of the partnership," she said.

"Over the course of the program we have witnessed incredible talent, drive and dedication from these gifted designers and we're proud to help bring a selection of their pieces to our customers across Australia and New Zealand.

"We extend our gratitude to all participants, mentors and partners who have contributed to the success of this industry-first initiative.

"It is extremely important to us at THE ICONIC to share our business learnings and expertise on e-commerce, tech and retail with growing businesses and throughout the program we had the opportunity to learn from the designers - through their craftsmanship, experience growing a business in regional areas of Australia and delving into First Nations cultures and the inspirations behind their designs."

A model pictured wearing Myrrdah. (Image: Supplied)

As one of Australia and New Zealand's leading fashion and lifestyle platforms and most downloaded fashion app (in Australia and New Zealand), THE ICONIC's choice to join forces with FNFD and shine a spotlight on the creative talents of First Nations designers is a reflection of the fashion industry's slow yet significant shift towards greater representation and acknowledgement of Indigenous talent.

It is large-scale collaborations and development programs like this that drive change within the industry, and encourage more brands and retail conglomerates to follow suit.

Australia is home to the world's top Indigenous creatives, so it's time we hear, see and shop more of them.

Selected designs from Myrrdah, Pink Fish and Jarawee are now available to purchase on THE ICONIC.

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