Some claim Hawkins has spread herself too thin so will it be time to break out the tissues? Is there a special Hawkins line of Kleenex hitting supermarket shelves?

Myer chief executive Bernie Brookes will be sitting down with her representatives this month to see whether a new deal can be nutted-out, on the back of research, which will say how strongly Hawkins is associated with Myer.

There has been no hint given on the findings of this research but what is known is that she is very warmly received in the wider community. Foxtel discovered this when they were looking for a suitable host for Australia’s Next Top Model.

Interestingly, there is talk that a new commercial agreement has already been done and dusted with Myer. Or has it?

“The problem with Jen is that she spreads herself much too thinly now,” said one well-known industry source, who preferred not to be named. “She is an ambassador for almost everything not nailed down. This makes her less believable when it comes to pushing fashion.”

Myer Spring Summer 2014 Collection LaunchAmong the brands that Hawkins has helped spruik are Range Rover, Lovable Lingerie, Mount Franklin water, Bioglan vitamins and Redwin Skincare.

On top of this she’s had her own labels including COZI swimwear, JLH shoes and now a collection of self-tanning products, JBronze.

It’s not hard to pinpoint the major part of her appeal, despite her increasingly refined features (she is almost unrecognisable from the young woman who won the Miss Universe crown in Ecuador in 2004) and her multi-million dollar property portfolio, she is still the girl next door. She even married a former chippie, Jake Wall

The other big selling point is that she is never perceived to be difficult or to exhibit diva behaviour.

Not for her the haughty model attitude, which is why she works so well flogging clothes for a mass- market department store chain.

“I’ve never really treated myself as a model,” the former Miss Universe said ahead of last night’s show. “There are so many things that I do, it’s not just about my external appearance. I represent brands as a person.”

It will be interesting to see whether Myer is now one brand too many for Hawkins.


Elle Halliwell THE VERDICT

MYER loves a spectacle, and while this year’s parade certainly had a showstopper or two it was the clothes which took precedent over pageantry.

The catwalk was straight and unadorned, save for glittered earth-toned side panels, a reference to the store’s campaign shoot in WA’s Kimberleys, and its usual penchant for model formations was largely restrained.

Jennifer Hawkins opened in a white Manning Cartell dress, the first of many – possibly too many – colourless frocks to hit the runway.

It appeared countless times in different styles – structured at Nicola Finetti, embellished and micro at sass & bide and feminine, floaty and belted at Morrison.

Ten-gallon-style Akubra hats appeared throughout the parade, accessorising bronze sequined gowns and separates by Aurelio Costarella and strapless croc-effect metallic frocks in the Toni Maticevski finale.

The store’s swimwear offerings were a complete departure from the largely muted ready-to-wear collections.

Hawkins modelled a teeny triangle orange bikini from her Cozi swimwear range, which also featured aqua and purple printed designs, while Seafolly – which recently announced its exclusive alignment with the store from Christmas – provided the only pop of neon in its bold poolside collection.

The department store put its competition to shame when it came to offerings for the blokes.

Autonomy, Trent Nathan, Dom Bagnato and Brooksfield were just a few of the menswear brands to take to the runway, with pale blues and navy the dominant shades for suiting. Double breasted jackets made a re-appearance after a few seasons.

Kym Ellery sat front row watching her collection grace another department store runway, having showed her spring-summer range on the David Jones catwalk last week.

It followed a court battle over her defection to the rival store, which resulted in both stores having to stock her wares until 2015.

Ellery’s designs are selling well, according to a spokeswoman, with a few dresses already a sell-out.

“Our buyers are very much focused on what our customers love and already some of the dresses have sold out,” she said.

THE gloomy weather did nothing to deter local stars from descending on the flashy red carpet rolled out at Fox Studios’ Stage Seven last night for Myer’s anticipated Spring Summer Collection launch.

Sydney’s A-listers were out in force to catch a glimpse of the department store’s latest.

Among the 550 guests there to watch the 62 models showcase the garments were designers Heidi Middleton, Toni Maticevski, Aurelio Costarella and Kym Ellery as well as Myer Ambassadors Laura Dundovic and Lauren Phillips.

Off the red carpet and on to the parade, the guest chosen to be seated in the place of honour right next to Myer chief executive officer, Bernie Brookes, was rock n’ roll designer Wayne Cooper.

Earlier in the day Alex Perry had boasted to associates he would be at Brookes’ right hand. Instead, Perry was sat front row flanked by hisAustralia’s Next Top Model colleagues Charlotte Dawson and Didier Cohen, possibly feeling a little snubbed.

He’s one of the strongest members of the David Jones family of fashion designers.

Could his front row seating be a sign of his changing allegiance?

Perhaps, but not just yet we hear.

Perry’s contract with David Jones runs out in April although the flamboyant designer has made no secret of the fact he is keeping his options open.

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