Sydney’s Best Dressed 2024 Debuts Model of the Year Competition in a Night of Glamour

Photo Credit: Henry Pham

In a dazzling celebration of fashion, beauty, and talent, Sydney’s Best Dressed introduced its first-ever Model of the Year competition this year, further cementing its status as a premier fashion event. The prestigious affair took place at the five-star Sir Stamford Plaza in Mascot, attracting an audience eager to witness the rise of Australia’s next top models. Hosted by the distinguished beauty queens Sheridan Mortlock, Miss Earth Air 2022, and Nikka Marcial, Mrs Universe Official 2023, the event was a testament to the city’s vibrant fashion scene.

Photo Credit: Dave Choo

A Tradition of Excellence

Founded by Maryrose Salubre, CEO of MS Entertainment Network, Sydney’s Best Dressed has a storied history of honouring men and women for their notable achievements and contributions to fashion. Each year, the event highlights stylish individuals who embody grace, elegance, and the cutting-edge spirit of fashion. This year’s event, held on Sunday at 5 PM, expanded its horizons with the introduction of the Model of the Year competition, featuring eight exceptional finalists: Dannays, Tianna, Aylin, CJ, Laura, Grace, Fleur, and Saige.

Photo Credit: Henry Pham

Segments of Splendour

The competition was structured into five captivating segments, each designed to showcase the versatility and talent of the contestants. The first segment, “Goddess,” themed costume, set the stage with a display of creativity and elegance. The beachwear segment followed, highlighting the models’ poise and confidence in swimwear.

Photo Credit: Henry Pham

Three segments were dedicated to spotlighting the work of remarkable designers. Lari Active, an athleisure brand founded by Indira Setia Putri, presented fashion-forward designs known for their boldness, high-quality production, and ethical sourcing. Indira Setia Putri, who also graces the cover of Sydney’s Best Dressed magazine, epitomises the brand’s commitment to combining style with sustainability.

Photo Credit: Henry Pham

Sareba Fashion, the brainchild of Lily Fekadu, brought Ethiopian traditional styles to the runway, showcasing the rich cultural heritage and intricate craftsmanship of East African ethnic wear. The vibrant and authentic designs captivated the audience, offering a glimpse into the timeless traditions of Ethiopia.

Photo Credit: Henry Pham

Villoni Boutique concluded the designer showcases with a collection of exclusive and elegant dresses, each a one-of-a-kind piece perfect for special occasions. The boutique is renowned for its luxurious designs and meticulous attention to detail, making it a favourite among fashion connoisseurs.

An Esteemed Judging Panel

The competition was judged by a panel of distinguished experts in the fashion industry. Celebrity photographer Pedro Virgil, best known for his participation as a judge and photographer on the reality show Caribbean’s Next Top Model, a Guest Photographer on Australia’s Next Top Model and Project Runway Australia seasons 1 & 2. His photography has been featured in prominent magazines such as StarCentral Magazine, Men’s Health, GQ, and Sports Illustrated, is celebrated for its artistry and precision.

Kate Heussler, a model coach and personal branding expert, offered her insights as a mentor and VIP judge for numerous pageants, including Miss Teen, Miss, Ms, Mrs, and LGBTQ competitions. She has been photographed and featured in leading publications like Vogue Australia, Girlfriend Magazine, and Cosmopolitan Brides, making her a respected figure in the fashion world.

Susanna Downes, a multi-talented singer, actor, dancer, and beauty queen, completed the panel. Winner of Miss Earth Australia 2019, Susanna has showcased her talents in various arenas, including her role as Gigi Bulesco in Netflix’s The Unusual Suspects and as the host of OFTV’s second season of Model Farmers. Her diverse background and experience brought a unique perspective to the judging process.

Celebrating Excellence

The finalists excelled in all segments, showcasing their versatility and talent. Special awards were given to acknowledge outstanding performances: Dannays won Best in Theme Costume, Best in Beach Wear, and People’s Choice, reflecting her broad appeal and exceptional presence. CJ was awarded the Rising Star, highlighting her potential and promise in the fashion industry. Fleur received Best in Hollywood Glam, a testament to her elegance and poise.

The competition culminated in the announcement of the top finalists. Tianna secured the third runner-up position, followed by Saige as the second runner-up. Dannays claimed the first runner-up spot, while Fleur was crowned the winner of Sydney’s Best Dressed Model of the Year 2024, an accolade that recognises her outstanding talent and potential.

Supporting Partners and Sponsors

The event’s success was bolstered by the contributions of its photography partners, Henry Pham and Dave Choo, who captured the elegance and glamour of the evening. The support of sponsors, including Pedro Virgil, Studio 49, Maxim Australia, Kate Heussler, and Lari Active, played a crucial role in bringing the event to life.

Looking Ahead

Sydney’s Best Dressed continues to set the stage for emerging fashion talents, celebrating their achievements and contributions to the vibrant fashion community in Sydney. The introduction of the Model of the Year competition marks a new chapter in the event’s legacy, promising even greater opportunities for aspiring models in the years to come.

As Sydney’s Best Dressed looks towards the future, it remains a beacon of fashion excellence, dedicated to celebrating the artistry, creativity, and innovation that define the fashion industry.

Check out some of the photos below courtesy of Henry Pham

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