Former Lucire stylist Illya Knight’s accessory brand, G.O.N.T. (God of Nocturnal Thunder) is something new and exciting to get behind. G.O.N.T. aims to enhance personal style and individuality through their edgy jewellery, menswear, womenswear, footwear and bags. Inspired by nature, power and strength, this new label delves into the concepts of glamour and power. Their eclectic pieces each make an original statement.
Based in New York, G.O.N.T. is a start-up company which is constantly growing, where new pieces are being added online daily. Knight aims to create garments able to be flaunted in the day-to-day wardrobe where functionality meets quality and style.
In looking through G.O.N.T.âs promotional imagery, what really stood out for me are the artistic photography and the luxurious-looking leather. The most distinctive piece is the ski-boot-style men’s leather boots. Opening at the sides, I have never seen anything like them. Their originality, incorporating ski-sporty with grungy, is something to be valued as mixing elements is not an easy task. Here at Lucire we also highly rate his rugged denim with its vibrant colours and creased exterior. Last but not least the G.O.N.T. leather mailbox bag is both luxe and grungy, I wouldn’t mind one if this myself! Check out G.O.N.T. for yourself at thegont.tumblr.com.âAnna Deans
While some designers strive to create an ideal vision of the perfect female customer, others choose to let their customer use fashion to define their own definition of perfection. Annah Stretton, now easing her way into to the US and other countries’ markets via her jaunty online boutiques, fits the second category and does it with the flair of one of her famously fitted jackets. I discovered this on my 2010 visit to Wellington when in town to cover the Cocktail World Cup (of 42 Below vodka notoriety).
Soon after I purchased my first Annah-designed investment-piece jacket (which still turns fashionista heads here in LA three years on), Lucire publisher Jack Yan filled me in on her other accomplishments in publishing and public speaking. In 2013, she succeeded in getting my attention again, and not just because of all of the curve flattering frocks and expanded number of shops. Shortly after I arrived in Wellington, on the heels of covering the Food and Wine Classic (FAWK) in Hawke’s Bay, a cartoon incarnation of Annah peeked up at me from one of the stacks at the Lucire offices. Rock the Boat (her third effort), content-wise, is focused on a core readership of success-driven New Zealand women. The business leaders and movers-and-shakers, therefore, will be more recognizable to that group. However, from the perspective of an outsider (an American woman) looking in, this book is still a fun read with a lot of very positive messages and life lessons. Although it is obvious why she’s billed as the New Zealand answer to Oprah, one has to appreciate that she’s made sure her own larger-than-life persona does not overshadow the input and impact made by her “guest stars” (including the equally vibrant Cuisine publisher Ray McVinnie, who MCed several FAWK events, as well as World of Wearable Art founder Dame Suzie Moncrieff, and Saatchi & Saatchi CEO Kevin Roberts). This, in turn, turns readers not familiar with New Zealand personality, culture and industry to read on, learn and be genuinely inspired.
From a design standpoint, Rock the Boat, like her springâsummer 2013â14 collection of frocks, tempts a reader to pick it up and try some things on for size. Though ĂŠsthetically some of this year’s dresses and this year’s book chapters may be a little too busy visually, other visually appealing chapters will fit and feel just right for an individual reader. Then again, that’s the beauty of the new generation of eclectic, self-help and motivational books aiming for a wide readership. Not every idea or message will be a fit, but chances are if you shop aroundâespecially on this Stretton-led cruiseâyou will get some divine inspiration when charting your own course.âElyse Glickman, US West Coast Editor
Although publicized at a ceremony in Auckland last night, DHL has lifted the embargo tonight to announce that Commoners has won its Fashion Export Scholarship.
In a release, Jae Mills, Commoners’ designer, said, ‘The DHL export scholarship is very important to us as we see it as an opportunity to connect internationally. We are currently focused on growing our brand in the Australian market. This will be our focus for the next one to two years.
âWe have chosen this market as our main export market as we feel a strong connect with the culture and our brand has been received really well over the past six months. Also from a logistical perspective we share the same seasons so in these early stages, production and distribution can be easily managed. Once we have the right structure within our business we can look at northern hemisphere business in the future.’
Fay Nwokobia, Head of Asia-Pacific at www.my-wardrobe.com, said, ‘The DHL Express Fashion Export Scholarship assists us in identifying new talent out of New Zealand, and we felt that the calibre of entries was outstanding. As a result, weâre interested in starting a conversation with not only Commoners, who were the worthy scholarship recipient, but also the other two finalists Blak and Meadowlark.’
The competition was judged by Margi Robertson (Nom D), John Kelly (Max Fashions), Megan Wildermoth (DHL) and Paul Blomfield (FINZ).
Robertson noted that Commoners was ‘brave. Theyâve stuck to their guns in terms of their design ĂŠsthetic, which takes a lot of guts. They also have a strong, strategic marketing campaign which is very specific and reflects the clothes well.’
Commoners receives NZ$10,000 worth of international freight and a meeting with buyers from www.my-wardrobe.com. The prize also includes coaching in freight and logistics, a tailored export mentoring package, and a yearâs FINZ membership.
Bunteâs annual New Faces Award Fashion during DĂŒsseldorf Fashion Week has seen some very deserving winners in fashion, accessories and shoes.
In the Best Fashion Label category, Achtland, a Berlin label by Oliver LĂŒhr and Thomas Bentz, took the honours. They were awarded red panther statuettes and prize money of âŹ10,000.
Tom Zauke won in the Best Accessories Label category. Marion Henry, on the jury, said, ‘The pieces by Tom Zauke are very reminiscent of works of art. They are both visionary and sustainable.’
Best Shoe Design went to Joachim van Kann for his innovative shoe designs, and took home a cash prize of âŹ5,000.
The jury also included Eickhoff owner Susanne Asbrand-Eickhoff, Fashion Net DĂŒsseldorf’s Wolfgang Johannes Hein and Bunte editor-in-chief Patricia Riekel.
Furniture company Kare Design partnered with Bunte. Kare created a space in an Ibiza style, furnished with floor cushions, benches and lanterns, at which Bunte honoured the best up-and-coming designers.
Celebrities and guests attending included Kriemhild Siegel, Alexandra Polzin, Julia SchĂ¶nhofen, Olivia SchĂ¶nhofen, Nazan Eckes, Martin Obermeyr, Manuel Cortez, Frauke Ludowig, Guido Maria Kretschmer, Kena Amoa, Kai Ebel and Milla Wiegand, Thomas Rath, Sandro Rath, Jasmin Schwiers, Thomas Hayo and Jorge Gonzalez, Luca Gadjus, Aleksandra Bechtel, Franziska Knuppe, and Liz Baffoe.
DĂŒsseldorf Fashion Week sees some 1,000 guests, including celebrities, and was considered by Kare to be an opportunity to show its trend-setting style. Bunte holds the awards annually.