The timing meant that this time around, a lot of attention was taken away from New Zealand designers and bestowed upon their New York counterparts, but New Zealand Fashion Week is consistently proving itself to be a good reason to further clog up your schedule/Twitter feed. There were only two really big-name designers showing at this year’s event, Zambesi and Trelise Cooper, but NZFW is unique in that it’s the young innovators who usually steal the show. Here are some of the things that went down while the northern hemisphere was gearing up.
Fashion people worldwide are really into black, but New Zealand fashion designers are really, really into black. Zambesi based their whole brand on the colour and once again delivered a sulky, textural collection, peppering their favourite shade with navy velvet, dusty pinks, and sequins, though the plastic capes didn’t really add anything. Cybele’s Nocturne collection lived up to its name and balanced gothic styles with more feminine touches. At the other end of the spectrum was Company of Strangers, flying the flag for the South Island with a strong collection of even stronger shades of coral and fucshia loosely inspired by the 1980s art of Keith Haring.
There were the mainstays/Zippora Sevens and there were the newcomers/Olivia Lefebres, then there were those who totally stole the show(s). 16-year-old Holly Rose was the undisputed champion of NZFW 2012. She’s only been modeling for three months but doubled that number in the amount of shows she walked, which included the only two “big” names Zambesi and Trelise Cooper.
The Street Style
Just because Scott Schuman isn’t present doesn’t mean you can’t dress nice. In fact, it’s probably a good excuse to break out all those things he hates and New Zealanders love, like astronaut coats, more black peppered with studs, and too-short bootleg trousers. Here’s Zippora rocking the latter.
Zara Mirkin’s styling alone is reason to get crazy hyped up over the perpetually awesome Stolen Girlfriends Club show. More reasons are the insane after parties, offbeat, grungy designs, and cool venues, with their AW 2013 show held in an underground car park that had been flooded with a hose. An equally odd space at NZFW this year was a media “room” that consisted of a rocking boat docked by the venue. Not good if you’re already feeling queasy from the night before.
Cool venue competitor to Stolen Girlfriends Club was Huffer, whose show took the form of a tequila-fuelled bash at their Takapuna store and involved an exhibition of party photos by The Cobra Snake and the burglary of sculpted cactus artworks by Priscilla Hunter. The ladies behind Twenty-Seven Names, conversely, proved that the new wave of young New Zealand designers aren’t all about booze and hijinks by celebrating the end of their show with a few episodes of The Block.