Filled with ups and downs year after year, the past decade has indeed seen many milestones for KLFW. Celebrating its year of showcasing local and international fashion and accessory designers, the event still plays a major role for those who are in the fashion and entertainment industry as it acts as a platform to unite industry players and catapult lesser-known brands into the limelight. At the same time, it is also an avenue for many talents to showcase their creativity (be it in terms of brands or individually) and build lasting connections and memories. While KLFW is undoubtedly still one of the leading events that many people look forward to seeing and being part of, there are also some things that the organisers can look into to make the event better in the coming years. Here’s a recap of some of the things that went down at this year’s five-day event.

1. Alicia Amin fought for models’ rights

This isn’t the first time that we’ve heard of the rumour that models at KLFW aren’t paid on time. After years of brushing this issue under the carpet, Alicia stepped out of her comfort zone and stood up for her fellow models. Despite doing it alone and receiving backlash from certain groups on social media, Alicia didn’t let the episode bother her and continued her job as a professional model, walking the runway for a number of brands. Major respect for this woman who is firm on her stand and willing to go all out to make a change in the fashion industry.

2. Daiyan Trisha showed everyone what it means to be a real hustler

Three cities in three weeks – from KL to New York City, London and back to KL just in time to grace the weekend shows at KLFW – that’s Daiyan Trisha for you! We’re very curious as to how this fashion gatekeeper managed to do it all – and still make a fresh appearance for Alia Bastamam’s show on Saturday evening. Having revealed that she had the option of hiring a stylist or styling herself, Daiyan picked the latter where she paired a stunning pleated dress with a circular clutch, which completely stole the show. However, it didn’t end there as the fashion chameleon had to change into four different outfits for different shows the following day – including walking the runway for one. Way to go, Daiyan!

3. Rizman Ruzaini’s show got everyone putting their party hats on

Ever since we entered the endemic phase, many of us have been extremely caught up with our busy lives that a party is probably the last thing on our minds. But Rizman Ruzaini’s ‘Red’ showcase got everyone in the mood to put on our best outfits, glam ourselves up and celebrate life as it is! Featuring pink, black and shimmering dresses, pantsuits and tops that were adorned with diamantes, fringes and elaborate finishing and worn by some of Malaysia’s legendary models and today’s It girls, the collection brought out the Marilyn Monroe in all of us that was kept away from the limelight for the past two and a half years.

4. Nazreem Musa had the honour of revealing Alia Bastamam’s first set of menswear

The key message that Alia Bastamam revealed through her collection of outfits from both labels – Alia Bastamam and Alia B – was to find oneself and be proud of who you are. We’ve been eagerly waiting to see a change in the fashion industry for a long time and this year, Alia made it happen. Showcasing her first set of menswear in the brand’s signature pleats, Alia chose an androgynous model, Nazreem to wear the set, which not only revealed the brand’s openness to create outfits for everyone, but to also break the gender stereotype in today’s society.

5. Aina Abdul showed up in the puffiest black dress anyone’s ever seen

Another aspect of KLFW that we look forward to the most is seeing how fashion enthusiasts show up to the event dressed in their most creative or out-of-this-world outfits. Whether it’s using a styling hack or in the form of the outfit itself, Aina took the cake this year. The singer-songwriter showed up to Behati’s show on Sunday afternoon dressed in a black puffy dress from the brand itself – which you can definitely also call a pillow dress, if you prefer to. It had everyone paving the way for her as she walked through Pavilion KL and made many heads turn and jaws drop throughout the entire event!

6. Datuk Seri Vida made her runway debut

Known for her extroverted personality and her unique (or should we say clownish?) sense of fashion, Datuk Seri Vida isn’t a stranger to many of us. What shocked us more this year was her willingness to do the catwalk at KLFW! Dressed in a rainbow-coloured, multi-pieced gown that resembled her colourful personality to a T, Vida didn’t hesitate to complete the task that was given her and proved to everyone that fashion is indeed in the eyes of the beholder.  

7. The Dolla girls made an appearance at Neonate’s show

Malaysia’s It girl group, Dolla had all four members – Angel, Sabrina, Syasya and Tabby walking the runway for Neonate on Sunday. The collection, which was themed ‘Neostalgia’, featured streetwear pieces that were meant to be worn by real people. Rocking crocheted fabrics and retro-looking pieces that will be available from January 2023 onwards, the girls were the ideal models to feature the collection as they are well-known for their outgoing and funky personalities.

8. Syomirizwa Gupta celebrated its 20anniversary

Known as the ‘House of colours’ for two decades, the brand Syomirizwa Gupta has never failed to impress its fans with its eye-catching designs. This year, designer Syomir went all out and created a collection that was ideal for a summer vacay. The burst of popping colours and bold prints in his collection reflected the milestone that the brand has hit and the passion that the designer (still) has to continue creating pieces that will spark joy in people’s lives.

9. The audience was transported to the ‘Mimpikita Planet’ as KLFW came to an end

The metaverse has been one of the biggest highlights in the past few years. To keep up with this trend, local brand, Mimpikita transported its audience and fans to a different planet altogether through its latest collection, ‘Mimpikita Planet’. Filled with bold and neon hues, we loved how the pieces that were featured on the runway were filled with waves and sun elements which proved to not only be versatile but also bring out a deeper meaning of the transformation that we’re all going through in today’s world.

10. The fire incident that was immediately rectified

Last but not least, another issue that created headlines this year was the fire that started backstage at the event. Fortunately, no one was injured and the mall’s security staff was able to put the fire out quickly. Through this “little big” incident, we truly hope that in the coming years, the organising team of KLFW and the mall’s staff would pay closer attention to the details behind the scenes and take better precautions for the safety of everyone involved.

Featured image: @Daiyantrisha

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