LEADING Australian designer Bianca Spender will launch her first resort collection to a WA audience at the Telstra Perth Fashion Festival’s opening night – the biggest runway show in the festival’s history.

The show is a significant milestone for the Sydney-based designer, whose mother, iconic Australian designer Carla Zampatti, made her own forays into the fashion world in Perth in the early 1960s, before moving to Sydney and building a fashion empire spanning 51 years.

Spender’s spring/summer resort collection will be revealed alongside four other Australian designers – Dion Lee, Romance Was Born, Zhivago and Flannel – at Fashion Paramount, a massive marquee at the Concert Hall on September 20.

Spender said Perth was the perfect setting for the unveiling of her first resort collection, which was inspired by the WA lifestyle and ideas of utility and frivolity.

“I was really putting myself in the headspace of a hot Australian summer,” she said. “We Australians have a unique way that we dress and adapt and an ease to everything. I wanted to find the sophistication and twist and edge in that story.”

Fresh from their showcase at Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week Australia, WA label Zhivago’s founders Lara Kovacevich and Lydia Tsvetnenko, will also make their opening night runway debut at the festival, alongside local designer Kristy Lawrence’s label Flannel.

Telstra Perth Fashion Festival director Mariella Harvey-Hanrahan said the strong line-up of local labels and iconic Australian designers was testament to the festival’s reputation as Perth’s premier fashion event.

“Our Australian design talent keeps going from strength to strength,” Harvey-Hanrahan said. “It’s our 18th opening night and we’re featuring five of Australia’s most exciting designers. This show will be edgy, dramatic, daring and sophisticated all at once and make a strong statement about the power and energy of collaboration.”

AMP Capital, which manages Garden City and Karrinyup shopping centres, is presenting partner for opening night of the 2016 festival. Managing director Bryan Hynes said the company was committed to nurturing and advocating emerging and established designers while playing a role in shaping the future of WA fashion.Read more at:evening dresses | bridesmaid dresses