pageant and banoffee are teaming up for a special capsule collection

The results of this harmonious collaboration between the label and their number one fan girl will be revealed at Melbourne Fashion Festival’s Discovery Runway.

by Briony Wright
25 January 2016, 12:25am

L-R: Amanda Cumming, Banoffee & Kate Reynolds. Photography Ben Thomson

Kate Reynolds and Amanda Cumming—the designers behind Melbourne label Pageant—and musician Banoffee, aka Martha Brown, met over a shared appreciation of each other's work. Since the label was launched earlier in the decade, Martha has regularly worn Pageant during her performances and now they're making their mutual adoration official by collaborating on a collection to be released this March.

With the range in production phase, we sat down with Kate, Amanda and Martha in the Pageant studios to get the backstory and an idea of what we can expect when the fashionable figments of their collective imaginations come to life. 

i-D: This collaboration seems like a nice fit. When did the idea come about?
Amanda: About a year ago. We'd met because Banoffee had bought some of our pieces. We were so excited that she liked the label.
Banoffee: I was a Pageant fan girl.
Kate: I remember you loved the A/W14 snap pants so I gave them to you.
Banoffee: That's right. That was rad. I was trying to dress like Aaliyah for the night and wore them with your mesh skivvy. Around that time it was clear I wasn't going to leave you alone.

Pageant collections are typically a fair mix of very wearable and more extreme designs. What will be the hallmark of the Pageant X Banoffee collaboration?
Banoffee: Before we began designing we spoke a lot about the attitude that comes through in my music. I think it's tough and empowering and focuses on individuality - we wanted the range to reflect this same attitude.
Amanda: We wanted to make sure it reflected both our brands and we've really focused on fit, wearability and price point so it's accessible too.
Kate: It's daywear. The idea is that you can layer it and mix and match it with stuff you already have in your wardrobe.

Who do you see wearing it?
Kate: We had a lot of conversations about what would work. Most of the range is unisex.
Banoffee: It's pretty gender neutral. We're all quite gender neutral in our own dressing. A lot of my clothes are men's and I wear a lot of the menswear that Pageant made originally.
Kate: The whole collection is interchangeable and meant to be layered. It's really designed to fit both body types. We're relaunching Pageant menswear for S/S16 so this will be like our re-entry into it. 

Can you give away anything else about the collection?
Martha: Everything in the collection is based on things we love to wear or have otherwise struggled to find in shops over the years. There are details and surprises in the designs that I've always thought would be great in clothes but haven't been able to find. We'll really be able to play with that in the context of the runway too. 
Kate: Some of the pieces are also throwbacks to earlier collections we've done to. It's been nice to look back through our archives and get Banoffee's feedback. It's good to have an opportunity to go back and look at all the stuff we've done and notice how the energy of it is still relevant.

I'm anticipating Martha bringing a lot of colour.
Amanda: We've been experimenting with colours we've never used before and it's been fun to leave the comfort zone. 
Banoffee: I like the idea of a simple cut in a bright colour or a more complicated design in a more neutral colour so it's not pushing it on every level.

So it will be shown for the first time at the Discovery Runway at Melbourne Fashion Festival. Then where will it be available?
Kate: It'll be available through our web store on pre-order. Most of the fabric is being imported from Japan and everything's made in Australia so selling it online is a good way to be able to avoid a retail mark up.

Will this be the one and only collaboration between you guys?
Amanda: We'd love to do more but let's see how this one goes first. This one has taken us so long because last year was so crazy but it's worked out well because VAMFF is a really amazing platform to launch, so it's perfect.

The Discovery Runway and Party Presented by i-D at VAMFF. 
Thursday 10th March 8PM. 
The runway will also feature labels: ASSKPAICaves CollectSisterArticle by Courtney HolmAMXANDER and Lois Hazel
Tickets available here


Text Briony Wright
Photography Ben Thomson

Martha Brown
Melbourne Fashion Festival