Backstage Designer Pass | Facet Fashion Week

Happy Weekend Everyone !

If you are in Australia you will be enjoying it just a little bit more because it’s a long weekend Thanks to the Queens Birthday public Holiday – Hooraaayyy for public holidays.

It was honestly such an exciting moment when I looked at the calendar and realised I get an Extra day on the weekend to work towards yet another Goal – Which I will share with you all soon #bigannouncement is coming soon so keep your eyes out ! BUT what is MORE EXCITING then finding out there is a long weekend coming up, is my Facet fashion week SHOWCASE experience !!!!

So many people have been asking me of my experience overseas and sometimes I get lost for words or I just keep repeating “It was amazing – Just amazing” because I still can’t believe I went and did that. It hasn’t sunk in – still feels so surreal !

It is so hard to go about your day to day business, working your crazy-houred-weekday-fashion-job, not look tired, not get sick and become run down, to look after your health, eat well, exercise (so-you-don’t-look-like-a-fat-frump-next-to-all-the-gorgeous-skinny-models)and also work on your High-Fashion Range behind the scenes – all while you keep it a BIG DAM SECRET so people don’t think you haven’t got your priorities set straight – THERE I SAID IT ! 🙂

I think what I have accomplished and what I was able to do in such a small time frame, is so amazing, and I’m not just saying that to boast but seriously I am actually proud of myself and I think it is important for me to acknowledge that. It has been too long since I actually rewarded and appreciated my own efforts. For such a long time I thought, there has got to be something wrong here, to work this hard and not have anyone notice – but somewhere, somehow, someone noticed and answered my prayers, with that I got to experience this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

I don’t think I’ve ever been so calm and collected about something so big in my life though.

Being an overly OCD organised Individual, I guess working on your own terms and schedule and knowing what you can actually achieve and how much the output on a certain day will be really helps.

Facet Fashion week happened so quickly, blink of an eye, That this weekend will probably be a month since I had the Fitting and the Show. Feels like just yesterday.

My experience Of the fitting was great, just regular, routine kind of thing. It is so crazy when you aren’t helping another designer get their range on the runway, and it is actually YOUR OWN turn, YOUR OWN collection. I’ve had so much experience of this in my lifetime thanks to some amazing designers and stylists who gave me that opportunity. Who knew the universe was preparing me for paving my own road to success ? I’m glad my outgoing Australian personality attracted more models and a crowd than I thought. I enjoyed my time at the fits a lot, it was a breeze and there were so many talented, gorgeous models who loved my collection. I think I left a good impression, a piece of Ratavosi, I feel, is embedded in their memories. I know this because I had models come up to me throughout the Fits and the actual night of the show telling me how much they loved particular pieces. I love that, when they pick a piece and fall in love with it. I can’t explain the feeling I get when that happens, like I have filled a gap in someones life – similar to that.


I must also mention here – my assistant from the trip, friend and future sister in law – Karina. Who i’m sure I scared a little, with how fast I acted and moved from one garment to another, one conversation to another – Sorry Kazzie, I must say you did very well to keep up with me and I’m very thankful I had you there by my side to do all the things I thought I didn’t do – It was really nice to have your support and reassurance – especially when I screamed “OMG I DIDN’T EVEN CHECK THE MODELS ONE LAST TIME BEFORE I PUSHED THEM OUT ON THAT RUNWAY” and you turned around and assured me you did ! – So thank you for that. Couldn’t have stayed sane without you. 🙂 **happy smiley faces all around**

hmm What else about the Fits can I tell you all.

I remember a lot about the day of the fits and the fitting itself actually. My day was consumed by ironing, steaming and bagging each of my looks, so they would be fresh and runway ready/ Fitting ready. It is also very important to have your looks be crisp and read to go even for fits, I like to see the garments sit on them perfectly and fall perfectly where they need to without having to worry about creases and unnecessary poofy bits. That was successful, so I started to get ready for the night. After this my cousin called an uber for Karina and I – the driver we had for the fits wasn’t nearly as funny as the one we had for the actual night of the show – Me being the very OTT organised OCD girl that I am – kind of gave the guy a sarcastically hard time – I think by the end of it he couldn’t tell whether I was joking or not and if I was actually going to go all DESIGNERZILLA on him if he caused any kind of harm/damage to my clothes in the back of his little white prius. hahaha Fond memories of that Uber ride – whoever he was I hope he remembers me because he was actually a great driver and he had a sense of humour…After what I put him through, I’m sure glad he had one !

As we got out of the Prius, carrying 6 heavy Black Garment bags, as well as our own belongings and my planner – we can’t forget the planner..I’m also pretty sure we had a mini suitacase with us too – we noticed a reaaalllllyyyyy long ass line wrapped around Hollywood Boulevard and Orange. What was the crowd and the line for ?! – MAD MAX PREMIERE !! After finally lugging our belongings to the front of the line where the Madame Tussaud entrance was, we were informed that the fitting had been moved to Hard Rock – Streets Blocked off, we had to walk all the way around the crowds and the Hollywood commotion to finally get to Hard Rock Cafe on Hollywood Boulevard. The upside, was that we got to see parts of the premiere and also some of the actors, it wasn’t so bad after all.

As we walked into the Hard Rock cafe and were directed to the Studio room for the fitting, a huge wave of relief came over me, ahhh finally, we have arrived ! Australia is here everyone hahaha

It was such a lovely experience, and I find it is always such a daunting task trying to visualize what your garments will look like and then comparing it to what they will look like on a particular model – and if the two marry up – then voila ! I must say with my big booty, I felt right at home. Although it was a little hard fitting my structured, tailored, Australian Standard garments on the American models it was still really nice to see that curvy girls with small waists where taking over the runway. I found it so interesting the proportions of the models from this show. They were curvy, and a few voluptuous – it gave me confidence, just as a regular Joe to feel comfortable in my own skin too. That’s another thing I love about LA !

Overall, the fits went well – I ummed and ahhed about a few styles on a few girls but we managed to get there eventually – Right Kazz !?

Here are a few snaps we took as the models tried on the range:


After asking the organisers a million questions – Kazz and I decided we just needed a break, and well, what better place to rest then the Restaurant you’re in right ?! didn’t even have to move.



we were hungry

Can you tell we were hungry ? – Stomachs full, fits completed, tired as Mofo’s… another Uber was called and we went home… Mission complete !

IMG_3785       The Next day was “SHOWTIME” – Once again I took out my garments, washed the stains off, dried, steamed and ironed them to perfection. This left me with 3 hours to get ready and prep my hair and makeup. Sounded pretty reasonable to me because who the hell wants to walk down that runway looking all disheveled – REALLY !? Ain’t nobody got time fo DAT !


Finally, the night I’d been waiting for. It all happened just so quickly I felt like someone just pressed fast forward on my “Shine” Moment.

I remember few things but good things – This is how it went – Try to stay with me.

We got there, Madame Tussaud’s Rooftop. Took a rack, organised our looks and our gear, spaced everything out and organised it so we had everything under control. Checked our looks again, took off any final pins, any accessories that needed to go with any looks. We then froze our butts off for 3 hours trying to keep busy. The attendees of the night started to arrive, drinks and entertainment was happening at the cocktail hour on the Madame Tussauds rooftop. All the models started to get into their first looks and as everyone stood by on standby the show began. I only had one model who was my first look so the models who were in my show and in a previous show had to have REALLY EXTREMELY QUICK changes… I’m talking within a matter of seconds.


Gorgeous Tiffany and I Before the Show


As the show began and Sanyae Demure opened with their collection – all of a sudden time wasn’t moving so slowly… it went by ultra fast – The models came off the runway and all I could hear was Miss Dunnie O yelling Ratavosi the Label we need you and we need you now. Somehow my memory skips from that moment and me looking at Lola’s face saying where are the models ?! A quick two second change. No time for perfection. My models and I ran to the top of the staircase and that was my moment. 6 looks on the runway, one at a time. Then finally as Tiffany walked off the runway, I couldn’t imagine anything worse then having to go by myself. She ran, I grabbed her hand, and although I had asked for the lovely Christina to walk down with me, it was okay because not everything goes to plan at times like this but Tiffany saved the night and saved me from a potential hyperventilation attack. All of a sudden I was on that runway with Tiffany. Lights shining. A beautifully dressed audience in all white. It was beautiful. I remember looking down as I walked out because I totally didn’t want to embarrass myself and trip,then I remember saying to myself – RHAYA – Look up – SMILE – You’re on the runway hunny – and I blew a kiss at that moment to someone… I don’t know who caught my kiss.. but I woke up at that moment. It felt like the longest moment on the runway but it was probably only even a minute. Or less than a minute. Tiffany and I finally reached the front of the runway – I looked at her and I said “Tiffany you look gorgeous” , posed for a photo with her for the cameras and then we walked back. I waved at my friends and family on the way out as I exited. I remember getting off the runway, walking down those steps and thinking…OH. MY.GOD – DID I JUST DO THAT !!! I TOTALLY JUST DID THAT…WTF someone pinch me…. did I just do all of that.. WOW – I DID THAT ! Those 6 minutes of runway time was everything that I’d been working for – It’s crazy when you think of it like that. All that work, such little time. It was amazing.


I also got to meet some really loveley, talented people. There were so many models I spoke to and became friends with. Above is a photo of me with another Designer Kris Amarillo who was showcasing her range Tales For Esther.


And I’ve saved the Best for Last – Miss Dunnie O ! She’s so beautiful.

Thank you to so many people who supported me throughout my journey for Facet. All the kind, generous people who contributed towards my fundraiser I set up for this. Everyone at Facet Fashion week for their efforts and hard work to organising such a fantastic event and the opportunity and experience they let young, upcoming designers like my self, experience. You should all be proud of what you have offered us and what you guys do – everyday !

and lastly, I’d like to thank my family and friends who as always, put up with my crazy adventures, journeys, moods and ideas ! Without my craziness, we all know your lives would be so boring… but having said that, without your support I wouldn’t be as strong and as motivated as I am today – and I better not forget to mention how proud I am of not only myself but of everyone. It hasn’t just been a learning experience for me. Everyone has been living this with me.

So thank you…

oh and before I go…

another special person in my life.

Grandma… Medsmum… I love you and I hope I made you proud. I hope you were watching – you and grandpa, up there, maybe some popcorn ?

Love you both so much xxx

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Bonne Nuit everybody.

Goodnight World, have a wonderful week and don’t forget to #dreambig

Much love,

Rhaya Ratavosi | Ratavosi The Label | The Life Of Rhy

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