The Insiders Guide to Mercedes Benz Fashion Week

The Insiders Guide to Mercedes Benz Fashion Week

The Insiders Guide to Mercedes Benz Fashion Week

Mercedes Benz Fashion Week (MBFW) is over for another year, but its legacy (scars from the blisters and credit card debt) live on.


For those of us that couldn’t make it to a runway show, or are simply curious as to what goes on after the make-up’s removed, we’ve pulled aside one of the week’s top models, the stunning Chloe Coles to give us the 411.

A huge part of MBFW is the models. Tell us about the casting process?

Fashion week castings mean blisters for the models before the shows even begin! The process seems easy to the outsider, but it’s usually really long and strenuous. You get to the castings early thinking that you’re going to be the first one there, but there are already 30 other girls ready and waiting and few steps ahead of you. Castings can take five minutes or longer, if you have to try on garments and have your portfolio examined. As a model, you’re running from one end of the city to the other trying to get to castings on time, and I’m not too sure how the other girls do it because I seem to be the only one rocking up with sweat dripping down my face and practically dying of heat exhaustion!

What do the designers look for in a model?

It’s hard to say what designers want, because it’s always different. Some look for girls that are long and sharp, while others might look for girls that are more womanly with big smiles. Sometimes you’re too skinny, and sometimes you’re too big. You never take it personally because if you do, you’d be the wrong look no matter what you did.

What was your MBFW prep like? Juice cleanses, Pilates, Botox?

In the weeks leading up to fashion week, I wish I could say I changed my diet and picked up on my exercise routine, but I can’t lie to you. I bought the best burger from Chur burgers in Surry Hills before my show and the waiter gave us complimentary Satay chicken wraps as well. I definitely recommend that place if love a good burger (like I do!).

On a healthier note, the models did get yoga passes to Flow Athletic for the month before the shows, so I was doing that pretty often!

What was your routine the morning of a show?

On days when I walked, I ate a good hearty breakfast in the morning because you don’t get time to eat during the shows. You’re always having people pulling at you so you don’t really get the chance to put anything in your mouth. We got two gluten-free chocolate balls in our MBFW survival packs that a PR Agency put together, which were so good, so I snacked on them, but there should have been more of them…

What was the atmosphere like backstage before a show?

Backstage is like a war zone. You have people tugging at your face hair and nails from left right and centre and you spend your time running around with garments flying everywhere! It can be a little bit frightening for a new comer like me. At one stage I was squished in a corner with four people pulling at my hair, one person moisturising my legs and then a small woman appeared from under the makeup dresser and started painting my nails, I don’t even know how she got under there…

What were the biggest show-stoppers this year?

Alice McCall and Dyspnea were my favourite two shows – they’re also opposite ends of the style spectrum!

The pieces at Alice McCall were all so effortlessly wearable, stunning and flawless; whereas at the Dyspnea show, the garments were more artistic, contemporary and daring.

There was a pink mesh dress with fluffy balls hanging off it from the Dyspnea show that I absolutely loved and I’d go as far as saying it was my favourite item out of the entire fashion week. I’m so jealous of the girl who got to wear it!

What was your typical after-hours model uniform look like?

My MBFW after-hours uniform was anything colourful and from Vinnies. I find the coolest clothes there and meet the strangest people, it’s so much fun (or maybe I’m just easily amused)!

The other week, I met this old Arabic man in there and he couldn’t speak a word of English, but he talked to me for about half an hour while I walked around. We just laughed together the whole time, but I had absolutely no idea what he was saying.

Who had the best tunes of MBFW 2014?

The best runway tunes came from the Bec & Bridge show; they had this cool little funky beat going on! I was ready to get up and start crumping down the catwalk, but I thought it might be inappropriate.


Chloe Coles was one of the models participating in MBFW 2014. Represented by Viviens Models, Chloe’s portfolio is available from



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