Australian brands prepare for New York Fashion Week assault
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Australian brands prepare for New York Fashion Week assault

If you tally up the combined Instagram followers of the front row at streetwear brand Nana Judy's show at New York Fashion Week on Thursday, US time, it's more than the total population of New South Wales.

Model Winnie Harlow walks for Australian brand Nana Judy at New York Fashion Week.

Model Winnie Harlow walks for Australian brand Nana Judy at New York Fashion Week.

Photo: Melissa Singer

In fact, even a handful of them, including former US Bachelor contestant Corrine Olympios (816,000) and Golden Barbie AKA Jasmine Sanders (3.1 million), account for Western Australia, and then some.

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So it's little wonder more Australians are choosing to show at the first stop on "fashion month", the seasonal runway fest that also includes London, Paris and Milan.

Glenn Coleman, co-founder of Nana Judy, said since the Melbourne-based brand launched at Fashion Week Australia 11 years ago in Sydney, "it's been non-stop demand to expand and a natural next step for us to show in the United States".

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"We are from Australia but we have a global vision as that's what it's all about," he said after the show, which was called "Alive".

A model backstage with Richard the dalmatian at the Nana Judy show in New York.

A model backstage with Richard the dalmatian at the Nana Judy show in New York.

Photo: David Higgs

The show featured top model Winnie Harlow but it was Richard, a dalmatian, that arguably stole the show. The dog featured to helped promote Nana Judy's collaboration with Disney on a 101 Dalmatians collection.

Also showing on the first full day of fashion week were Australian expats Discount Universe, which has a cult celebrity following including Katy Perry and Miley Cyrus. The pair behind the brash, sequinned and sometimes offensive brand, Cami James and Nadia Napreychikov​, relocated to the US in early 2016 to be closer to their main fan base.

It's been a Australian-twanged start to the week-long frock fest, with comedian Celeste Barber emerging as one of the biggest stars of Tom Ford's opening-night show on Wednesday.

Barber, who lampoons fashon campaigns with her own, more realistic interpretations, attracted Ford's attention, and admiration, when she pilloried one of his advertisements.

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The pair connected, as they say in the industry, and on Wednesday, right before the designer's show filmed a segment of them French kissing that was blasted on social media and at the show's afterparty.

"We loved having Celeste there and it gave it an Australian touch," a source close to the brand said on Thursday.

But just like a good summer barbie, the Australians are just starting to get warmed up. On Saturday, the big guns commence with Dion Lee holding his presentation, while Zimmermann, arguably Australia's biggest success story of late, is showing on Monday.

On Monday night, luxe athleisure brand P.E. Nation will hold an event to celebrate their partnership with Woolmark, the Australian wool indsutry body, ahead of the international launch of their debut ski range.

Rounding off the Australians, Camilla and Marc will hold a presentation of their collection on Wednesday.

Follow more of Melissa Singer's NYFW coverage on Instagram @melly_singer.