A model presents a creation by Camilla during Australia Fashion Week in Sydney on Wednesday.

A model presents a creation by Camilla during Australia Fashion Week in Sydney on Wednesday. Photo: Reuters

Australian catwalks need more technicolour aliens, fluffy animals, odd shapes and sparkle to prosper.

In fashion, if it's weird, wacky and well made then chances are it's also wonderful, which is why Australian designers should continue to colour outside the lines originally drawn by their European and international counterparts.

This year has seen many promising designers light up the catwalk with interesting fabrics, unique cuts and a diverse range of inspiration. Pants with crotches so low they drag on the ground, jackets that look like they belong on a primates endangered-species list and glamorous gowns that show draping, folding and thigh splitting in equal measure were standouts at avant-garde shows such as Romance Was Born, Ellery, Camilla and the Raffles International showcase.

A model showcases designs by Gabriel Lee on the runway at the Raffles show during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia on Wednesday.

A model showcases designs by Gabriel Lee on the runway at the Raffles show during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia on Wednesday. Photo: Getty Images

The beauty of a Romance Was Born show is in its theatrics and that no one, generally, wears the loud looks every day. The candy-coloured smocks, feathered flares, rainbow-coloured tunics and sequin-encrusted petticoats of the Mushroom Magic collection may never have a red carpet debut and that's just how it should be.

Year in, year out at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia, Anna Plunkett and Luke Sales plant seeds of creativity within editors, buyers, stylists and fashion lovers alike. Celebrity endorsement and commercial viability are a welcome byproduct, not the end goal.

Like farmers who encourage city folk to reconnect with the land, the duo behind the label pay homage to the artistic roots of their craft.

A model showcases designs by XXX on the runway at the Camilla show during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia on Wednesday.

A model showcases designs by XXX on the runway at the Camilla show during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia on Wednesday. Photo: Getty Images

For those who sat in the bleachers on Monday night amid a Willy Wonka-meets-Alice In Wonderland set by Tanya Schultz, the artist behind PIP and POP, Romance Was Born filled a void that is sometimes lacking in everyday dressing with fantasy, whim and weirdness.

From Mushroom Magic, expect blouses, T-shirts and dresses boasting psychedelic pastels embellished with mushrooms and Disney cartoon applique and large pussy bows, which were so exaggerated they could be considered ''lions' bows'', to be in store for summer.

The production involved in the intricate detailing, tailoring and fabrics featured in a Romance Was Born show is a costly exercise, the summer 2014 collection was sponsored by Disney. Their most recent summer collection was courtesy of Marvel Comics.

A model showcases designs by Gabriel Lee on the runway at the Raffles show during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia on Wednesday.

A model showcases designs by Gabriel Lee on the runway at the Raffles show during Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia on Wednesday. Photo: Getty Images

With buyers from Net-A-Porter, SHOPBOP and Matches UK all on site at Carriageworks for the five-day event, not to mention editors from the soon-to-be launched Elle Australia and gentrified Australian glossies such as Vogue and Harper's Bazaar, the public can expect to be served some element of (magic) mushroom madness by the end of the year.

Kym Ellery's Renegade collection was a watershed moment. Comparisons to European looks - a market she is hoping to crack - have followed Ellery throughout her career but her sculptural and abstract looks presented new silhouettes ideas and options for the female body. For next summer capped sleeves and oversized motorcycle jackets will show off strong shoulders and arms. It takes a strong aesthetic to compete with luxuriously fitted out tepees, Mick Jagger's daughter, llamas and a campfire surrounded by an organic garden but Camilla Franks' Pachamama looks held their own.

The designers from the Raffles International College of Design and Commerce kicked off the next generation arm of fashion week on Wednesday before The Innovators and New Generation shows for locals later in the week.

Ayaka Ichikawa's leather-and-fleece-looking drape dress and a floor-length coat with Victorian detailing and structured shoulders by Aurelia Santoso drove home the fact that the dawn of a new age goth could be upon us.

Tech savvy trend watchers would be familiar with the phrase ''steampunk''. IBM predicts this Helena Bonham Carter-meets-luxury look will be the next big trend. Judging from the collections of the six Raffles graduates they have listened to the fashion forecast.