Race wear, ruffles, plunging necklines and sheer panels dominated the catwalk when emerging designers showed off their creations at this year’s Fashion Awards Australia.

Budding designers from across the country and design students from secondary colleges, TAFEs and tertiary colleges descended on Lakeside Banquet and Convention Centre in Taylors Lakes last Friday to display their works in a range of categories.

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Ladylike elegance was a popular theme on the night, with full skirts, ballet-inspired costumes and head pieces galore in categories, including chic day wear, recycled wearable art, calico, costume fantasy, cocktail wear, high fashion and long gowns.

Many designers, including Emma Rock from Sacred Heart at Geelong, modelled their own creations on the night.

St Albans Secondary College design students stole the show, taking out the school cup ahead of Ballarat Grammar and Werribee’s MacKillop College.

It’s the fifth time in the awards’ 18-year history that the St Albans school has taken out the top gong.

Teacher Michael Bowden said the Fashion Awards gave Australian students great hands-on experience.

“This is a fantastic competition; it’s such a great experience for the kids,” Mr Bowden said.

MacKillop College students also won a slew of awards, with Holly Defina taking out the Rising Star award for the year 9 and 10 category, and Daria Messina winning the Rising Star award in the year 11 and 12 category.

Jessica Lawrence, from the Kangan Institute, won Designer of the Year, while Fashion Award veteran Errick Kim, who submitted seven designs across the range of categories, was named Australian Designer of the Year.

Awards director Heather Marcus said the awards celebrated Australian fashion and encouraged new and budding designers to perfect their craft.