“I’m an honorary Aussie,” Jason Wu told Style.com last night at the annual Australians in New York Fashion Foundation cocktail party. “I have worked with so many Australian models, have lots of friends from there, and Mardi Gras there is so insane.” Last night’s soirée in the penthouse of the High Line’s new HL23 building didn’t quite reach that level, but as one Australian grabbing a drink from the bartender sporting an “Aussies Do It Better” shirt reminded us, “Watch out—when you get a bunch of Australians together, you never know what’s going to happen.”
Burgers, musical serenades, and an auction are what happened. Both honorary and native Australians, including Italo Zucchelli (center, with Lorenzo Martone and Quin Aluni), Karlie Kloss, Ajak Deng, and Julie Anne Quay, enjoyed the surrounding views of the city before a short performance by the divas from Broadway’s Priscilla Queen of the Desert performed “I Say a Little Prayer.” Aspiring designer Laura Wade and fashion journalist Mitchell Oakley Smith had their prayers answered this past year, when the foundation announced them as grant winner (Wade) and runner-up (Smith). To raise money to support these young antipodean talents, the foundation auctioned off images by Australian photographers, such as Daniela Federici and Jason Kibbler.
“I like photos, but I don’t ever take them. It’s weird,” said Zucchelli, as he looked on at an image of Anna Nicole Smith by Federici. “It’s better to live in the moment, you know?”