Making Australia Look Good: Holly Kagis
The sum is greater than the individual parts; it’s a statement which is resoundingly true for so many things in life. Americans pride themselves on the conglomeration which has created a uniqueness from so many cultural influences. One of the modern visible examples of this is in the fashion world. Fashion Palette, run by Sonya Mefaddi and supported by the Australian Consulate General New York, showcases top Australian Fashion Designers at New York Fashion Week. Along with the amazing designs seen in 2018 Australian model Holly Kagis modeled many of the designs at the event. As a star in the industry and a fan of many Aussie designers, Kagis was more than pleased to be adorned by them at this premier event (NYFW is one of the “Big 4” fashion week events held each year). While she was a finalist in the Miss Universe Australia pageant, Holly has done more to bring attention to her homeland as a model than she might have ever dared to think possible. In the pages of magazines or on the runways of the world, Australia has never seemed more interesting than at the Fashion Palette event of New York Fashion Week.
Australia doesn’t get the respect it deserves when it comes to modeling or fashion. There’s an obvious symbiotic relationship between the two. The same country that gave us names like Elle Macphereson (five time Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue covergirl), Abbie Cornish (AACTA nominee for Best Supporting Actress-Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri), Margot Robbie (Oscar nominated actress for I, Tonya), Miranda Kerr (Victoria’s Secret angel) and others also gave the world Bec and Bridge, Ellery, Zimmermann, Gorman, and more, including Kagis. Fashion Palette has made it their mission to give exposure to this talent in Australia and across the world. Kagis walked in the very first Fashion Palette show in her home country of Australia back in 2009; both have been on a successful climb in the near decade since. The iconic fashion publication Harper’s Bazaar (recognized as a prominent voice since 1867) has written about Fashion Palette as one of the freshest and most triumphant events in recent times. Holly’s relationship with Fashion Palette has included being featured in its advertising campaigns as well as events across the globe in Australia, New York, Miami, and Dubai. Some of the brands presented by the model at these events include Elliatt (fun, pretty party dresses and apparel for special events), NNcy (an edgy label focused on denim), Elle Zeitoune (gorgeous gowns and fabrics). These designers comprise an ideal from beachwear to the most elegant of formality. Their choice of Kagis to walk for them confirms her diversity as a professional.
Holly reaffirms that she is more than pleased to give aid to the creatives of Australia in gaining prominence throughout the worldwide fashion industry. This fact doesn’t negate her thrill at working with the labels and designers she’s always grown up knowing. She relates, “I’m grateful to have had a long and successful career as a model with many amazing shows and campaigns under my belt. In the US I’ve modelled for Victoria’s Secret, L’Oreal, MAC Cosmetics, and Hale Bob, to name only a few. I’ve been fortunate that I’m in demand here and the work is allowing me to travel and work internationally. If you had told me at sixteen or seventeen that I’d be living overseas and traveling the world as a model, I wouldn’t have believed you. I’ve definitely gotten to do some amazing things. It’s really exciting to be cast in so many shows at important events throughout the world like LAFW, NYFW, Shanghai fashion week, El Paseo Fashion Week, Sydney fashion week and Perth fashion week. These experiences have helped me to consistently book so many shows and grow as a professional and as a person.”