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New Zealand Fashion Week autumn–winter 2014, day two: tying the knot to underground magic


NEWS
Filed by Sopheak Seng/September 4, 2013/14.43


Deryn Schmidt

Matthew Beveridge/Matthew Beveridge Photography

Opening day two of NZFW was Wellington designer Deryn Schmidt. A photograph that her daughter Millicent took of her son Lars’s mobile originally inspired her winter collection, entitled Capture This. This image was later developed into the first exclusive textile print for Schmidt, adapted by textile designer Andrea Stark. The collection was not too much of a departure for the brand: the mature æsthetic of the Deryn Schmidt brand was there in the beautiful tailoring, impeccable attention to detail and flawless finishing in the structured coats, skirts, jackets and capelets.
   However, what appealed was her foray into knitwear. For the first time, she worked with local knitting mills to develop some outstanding knitwear: a beautiful pointelle knit cape with frilled edging in deep berry and putty, as well as the tri-colour stripe V-neck pullovers. These added great dimension to the collection and helped showcase something else that Schmidt has an eye for. Stand-outs from the collection were Schmidt’s coats and her signature pants which were cut in beautiful cords, velvet and wool, and came in chocolate, grey and berry. They also came in a cigarette style with gold zip ankle detailing, legging-style with mesh panelling, or in a classic tailored suit style.
   Schmidt ventured into eveningwear as well, which was a study in contrast, with her draped dot mesh and knitted body dresses, showing a feminine ’30s, as did the brocade bustiers and sheer negligĂ©e-style dresses worn with colour-matched leotards. Styled by Barry Betham, the show took us onto a bygone era of glamour as hair was waved and bobbed in a silver-screen siren style, helped along with the deep berry lips and soft make-up by Smashbox.






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Matthew Beveridge/Matthew Beveridge Photography



Nikita Brown/Nikita Brown Photography

Nyne
Hamilton label Nyne was next, with their collection entitled Nomadic. This was the label’s second outing at fashion week, while celebrating the design collective’s ninth birthday. As a cloud of smoke appeared from the back of the runway and a lone musician strummed on a bass, the parade of models in their layered looks stalked like a modern-day wandering tribe, in search of greener pastures in a desolate barren landscape. This was a more thoughtful collection for the group, and it was exciting to see how the brand has developed season after season. Having long been fans of their clothing, it was a breath of fresh air to see maturity in their designs and a considered and self-confident hand. Colours of slate grey, black and white were punctuated with blood red. The collection borrowed heavily on menswear references, creating a soft androgyny to the collection. Wide-leg shorts, slouchy style shirts and fisherman-knit jumpers were paired with fluid layers of draped long-line skirts and vests in crĂŞpe, viscose, georgette and mesh. Outerwear was cut in molten wool, and leather-like Ts provided shelter against the harsh elements, as did the specially created wide-brimmed felt hats. From the styling to the models with their faux hawk of fish braids to the considered layered, this was a collection that delivered a strong and clear message for winter. When disassembled on a shop floor and the pieces are laid out, it will still all make sense to any wearer, and pieces will be treasured upon one’s travels.




Matthew Beveridge/Matthew Beveridge Photography



Nikita Brown/Nikita Brown Photography



Matthew Beveridge/Matthew Beveridge Photography





Nikita Brown/Nikita Brown Photography

The New Zealand Weddings magazine bridal showcase
The New Zealand Weddings magazine bridal showcase is open to the general public and is a hotly sought ticket for any bride-to-be and her beguiling groom. For the coming bridal season, designers looked back to traditional bridal attire as lace in all its guises made a return back to the runway as a strong key message.

Vinka Bridal
   Vinka Bridal opened the show, looking back to the ’70s, with its crocheted lace two-piece bridal suit through to the ’80s horror of lace and meringue-like confections. Thankfully there was a sigh of relief as contemporary interpretations of these trends were showcased in sleek shift-style gowns. Heavily embellished in crystals and lace, there was still the element of the past, which worked beautifully and is a big trend for bridal fashion.






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Nikita Brown/Nikita Brown Photography

Sera Lilly
   Designer Sera Lilly certainly knows how to draw in a jaded crowd of fashion people: bring out the kids in adorably cute and beautiful creations. For flower girls, Lilly created ballerina-style tulle skirts with three-dimensional flower appliquĂ©s in colours of navy, peach and white. She also offered easy-to-wear casual dresses that were fun and flirty. For the page boy, Lilly offered beautiful tailored florals as well. For the bride, this is where Lilly shone, sending a more fuller-figured bride down the runway. It was great to see how Lilly caters to such a diverse range of customers—and it should be noted that she supported marriage equality. Simple and elegant, her designs are made to flatter women: a stand-out was the gorgeous lace appliquĂ©d peplum top and tailored pants.





Matthew Beveridge/Matthew Beveridge Photography



Nikita Brown/Nikita Brown Photography

Crane Brothers
   Murray Crane’s Crane Brothers label offered the groom a very modern take on traditional wear. Prince of Wales check and houndstooth suits were cut slim, and trousers skimmed the ankles, as men’s fashion took on a more European feel. It expressed itself further with the tie and pocket square. Pale greys, deep navy, browns and Bordeaux red are some of the key colours for the wedding suit; Crane Brothers also offered le smoking as an alternative to the tuxedo for the brave groom.







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Nikita Brown/Nikita Brown Photography

Alma Wong
   Alma Wong followed next with her whimsical, pretty and princess-worthy gowns. Wong was the only designer who dared to showcase colour, albeit in pastel hues of lilac, blush, rose and soft mints. Colour is a big trend for brides overseas and it was good to see that there is someone offering international trends to a New Zealand consumer base. Her gowns are cut beautifully and expertly beaded, each one more stunning than the last.




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Matthew Beveridge/Matthew Beveridge Photography

Robyn Cliffe
   Robyn Cliffe took us on tour of the roaring ’20s for her collection offering Gatsby-inspired sheaths of beaded crystals and bias-cuts gowns in champagne and ivory silk. No ’20s bride would be complete without a flapper-style veil or headband to complete the look. Cliffe delivered some of the most stunning gowns, blending over-the-top ideas with understatement, where the fabric spoke all the words. She also gave some of the best veils from the show. Artfully styled.






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Nikita Brown/Nikita Brown Photography

Working Style
   Working Style was a new addition to the line-up this year and in turn offered great suiting for men, everything from traditional tuxedos and two-button suits through to morning coats with tails. They again offered velvet smoking jackets in shades of wine and navy as an alternative; pants were cut slim and jackets even slimmer.




Matthew Beveridge/Matthew Beveridge Photography



Nikita Brown/Nikita Brown Photography

John Zimmerman
   John Zimmerman closed off proceedings for the bridal show with his couture line. Extreme glamour was the call of the day as giant tulle confections paraded down the runway and extravagant headpieces topped off each look. The closing gown for the show really pushed the boundaries of art, fashion and bridal wear as leather and lace were mixed with crystals and beading, the dress referencing stained-glass windows and Theirry Mugler’s Aliens collection, with its hip peplums and highly sexualized vision.







Matthew Beveridge/Matthew Beveridge Photography

Underground
What do you get when you cross 10 photographers, 10 designers and an underground carpark? You get what can only be best described as Andy Warhol’s Factory on acid. The mastermind behind today’s fashion installation was Chris Lorimer of Ciel PR. He gathered 10 of the best emerging and underground edgy labels and created mini-living mise-en-scènes in which every label showcased a teaser from their upcoming winter collections. Stand-outs from those that showed were Jimmy D., whose label is still one to watch, as his quirky sense of humour comes through his clever and ironic use of imagery in clothing. Kowtow also stood out for its maturity in design, in creating fashionable and wearable clothes with a conscience. Geometric grids in black and white were fashioned into soft tailored jackets and shirt dresses, easy-to-wear and comfortable, and it was interesting to see the brand branch out into woven garments. Thistle Brown showcased his usual quirky and off-beat knits. New discovery Eugene was a welcome sight as her soft colour palette of sky blue and grey was fashioned into an amazing bomber and skirt outfit—I wanted to see more.
   The installation also showed works from some of New Zealand’s most talented photographers. The concept behind the show was brilliant as it gave people the opportunity to view garments up close, admire the details and experience the vibe of what a designer is trying to speak to us about, something often missed in a runway show.



Matthew Beveridge/Matthew Beveridge Photography


Nikita Brown/Nikita Brown Photography





Matthew Beveridge/Matthew Beveridge Photography








Nikita Brown/Nikita Brown Photography

Stolen Girlfriends
Stolen Girlfriends’ Club rounded out the day’s events with an off-site show in yet another car park. Leave it to the design collective of SGC to pack out a car park of loyal and die-hard fans who are willing to stand six deep just to breathe in and soak in the coolness that is SCG. Dirty Magic is the title of the collection and called upon references of ’90s Nirvana-era grunge, black magic, witchcraft, gypsies, goths, boho and punk. Pinstripe suiting, mauve tartan and flocked velvet paisley were the key fabrics which were fashioned into tailored trousers and jackets for guys, school-grey shirts and punk-inspired knicker-bockers. For women, the stand-outs were the gypsy-inspired dresses that were cut with thigh-high splits as well as leather and velvet bell-bottom trousers. Other stand-outs were the wraparound kilts, tartan maxi-skirts, leather high-waisted skirts and the leather and hair cape. Shown in a concise and strong colour palette of black, red, deep wine, mauve and school grey, it was a well edited and grown-up collection. Perfectly accessorized with tribal-look jewellery fashioned from safety pins and wide brimmed hats with bandanas of paisley fabric, this was a show that oozed coolness from its very pore. If you strip away the crazy styling and make-up, there was a commercially wearable aspect to the clothes that will definitely keep the punters vying for a piece of the SCG lifestyle.—Sopheak Seng, Fashion and Beauty Editor

















Matthew Beveridge/Matthew Beveridge Photography







Nikita Brown/Nikita Brown Photography




Nikita Brown/Nikita Brown Photography

Editor’s note: A more comprehensive follow-up on Stolen Girlfriends will appear in an upcoming print issue of Lucire.

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