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The Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival

Post four of a thirteen-part series exploring Ruth’s makeover from dorky writer to disco diva. republished with permission from

Relax! It wasn’t me on stage! This week, my girls were lucky enough to take part in a rather swanky bridal parade at VAMFF. Prior to the event, the girls (and I) stared wide-eyed as we wandered around the Royal Exhibition Building. So many people sipping champagne, dressed fashionably and creatively, wearing funky shoes, ‘with reeeealllly high heels, mum’. A whole new world.

Being the mum of the ‘talent’, (bless their cotton socks), I spent the night following important people around as they bustled the group of kids from fittings in the green room, to the stage for rehearsal, back to the green room, then backstage for headpieces, before they disappeared to await their turn on the catwalk. Finally, we parents were able to rest our weary feet, taking our places in the audience to check out the swag bags and watch the ah-maaaz-ing bridal show.

I’ve never been involved in an event like this, (if you can call chauffeuring the kids and taking them to the loo being ‘involved’?) The models were stunning, and, oh, so young. The dress and suit designs were just gorgeous. I quickly joined the ooh’ing and ahh’ing of the S.Pellegrino-sipping fashionistas, snapping photos and discussing the merits of each designer’s choices.

Miss 11 raring to go. (Photo by Lucas Dawson Photography)

Unexpectedly, my partner-in-crime for the evening was a fellow Born to Boogie dancer, Jen from Eclectic Boogaloo. She’s not in my class but our paths sometimes cross through kids and work, and she’s part of the reason I found the courage to attempt Born to Boogie. She’s done it before, (twice, I think), and I’ve heard her rave about how what a great experience it is. Chatting about our lessons and upcoming performance, I couldn’t help but wonder how the VAMFF models feel, night after night, appearing on stage. Do they still get nervous? What happens when they slip, or mistime something? They are a far cry from us amateur dancers, but I wonder if they are plagued with insecurities, just like we are?

The kids certainly didn’t show any insecurities. Aged from four to twelve, they all appeared to take the event in their stride, thoroughly enjoying themselves.

It was beautiful to witness. They were so totally natural; gorgeous outfits, no makeup, garlands of fresh flowers entwined with fairy lights crowning the girls’ free-flowing hair. Some kids held hands, others waved, they all smiled.
Little Miss 7 ready to strut her stuff. (Photo by Lucas Dawson Photography)

We have so much to learn from our kids. In eight weeks, I’ll be on stage. To be ‘ready’, I’ll have made appointments with my trusted hairdresser, lovely waxing lady and local nail salon. I’ll be begging for help with my makeup. I’ll be putting all sorts of things in place to help me find the courage to strut my stuff. It’s kind of silly really, when what we all need to do is take a leaf from the VAMFF kids and just get out there and enjoy ourselves.

There’s nothing more attractive than someone glowing purely from embracing life and having fun.

Food for thought.


Huge thanks and much appreciation to the lovely Jessica from J.Smith Productions and the Off The Street Hip Hop team for providing the opportunity to be involved in such an exciting experience.

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