Melbourne Fashion Festival has well and truly arrived, and one woman who knows all about it is top fashion stylist, and fashion queen herself, Lana Wilkinson.

Not only has Lana dressed and styled some of the most glamorous celebrities around, but she herself has been a true pioneer in the industry – breaking fashion boundaries, taking risks, supporting Australian designers and encouraging women all over the country to have fun with their style.

So when I got the opportunity to interview the woman known as ‘Australia’s fashion stylist to the stars’, I won’t lie, I was pretty excited and absolutely thrilled!

As we step into a new season, here’s a sneak peak into which items we should be investing in, which trends to get excited about and just what magic touch Lana adds when creating the perfect look …

This must be a thrilling time of year for you – what do you love most about VAMFF and which designer are you most excited to see on the runway?

VAMFF is such a great time of year in Melbourne. The changing season sees new trends down the runway and Melbournians are excited to start layering again.

As a stylist, I see most of the collections in advance, so I enjoy seeing how the brands mix it on the runway and how the fashion influencers put together their looks for the week.

It’s so hard to choose a favourite! I work closely with many great Australian brands and I think they all bring something unique and exciting to the Australian fashion landscape. A few of my favourites include; Dion Lee, Aje, Bianca Spender & Carla Zampatti and I’m watching emerging brands such as Arnsdorf, Double Rainbouu and Blair Archibald that you’ll also see at VMAFF.

As a stylist and fashionista – what trends are you most excited about for the upcoming season?

I LOVE a power suit! This season we will watch the suiting trend continue, with bold architectural blazers and matching trousers that are able to be worn in the workplace and also on the weekends. We’re also seeing animal prints everywhere, which can be a fun trend to mix into your wardrobe.

I’m loving that so many girls are using leopard and snake skin accessories to overhaul their new season looks. These have the power to transform an outfit, but are still extremely wearable and chic.

You have dressed some of the most glamorous women around – Who would you say your style icons are? And who would be your dream client to style?

Thank you! I’m lucky to work with some extremely talented and glamorous women who provide me with endless style inspiration. Olivia Palermo is a huge inspiration of mine. She realises that the accessories “make the outfit” and always ensures that the details are on point.

Another woman with incredible style is Gigi Hadid who is a dream client of mine. Gigi has become so huge in popular culture and never fails to deliver with her killer looks. She is frequently walking the runways for the biggest designers in haute couture, but can just as easily nail her street style look while she’s seen out for coffee.

Fashion has evolved so much over the years – we’re seeing people really having fun, expressing themselves and taking risks – what changes have you loved seeing in the industry? Both in trends and the way people approach fashion?

I think individuality has always been embraced within the fashion world however; we are seeing this more now than ever. I continually encourage girls to take fashion risks and express themselves through their clothing choices. At the end of the day, if a client is feeling confident in an outfit, they will always look great in front of the camera.

Confidence really is the key to being able to pull off bold fashion choices.

The industry now welcomes innovative designs and celebrates women of all shapes and sizes. This message of being beautiful without conforming to social norms is one that I am passionate about and love to see designers supporting.

If I was to invest in 3 staple pieces – what should they be?

* A blazer

* A great pair of pointed pumps

* Flattering and well-fitting denim

Describe your style in 3 words

A mad rush!