Tallulah Morton by Thom Kerr for Jaime Lee Major

The beaded lady

As 2013 rapidly draws to a close, one more post from one of our favourite photographers Thom Kerr and one of our fave PR agencies, Mother & Father PR.

Many thanks to Thom and also Candice Wyman and Matt Jordan – who are the ‘mother’ and ‘father’ behind Mother & Father PR – for so many great first looks this year. We really appreciate it.

From previews of Bless’ed Are the Meek, Katerina Nis and Zhivago lookbooks to a first run on the Ruby Jean Wilson cover and Charlee Fraser/Rui Dalton editorial for Black magazine and Phoenix Keating’s latest campaign starring Amy Finlayson.

Today it’s Jaime Lee Major’s turn – a preview of Major’s latest campaign for her ‘Light Magic’ collection, which is inspired by the Gothic and Gothic Revival cathedrals of Europe, notably Notre Dame in Paris.

Shot by Kerr and starring Tallulah Morton, a few behind the scenes shots have run elsewhere but this is a first look at the finished campaign.

While many Australian designer brands are currently struggling to survive in the increasingly crowded Australian fashion retail market, Major is positioned at the very top end of the market, an arena that should in theory be immune to pricing sensitivities.

Ksubi and also apparently Jasu.com are the latest casualties to emerge this week. Although a representative for Jasu.com was unreachable for comment at press time, the website is down. According to one source we spoke to earlier this week, the company is experiencing difficulties, leaving a number of suppliers owed funds.

Major’s spectacular cocktailwear and evening gowns can require up to 700 hours of hand work, with prices reaching AUD 24,000. The latter is of course peanuts for those working at the very top end of the couture business. Case in point London-based Australian duo Tamara Ross and Michael Russo, aka Ralph & Russo, who in January will become the first Australians to to show on the official Paris haute couture schedule. Ralph & Russo gowns have been known to reach half a million dollars.

Most of Major’s business in Australia and the Middle East is private order. However Perth’s Elle boutique is currently selling a handful of off-the-rack Jaime Lee Major designs in a variety of sizes, including an embellished black lace fishtail gown which retails for AUD 6,336.

http://youtu.be/Bpp8pEdgMCk

This has been something of a banner year for the Perth-born, but now Bali-based couturiere, who dressed New Zealand songstress Kimbra for the Grammy Awards in February.
Kimbra and Wally “Gotye” de Backer won two Grammys for their runaway 2012 hit Somebody That I Used to Know: Record Of The Year and Best Pop Duo/Group Performance. Gotye picked up a third Grammy for Best Alternative Album for Making Mirrors.

Major’s sirenesque gown of aquamarine silk tulle, embellished with 2 kilos of freshwater WA pearls made it to the stage twice, in front of a viewing audience of 40 million. That’s not counting innumerable mentions in the red carpet coverage by the global media – including Fashion Police co-host Joan Rivers, who dubbed it a ‘Jaime Lee Major mistake’, which only added to the PR mega haul.

In September, Major showed 22 looks during the Perth Fashion festival, transforming Hacket Hall at the WA Museum into a floral fantasy of roses, cherry blossoms, peonies, wisteria, Geraldton Wax, maidenhair ferns and orchids.

Some other gowns also made it onto last month’s finale of Cycle 20 of America’s Next Top Model.

Earlier in the year, Major had attempted to crowdfund a debut runway show at the Paris haute couture collections. Just to clarify, not as an invited guest on the official Chambre Syndicale schedule, but one of a number of off-schedule shows that take place in Paris at the same time.

After raising only a fraction of the hoped-for AUD 75,000, however, those Paris plans remain on the backburner for now.

But first to crack the Hollywood red carpet….

 

ALL IMAGES: SUPPLIED EXCLUSIVELY TO FROCKWRITER BY MOTHER & FATHER PR
PHOTOGRAPHY: THOM KERR AT INDEPENDENT ARTIST MANAGEMENT
MODEL: TALLULAH MORTON AT EMG MODELS
MAKEUP: CAROL MACKIE FOR MAC
HAIR: SHARLENE LEE AT CIRCLES OF SUBIACO
PRODUCTION: MARCIA BALL
FLORAL SET: REBECCA GRACE AT NATURAL ART FLOWERS
ASSISTANTS: BEN RICHES AND DHYAN VERCO
SHOT ON LOCATION AT PERTH’S CLAREMONT QUARTER

 

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 DESIGNERportrait