By Jessica Frost
If you feel like the fashion industry is just one big closed door concealing a whole lot of ‘insiders only’ secrets, you’re not alone. We hear ya sista! But lucky for you, we’ve gone behind the scenes at the Macgraw casting for MBFWA and caught up with founders, designers and sisters, Beth and Tessa to give you the sneak peek you need to satisfy your fashion cravings.
They let us in on how their castings work and what they look for in a model to find that quintessential ‘Macgraw Girl’.
For starters, the sisters spilled on what their upcoming collection is all about. They’ve channelled an aristocratic Brit ‘cool girl’ and have used velvet, rich tones and their one of a kind prints which Tess hand draws to get the vibe they’re after. (I know what you’re thinking, we can’t wait to get our hands on it either!)
As an already established, well-known Aussie brand with a distinct personality, Beth and Tessa shared that the modelling agencies have started to develop a feel for who the Macgraw girl is, meaning they can do a lot of the hard editing work for them. The agency knows who’s going to work for the show and who’s worth sending along to the casting.
For Macgraw, it’s more about the personality a model exudes. The girls tend to look for that ‘Macgraw Girl’ year after year, rather than matching girls to each collection (In other words, it pays to do a little research on the brand you’re casting for if you want to really nail it).
On who that ‘Macgraw Girl’ is, the sisters explain that above all, she has personality. She has an irreverence about her, she’s not super sweet but you’ll catch her smiling on the runway because she’s loving the whole experience. She’s confident, but relaxed, and doesn’t take herself too seriously. She the type of girl who isn’t afraid of the colour pink and will wear feminine lace but toughen it up with a boot.
The pair definitely have some favourite models they really love working with who feel they perfectly personify the brand, but they are always looking out for new girls to work with and not just on the runway. For them, castings are a great opportunity to be thinking about upcoming campaign shoots and look books.
As for the nitty gritty details of the day; it typically takes about three hours to get through all of the models depending on the girl’s schedules. They start off with a walk then Beth and Tessa have a quick chat with them to see if that ‘Macgraw Girl’ personality they’re looking for is there and finish with a polaroid.
Once they’ve seen all of the models, they layout the polaroids with the models comp cards and create a wish list. That’s where it gets a little political. The sisters filled us in on the negotiating that it takes to work out which models they can get for the show and how they have to keep in mind who else wants the model, when each show is scheduled and what that means for models running from show to show.
It’s hard to imagine though any model not doing everything she can to get the opportunity to walk for Macgraw. Beth and Tessa shared that they prioritise keeping their chosen models happy and calm yet excited to kick ass on the runway (and I bet the amazing clothes and the little thank you gift they give their models are enough to make any model dream of working with the sisters).
Images: Brooke James