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October 17, 2016

Royal New Zealand Ballet’s ’17 line-up: triple Academy Award winner James Acheson designs for Romeo and Juliet

Lucire staff/0.01



Ross Brown

Top: The Royal New Zealand Ballet’s Carmen, premièring on February 16, 2017. Above: A new version of Romeo and Juliet, premièring on August 16.

Royal New Zealand Ballet artistic director Francesco Ventriglia has announced his second full season for the company, kicking off 2017 with Two Ballets by Roland Petit: Carmen with L’Arlésienne, premièring in Christchurch. Both have scores by Georges Bizet: Carmen was composed for the opéra comique in 1875 before Petit adapted it into a ballet in 1949; Petit created the ballet for L’Arlésienne in 1974, using the score originally composed for the play. They have been performed internationally, though not in New Zealand till the RNZB performances running from February 16 to April 1 in eight centres.
   The RNZB will perform three of Alexander Ekman’s works—Cacti, Tuplet and Episode 31—in a full programme from May 17 to June 15, in Wellington, Auckland, Napier, Christchurch, and Dunedin. For Cacti, the RNZB will be joined by the New Zealand String Quartet.
   The pièce de résistance for 2017 will be the Ryman Healthcare Season of Romeo and Juliet, in a new version by Ventriglia. Using the score by Sergei Prokofiev from 1935, the new work features set and costume design by three-time Academy Award winner James Acheson (The Last Emperor, Dangerous Liaisons, Restoration) working on his first ballet. Working with Auckland Live, the RNZB will offer a live audio description of this ballet for blind and visually impaired patrons on September 3. The season kicks off August 16 and runs till September 24, reaching nine centres.
   Ventriglia said in a release, ‘Not only does this bold programme celebrate international talents like France’s greatest-ever choreographer Roland Petit and the contemporary genius of Alexander Ekman, it’s also about creating great art here in New Zealand with a new version of Romeo and Juliet. The talented dancers of the RNZB and I look forward to bringing you another year of world class productions. See you at the theatre.’
   Executive director Frances Turner added, ‘It’s a big and beautiful year which will take the incredible artists of the RNZB around New Zealand for 70 performances in 16 cities and towns. We are proud to be taking the highest quality art to the widest possible audience.’
   The RNZB will help the New Zealand School of Dance, its official school, celebrate its 50th anniversary with a season in Wellington on November 24–5, while Tutus on Tour with Ballet in a Box return to the regions through the year.
   More information can be found at the RNZB website.

October 13, 2016

Natalie Chan releases her Savoir-Faire couture millinery collection

Lucire staff/0.55



Natalie Chan’s latest couture millinery collection, entitled Savoir-Faire, has been released, inspired by the designer’s ongoing exploration of the old world meeting the present day. The pieces are feminine and confident, with headwear shapes varying from headbands to button, pillbox and percher hats. The hats themselves have clear, structured shapes, though the embellishments (butterfly wings, silk lilies, leather chrysanthemums and silk organza folds) are deconstructed—yet another point of contrast and stylistic tension. Chan has chosen colours of ivory, black, French navy and nude, with scarlet red and rose pink highlights.
   As before, Chan continues to offer a bespoke service. All are made in the traditional, artisan way, with embellishments all constructed by hand.
   Natalie Chan celebrates its 15th anniversary this year, with humble beginnings above a florist’s boutique in 2001. Today, her boutique is located at 229 Parnell Road, Parnell, Auckland, New Zealand. Her brand includes bridal wear, an extension she made in 2012, inspired by her own wedding and discovering that she had her own take on modern wedding dress design. Design and production take place above the Parnell boutique. The full collection can be tried on at the boutique, and personalized viewings are available.


September 30, 2016

Hennes & Mauritz opens first store in Auckland, New Zealand, with celebrity launch

Lucire staff/11.17




Chris Park

Hennes & Mauritz held a press launch for its first New Zealand retail store at Sylvia Park, Auckland, on Thursday—and as the New Zealand-headquartered publication with the longest history of covering the Swedish retailer, we were on the scene.
   H&M didn’t take this launch lightly. In anticipation of the official October 1 launch, they rolled out the red carpet, metaphorically and literally, for an eclectic bunch of media, photographers, bloggers, influencers and the usual Auckland celebrity crowd. It was an incredibly well run event.
   Those spotted among the 800-plus attendees included Jaime Ridge, Maia Cotton, Jerome Kaino and Maria Tutaia, and Colin Mathura-Jeffree.
   In keeping with international standards, the H&M store is a two-storey complex, occupying a huge floor space, with separate sections for men’s, women’s and children’s wear. Unfortunately they didn’t bring in an H&M Home, which, with the absence of Ikea, would probably have done incredibly well in New Zealand.
   The concept of the launch event was to have a “luxury H&M experience”, where we were led down the red carpet, given a trademark grey mesh shopping bag, and free reign to buy any of the items at prices specially discounted for the launch. In addition to this, we were treated to bubbles on arrival, followed by bars on each of the floors each making a different cocktail, with canapés floating around the whole night.
   Gracie Taylor, Jupiter Project, Kings and General Lee, and Dan Aux were DJing on the ground floor.
   In anticipation for the crowds on Saturday (when the store is open to the public), H&M flew in staff from Australia and elsewhere to support the New Zealand-based crew and to provide training.
   Mino Kim, one quarter of the well-known New Zealand street style blog Foureyes, is the store manager, so the rest of the Foureyes team were there to provide emotional support and to do a bit of shopping as well.
   Just as there is a space for haute couture, there is equally a space for fast fashion. H&M built its global fashion empire through making basic, affordable clothing which were durable and the store in New Zealand was no exception. It remains to be seen how H&M’s expansion in the New Zealand market will affect other clothing retailers who operate in the same space and price brackets.
   Perhaps in anticipation of the launch, there have been some critical coverage of H&M being implicated in using child labour and outsourcing its production work to countries where workers are underpaid and exploited. However, it is worth noting that H&M has been one of the more proactive clothing companies when it comes to upholding workers’ rights in comparison to many other comparable brands who already have retail operations in New Zealand, including Glassons, Industrie and Forever 21.
   My understanding is that H&M intends to monitor how the flagship store in Sylvia Park goes before considering whether to open additional stores in other centres around New Zealand.
   I anticipate that for those in Auckland at least, H&M will become the go-to place particularly for basics or cheap and cheerful accessories.—Chris Park, Guest Contributor




Chris Park




Courtesy Mango


Chris Park


Courtesy Mango


Chris Park





Courtesy Mango











Chris Park






Geoff Hedley; courtesy Mango


Chris Park

August 24, 2016

Linden Leaves enters China staying true to its principles, without using animal-testing procedures

Lucire staff/12.46

Linden Leaves has been trying to solve the problem of entry into the Chinese market for some time. To sell in China, conventional wisdom was that animal testing is required, and when Lucire approached experts in China, they found no way round it. This was in spite of a free-trade agreement between New Zealand and the People’s Republic of China—it was accepted that all would have to undergo the same procedure.
   The good news, announced this month, is that Linden Leaves has, after some persistence, found a way to enter China without animal testing, thereby staying true to its ethos. The company has managed to secure exclusive authorization by the Chinese government.
   Founder Brigit Blair says, ‘I feel so proud that we did not bend our own company ethics and policy for the greater lure of the Chinese dollar due to their animal testing policy. It is so exciting that we have managed to enter the market in a way that means we are able to stay true to what we stand for, not only as a company, but also as a cruelty-free nation.’
   Linden Leaves’ skin care and body care ranges are now stocked at Shanghai’s largest Duty Free Downtown store, with over 2,000 people attending the opening event of its new counter, with further forays into China, through domestic stores and Duty Free stores, planned.

August 23, 2016

H&M’s New Zealand store will be the first to see the Kenzo × H&M collection

Bhavana Bhim/1.45




Oliver Hadlee Pearch

H&M will retail the Kenzo × H&M collaboration announced last month, with the line joining its Sylvia Park store on November 3. With the time difference, this means the New Zealand store is the first to carry the line.
   Since joining Kenzo in 2011, Carol Lim and Humberto Leon have set their own fashion agenda with collections full of bold colours and vivid prints, revealed through high-impact shows, artist collaborations and creative digital campaigns. Global influences and traditions are remixed and fused with the energy of the street, resulting in collections that are both inspirational and accessible to their fans around the world. At Kenzo, fashion expresses freedom, joy and individuality for all.
   â€˜We can’t wait to share with everyone the world of Kenzo × H&M, with all of its creativity, fun and love of fashion,’ said Ann-Sofie Johansson, creative adviser at H&M.
   Last month, the brand revealed the four first looks from the collaboration which combine vivid personalities and bright prints of the clothing for a fun atmosphere.
   Amy Sall, a student activist based in New York and founder of SUNU: Journal of African Affairs, Critical Thought & Æsthetics is photographed beside Juliana Huxtable, a 28 year old artist, poet and DJ also based in New York, wearing tiger-print jerseys, roll-neck tops and matching high-waisted leggings. They also wear black leather gloves containing a pink logo print and jacquard knitted tiger-sock shaft boots.
   The second look shows the 19-year-old musician and performance artist based in Paris, Oko Ebombo. He wears a parka with a removable printed collar, block colour tiger-print jeans, plus padded flip-flops with tabi socks. Ebombo also wears a tiger-printed cap with an attached scarf, a printed woven scarf and the tiger-printed cross-body bag.
   The third look shows Isamaya French, a make-up artist based in London, part of the London-based collective, Theo Adams Company. She wears an oversized leather jacket with pink faux shearling lining, with a matching tiger print jersey roll-neck top, and high-waisted leggings.
   The final look is revealed on Anna of the North, a 25-year-old Norwegian musician who gained global attention earlier during the year with her track ‘The Dreamers’. She wears a fresh interpretation by Kenzo’s creative directors, of an iconic design by founder Kenzo Takada: a short folkloric ribbon dress featuring various prints from the collection.
   â€˜With this collaboration with H&M we want to think big, push the boundaries and bring the new energy of Kenzo to everyone around the world,’ say Lim and Leon.—Bhavana Bhim


Oliver Hadlee Pearch

August 19, 2016

Chanel opens first New Zealand Fragrance and Beauty boutique at historic Britomart Building in Auckland

Bhavana Bhim/6.30

Chanel yesterday opened its first Fragrance & Beauty boutique in Auckland. The store is located in the historic Britomart Building and marks the 12th Fragrance and Beauty boutique opening across Australia and New Zealand collectively.
   Chanel have maintained the original 1900s brickwork building, with its traditional kauri timber floors. Combined with the contemporary products, customers are treated to a stylish boutique experience.
   Upon entering the boutique, customers are invited to discover the latest Chanel make-up creations as well as a skin care bar. Along with fragrance, Chanel is delighted to début a new range of eyewear to New Zealand customers. The eyewear salon will present a comprehensive collection of Chanel sunglasses, including the classic codes of the house—white camellias, pearls, tweed and interlaced chains. Beauty and fashion are combined in the boutique, giving clients the opportunity to select the latest eyewear shape, complementing their face and make-up look.
   David Blakeley, managing director of Chanel Australia and New Zealand, said, ‘The opening of the first boutique in New Zealand is a momentous occasion for Chanel. We are able to deliver an immersive, service orientated experience to our clients in a retail environment that we have specially created to showcase our fragrance, beauty and fashion eyewear offerings together in a new and very exciting Chanel way.’—Bhavana Bhim

Miss Universe New Zealand beauty secrets: how to look like a contestant

Bhavana Bhim/2.24




Alan Raga/www.alanraga.com

Above: Semifinalist Mia Hofsteede and finalists Seresa Lapaz and Elizabeth Lorimer with some of the products Miss Universe New Zealand contestants received.

Have you ever wanted to embody the flair and confidence of a Miss Universe contestant? Well now you can as we have access to some of the beauty products given to the 2016 New Zealand semi-finalists. The finalists, meanwhile, enjoyed the products while on retreat and they’ll be using them as they near the Grand Final on September 3 at Auckland’s Skycity Theatre. All the stress and drama of pageants need not be fretted over when you are gifted with a range of products to rejuvenate the body and the soul.
   Of course all the smiling and speaking will eventually dry out your mouth, so it makes sense to use the Living Nature Lip Hydrator. It is an advanced lip balm in a stick to make it practical and easy to apply to the lips. The Lip Hydrator contains the active ingredient of manuka honey, along with an infusion of  butters and oils to deeply hydrate and condition the lips while mica gives lips a healthy sheen, along with natural sun protection. If you want universal nourishment then give the lip hydrator a go.
   Do you desire the luscious locks of the contestants? Then why not try the Juuce Reviva Cream, in Argan Shimmer and Knot Knotty. These products are bound to nourish the scalp and give your hair some flair.
   The skin of a contestant needs to be primed and ready for the cameras, so it makes sense for them to use the Body Shop’s Pink Grapefruit Body Lotion (60 ml). It is light and easily absorbed into the skin, with a zesty citrus scent to revitalize the senses.
   They also received products from the Samala Cosmetics line, from one of New Zealand’s most respected make-up artists and educators, Samala Robinson, bottles of 1Above—the Flight Drink, which helped finalists stay refreshed on their return flight to the Philippines for their retreat, and coconut water from UFC Refresh, a natural drink that helps keep skin looking good from the inside.
   They relax and unwind with Lipidol oils, designed to purify the skin with natural herbs. After a hard day’s work, it makes sense for the girls to use Lipidol products.
   There you have it, the secret to looking good. When in doubt give these products a go to give yourself a glamour boost.—Bhavana Bhim






Alan Raga/www.alanraga.com


Casey Pattinson

Above: Semifinalist Mia Hofsteede and Casey Pattinson, and finalists Tania Dawson, Seresa Lapaz, Elizabeth Lorimer with some of the products Miss Universe New Zealand contestants received.

August 17, 2016

H&M opens first store in New Zealand in October 2016

Lucire staff/13.13

International Swedish retailer, Hennes & Mauritz, will open in New Zealand on October 1.
   The new store will be located at Sylvia Park, Auckland, and span two storeys and 2,300 m². The new store will have men, women, youth and children’s apparel and accessories. The H&M Studio collection for autumn–winter 2016–17 (above) will appear at the store, as well as the Modern Essentials by David Beckham collection.
   â€˜We are excited to be making progress on our arrival in New Zealand and look forward to welcoming customers through the doors of H&M at Sylvia Park on the 1st of October,’ said Hans Andersson, Country Manager for H&M Australia and New Zealand in a release.
   The store will open at 10 a.m. on October 1. Regular hours are 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. all days, except for Thursday and Friday, when it will close at 9 p.m.
   Lucire has been covering the growth of the retailer since 1998, and noted its pioneering programmes in corporate social responsibility and designer collaborations.

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