DEPARTMENT store collections launches are typically industry-only events at which executives, media and designers hobnob over champagne and canapes.
But that will change when both David Jones and Myer live-stream their autumn-winter fashion shows for the public in a new, all-inclusive approach aimed at generating more sales through a deeper engagement with customers.
DJs will be first cab off the rank when it streams its Sydney fashion showcase on February 15, followed by Myer's streaming of its autumn-winter launch in Melbourne on March 1.
''All our customers will have a front-row seat from the comfort of their own lounge room,'' said Marion Joyce, of David Jones.
The traditional purpose of a collections launch is to promote new-season clothing to the media but both department stores concede there is a need to communicate more directly to the people who buy the clothes.
''We value the media and that's important to us but the other part is we want to get that information out to the consumer as soon as possible, to tell them what's hot and fashion-forward,'' said Megan Foster of Myer.
''With the way the customer now interacts with everything we do with social media and online, we know they want to be part of it straightaway; they don't want to feel excluded.
''It's like watching a football game. You don't want to watch a replay, you want to watch it live.''
DJs will stream on its Facebook page. Myer will do so on its website.
Both stores will have new-season clothes from their launches on their websites immediately, enabling customers to to buy them after watching Myer's ambassador, Jennifer Hawkins, and the David Jones ambassador, Miranda Kerr, strut down the runway.
While the technology this season is casting forward, both department stores are looking back to their heritage for the venues of their launches.
David Jones will hold its fashion show on the seventh floor of its Elizabeth Street premises, which hosted a state banquet for the Queen's visit to Australia in 1954, and a Christian Dior couture show in the 1960s.
Construction began four months ago to restore the floor, which opened in 1928.
''We are delighted to bring back the iconic level seven space as a destination for special occasions for our customers,'' said the chief executive of David Jones, Paul Zahra.
Myer will present its new fashions in the heritage-listed Mural Hall of its Bourke Street store, which hosted dinners for the homeless during the Great Depression and later Dior and Chanel shows direct from Paris.
The venues for both shows will prove apt backdrops for the new season's ladylike trends, which include lower hemlines, soft silks and woollens, and classic coats to be teamed with bright colours and prints for a contemporary twist.