Politics aside, no one does the Midwinter Ball quite like Julie Bishop.

On Tuesday night, politicians, journalists and the business elite came together for the Midwinter Ball in Canberra, putting their policy views and politics aside to put on their black tie best to raise money for charity.

This year, the event managed to raise a record $350,000 for a number of Australian charities, just over $5,000 more than last year’s ball.

As the one night of the year politics takes a back seat to fashion and photos, our Foreign Minister Julie Bishop donned a silver, violet and feather-clad Rachel Gilbert gown.

And there’s no doubt about it, the dress was stunning.

And while the rest of the day will no doubt be full of conversations about more important things – and of note, the fact a liberal donor once established a fund called the Julie Bishop Glorious Foundation – let us for a second appreciate that this is the same gown that has featured in the pages of Vogue when Gilbert herself posed for a profile.

It also happens to be the second year in a row Bishop wore a Gilbert creation, last year wearing a striking black, off-the-shoulder number.

Bishop has been a long and enthusiastic supporter of our fashion industry, telling the Sydney Morning Herald last year there’s a reason she always consults local designers.

“One should never underestimate the importance that fashion plays in our social, cultural and economic fabric. Our creative industries, like fashion, music and the arts, contribute $90 billion to our economy. The possibilities and creativity I see in Australian fashion are endless.”

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