Clothes are what we wear, fashion is about breaking rules and having fun, and personal style is a form of expression— there is no right or wrong. If there was something that you’ve always wanted to try, then you should definitely go ahead. It can be a process of trial and error, but experimentation can be your best friend…
This is how I’ve always felt about fashion.
Attending #NZFW was an opportunity to meet like minds, providing a valid and immediate opportunity to talk about fashion, art and design. In my eyes fashion is the perfect living visual medium. When we wear our clothes we bring them to life; fabric begins to fade or soften, and our clothing develops a living history.
I’ll be the first to admit that I fall hard and often, and there are items in my wardrobe that I treasure as if they were works of art. When I love an item there’s an emotional connection that sometimes can’t be explained.
I love pockets and unusual buttons because they remind me of my grandmother, along with those Peter Pan collars that take me back to the homemade dresses that she would make for me and my sisters. I adore playing with colour but I also love black—the tried and true Kiwi favourite—I don’t think I could ever stick to one look, because it would simply bore me to tears and I’m terrible at sticking to the rules (even if I’ve set them myself).
I do, however, admire those who have a honed-down aesthetic and as much as I love over-sized minimalist garments, put me in one and the item swallows me whole. I become not just the girl in a potato sack but probably Mr Potato head himself…all potato with the protruding arms and legs. It ain’t pretty.
But aside from an inspirational week of fashion, below are some of the highlights (and lower lights) from my experience:
The moments that made my week…
- Chewing gum. I searched everywhere. I was like a woman shriveling away in the desert in desperate need of water: “Must…get…gum…” I was hungry, thirsty and my mouth was so dry. A glass bowl on top of one of the on-site cafe counters appeared like a mirage. I pulled out my EFTPOS card and lo and behold, it was free!
- Being in the photography pit at the beginning of the week—that ‘blue steel’ moment is all for the photographers. It’s also a bit of a buzz when the cameras start clicking simultaneously.
- ‘The Bachelor’, Arthur Green’s shoulders exploding out of a Crane Brother’s suit. Are his shoulders really that massive, or was the suit just a tad too small?
- Cedric Pasco walking for Kate Sylvester. He looked amazing! (I’ve got an interview coming your way soon).
- Multicultural casting. I couldn’t help but notice how diverse the models were at the original casting and so many of these faces were present on the runway. It gives the audience a feeling of inclusion.
- The marriage proposal live on the runway at Miromoda had everyone guessing whether it was real, or just a publicity stunt. It came across as very genuine and it felt quite special to have witnessed this moment.
The Lower Lights
- I can’t believe we waited for over an hour for giant mirror balls to be hung for Annah Stretton’s show. She presented soooooooo many garments that I just wanted the show to end.
- Being shunted by one of the international delegates (name not to be disclosed). Upon asking her if she would like to comment on the Miromoda show she looked down her nose in disdain, informing me that she had to go to a meeting. In the same breath she could have said, “Yeah the show was great!” I saw her later hanging out in the foyer.
- I walked head-first into a sign post on my way back to the city because I was trying to write a tweet about what I saw at one of the shows. I’m 4’11, how could a sign be so low?
- Having very little visibility at Stolen Girlfriends Club where I had people’s backs and elbows in my face. I was tempted to leave, but I’m happy that I stayed to get some shots that I’m happy with.
- Each morning I raced out the door with only minutes to spare. I was the crazy lady running in heels with an assortment of microphone, notebook and other stuff flying out of my bag…
Photography by Sonia Sly