The vision of the National Indigenous Fashion Awards (NIFA) is to create and develop an event that provides a vibrant and exciting platform to celebrate innovation, diversity and ethical practices of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists and fashion designers, whilst contributing to the capacity building of the sector.

NIFA is proudly presented by the  Darwin Aboriginal Art Fair Foundation (DAAFF) and has grown out of the success of the Country to Couture fashion runway event that is held every August as part of the Darwin Aboriginal Art Fair (DAAF) program. Country to Couture is a celebration of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander textiles and fashion design, and is a contemporary way of cultural storytelling, and sharing knowledge. The runway show has brought much attention to Indigenous fashion over the past four years, and places Darwin as the nation’s beating heart of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander art and fashion.

Australian Indigenous fashion is rapidly emerging and gaining global attention. The Northern Territory Government has recognised the need to support this developing space, and will work closely with DAAFF to ensure that the NIFA provides capacity building opportunities for Indigenous Art Centres, emerging Indigenous fashion and textile designers, and recognise excellence in the industry.

The NIFA 2021

The award ceremony will be held on 3 August 2021, and will showcase collections and designs from Australia’s leading First Nations designers and artists. It is a unique opportunity for the Australian and international fashion community to connect to the world’s oldest living cultures.

The Six NIFA Categories:

  • Cultural Adornment and Wearable Art Award | Recognises worn items, created as fine or expressive art, used to define or express culture.
  • Textile Design Award | Includes designs of woven, knitted or other textile constructions, as well as dyed, printed or surface ornamented textiles.
  • Fashion Design Award | Recognises a commercial fashion label with a minimum of two collections of original design of clothing, jewellery or accessories.
  • Social and Environmental Contribution Award | Excellence and leadership in environmental and social development understanding, and practice in relation to textiles and fashion.
  • Community Collaboration Award | Recognition of effective and productive relationships between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and the textile and fashion industry.
  • Special Recognition Award | For a group, organisation, or individual that has shown exceptional contribution to the development of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander textiles and fashion.

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