As Wellington gears up to Africa Day this Saturday, with a 12-hour celebration at the Wellington Town Hall beginning at 11.30 a.m., thereâs a distinctively non-African name behind the scenes doing the make-up for the fashion show on the day, as well as the smaller Taste of Africa event at Te Papa from 6 p.m. tonight (May 23).
Kareen D. Holland, whose business KD One recently opened at Morrison Kent House on The Terrace, is applying her extensive experience in film make-up to the community event.
KD Oneâs natural skin care and cosmetics stemmed from Hollandâs years in film, working with such luminaries as Wetaâs Sir Richard Taylor.
Working at Taste of Africa and Africa Day is Hollandâs way of giving back to the community, something she was keen to do ever since KD One opened last month.
Africa Day showcases African culture through dance, music, arts, crafts and cuisine. It is the first major cultural event for African communities in Wellington.
KD One was mentored by Lucire publisher Jack Yan as part of his work with Business Mentors New Zealand.
Above From Starfishâs heyday: the summer 2010â11 collection, Free Radical.
The companies behind Starfish have appointed liquidators, according to public notices placed in metropolitan newspapers today.
Both Starfish Retail Ltd. and Starfish Wholesale Ltd. went into liquidation as of May 8, with creditors expected to make their claims with Price Waterhouse Coopers in Wellington, New Zealand by June 12.
Starfish has had a long history in Wellington, and is one of the labels most closely identified with the city. Founded by sisters Laurie and Miriam Foon, initially selling out of the boot of their car, the company soon became known for its commitment to corporate social responsibility and the environment. Laurie Foon was Lucireâs first feature interviewee in 1997, at a time when Starfish was behind a movement to stop the city motorway bypass. It was one of many social causes that the company stood behind in its 20-year history.
The companies that are in liquidation now were incorporated the year after, though the label itself started in 1993.
Starfish also launched a more premium label, Laurie Foon, in the 2000s.
Its fashion consistently ranked among this magazine’s picks for each season, and was a highlight of New Zealand Fashion Week for Lucire fashion editor Sopheak Seng.
Alongside Untouched World, Starfish was highlighted in Summer Rayne Oakes’s international guide to eco-fashion, Style, Naturally.
Throughout its history, Starfish remained passionate about the environment and stayed true to its ethos. On principle, it resisted offshore manufacturing when many of its rivals opted for cheap labour.
Starfish’s liquidation follows the closure of long-time label Ashley Fogel and another highly regarded Wellington brand, Alexandra Owen.
Those of you using Chrome, and I understand some of you using Firefox, were unable to access this website because of Google misidentifying it as distributing malware.
As those who know this publication realize, Lucire would never do that and that readers should ignore such warnings.
What I can tell you is that on Saturday morning, New Zealand time, we were hacked. Hackers put code in to our ad server and, curiously, the code has Google’s name all over it. I haven’t had confirmation of this, but it could be Google Adsense code. I’ve posted the code at this page and you can view it in a screen shot here. That code linked to another site that they hacked, which did distribute malware unknowingly.
We found this, and deleted all the injected code as soon as possibleâin our case, this took place within hours. We did this manually, literally going through every ad entry on our server. After a few more hours, our web experts had deleted every change the hackers made to our advertising server back-end, and locked it down. And, rightly, Google cleared our ad server of any problems.
Strangely, however, Google refused to clear any site that used our ad server, even though none of them were distributing any malware, or linked to any site distributing malware. Google labelled all of them ‘attack sites’. This is, of course, highly damaging to our reputation. For days, Google continued to misidentify clean code linking to a clean ad server as malicious. The great irony is that a lot of this clean code links to Google’s own Doubleclick banners.
It’s sad to say, but this is typical of our experience of Google. Once I helped a friend get his blog back but instead of the 48 hours Google promised, it took six months of a lot of arguing and the intervention of Blogger’s product manager. We’ve uncovered privacy blunders with its advertising network on behalf of netizens. If you were an Iphone user who opted out of Safari’s tracking, Google found a way around it, so we know it has some really strange ideas of what constitutes malware (if they engage in it, it’s OK). Their detection systems should be better, and people expect them to be excellent because it’s a multi-million-dollar firm. Unfortunately, this experience reminds us that they aren’t perfect, and somewhat hypocriticalâand that honest folks can get hurt sometimes.
We even went to Google Plus to tell readers, but we discovered today that that status vanished from people’s feeds and from our Google Plus page (though we can still see it). It appears that you aren’t allowed to criticize Google on Google Plus.
I wouldn’t be publishing a statement about this if I didn’t have my facts straight. Today, out of frustration, I went to a forum dealing with badware, called Badware Busters. An expert in the area, Dr Anirban Banerjee, told me that Google can make these mistakes. Even though you have done everything and cleaned up your sites, Google can keep identifying a clean site as malicious. He suggests we remove all our ad server code from our websites for a few days, get the all-clear, and then put things back to normal. We followed that advice today, and I hope that the block will be lifted shortly. [PS.: After a manual review, StopBadware.org cleared Lucire after this post was originally published.]
Or, as I said on my blog today: ‘there may be a drunk driver swerving left and right at the wheel of the Google truck, so itâs your job to make sure that you build a nice road in front for them, rather than insist that they clean up their act and stay on the road.’
We apologize to readers for any inconvenience, especially if you were put off by the false warnings. Rest assured that apart from a brief moment on Saturday morning, this site is secure and your surfing would not have resulted in any harm to your computers. We surf it, too, and we see the same version of the site as you do, so we want things to work properly. We might not be as big as Google, but we do have good systems, and our readers’ best interests at heart.âJack Yan, Publisher
You can follow a bit more about this saga as it unfolded on Jack Yan’s blog.
Lucire has had a private preview of Mardle’s springâsummer 2013â14 collection, Bisou, Bisou. And to show that Mardle is the thinking woman’s choice for stylish staples, each of the outfits is named after a Kiss song.
Designer Shiana Weir has put the emphasis more on evolution, rather than revolution, given her feedback from her customers. She recognizes that unlike Europe and the US, New Zealand customers tend not to favour huge changes between seasons.
Characteristic of the collection is the X panel, either through using complementary fabrics on the garment. Similarly, Mardle has used a script X on a print, signalling the custom of signing kisses with an x.
The I Stole Your Love relaxed T blends Modal and polyester, and brings in a light, sheer look for springâsummer. We also liked her Nothing to Lose jacket, with removable shoulder pads that are held in place inside the garment with Velcro. The Shock Me mini-skirt has a distinctive black-and-white pattern, while the Crazy Crazy Nights dress has sequinned sleeves and a nice blush and gold Lurex finish. The Mardle Lizzie leather belt completes the outfits. Weir has also a colour palette that includes black-and-white, gold, and gun-metal grey.
The labels proudly bear the Mardle logo and ‘Made in New Zealand’, which will have plenty of appeal to its Kiwi customers. Mardle can be found online at www.mardle.co.nz, with its stockists (including Dunedin’s Salisbury Boutique and Havelock North’s Salsa) listed here.âJack Yan, Publisher
Today, Lucire has come full circle. One of the earliest stories on the web for our group was on the Renault Clioâs Nicole and Papa campaign, created in the early 1990s by Publicis. The Clio, which was the first Renault to hit the best sellersâ lists consistently in the UK, was sold with a cheeky campaign featuring two charactersâNicole, a young French lass, and Papa, obviously, her father. Those were the only two words uttered in the majority of the commercials, with the exceptions of âMamanâ and âBobâ, the final referring to comedian Bob Mortimer.
The last Nicole and Papa TVC, released when the Clio II was launched in 1998, saw Nicole finally walk down the aisle, about to marry Vic Reeves (a.k.a. Jim Moir) when she finally decides, at the last minute, to run off with Bob Mortimer instead.
Itâs hard to believe that Nicole and Papa entered the British consciousness 20 years ago, in a series which also marketed French flair and the belief that the French have a better lifestyle than the British.
The Clio is still with us, but itâs much larger than before. Now on its fourth incarnation, the latest Clio is more expressive and sporty in looks, thanks to the work of Laurens van den Acker. Itâs on the previous modelâs platform, albeit heavily revised, and thatâs a good thing. In the stories we did on the Clioâboth publisher Jack Yan and travel editor Stanley Moss took Clio 3s around France and New Zealandâwe found it one of the most capable superminis, a small car with a big-car feel. In fact, we found it better for cruising New Zealandâs South Island than the Holden Commodore, which we tried around the same time.
Clio IV features an 899 cmÂł, three-cylinder engine, but itâs turbocharged, developing more than 90 PSâthose are the sorts of eco-friendly, yet powerful, specs that you can expect from the French these days. Renault claims a combined 88Â·3 mpg from the Energy dCi 90 engine. Archrival Peugeot similarly has three-cylinder units for its 208, the Clioâs closest rival at home, though the entry-level engine here is actually a 1Â·1 four which develops 75 PS. An RS model appears in 2013, getting 200 PS from a turbocharged 1Â·6, continuing the tradition of pocket rockets from ClioâLucire photographer Doug Rimington once owned a Clio RS 182, which proved to be an able and taut sports hatch.
The great thing is that Clio IV has the looks to match its âva-va-voomâ nature. The new modelâs styling conveys everything that Nicole and Papa tried to do: that when you get a Clio, youâre getting a dose of French flair. But wait, thereâs more: âva va voomâ includes a sense of passion, something which van den Ackerâs styling attempts to do. This isnât a dull little hatch in the domestic appliance mould: Clio IV is emotive, and even sexy. Theyâre not words you tend to hear in the B-segment.
To show just what Renault means, the company has come up with two videos, one for unsuspecting male test drivers who come to a corner and are surprised at what happens when the âva va voomâ button is pressed, and the other for female test drivers.
And to bring things full circle, Nicole and Papa make an appearance, uttering the lines that made them famous. It does seem that the years have not been kind to Nicole and Bob, because thereâs no sign of Mortimer, as Nicole has found herself a new man.
But isnât that just what we expected?
Find out more from or book a test drive at the Renault website. Renault’s Twitter account can be found here, and its Facebook here.
Wellington artists Tai and Kaaterina Kerekere have just opened their latest exhibition, My Culture Is Not a Trend, at Thistle Hall, on the corner of Cuba and Arthur Streets in New Zealand’s capital city.
The couple’s paintings take pride of place, expressing personal aspects of Māoridom, culture, womanhood, family, and identity, relevant not only to a Māori audience but to any in living in New Zealand.
Of greater interest to Lucire readers, however, is the launch of their jewellery line. KE Design, as the Kerekeres’ company is called, has launched what it calls The Heritage Collection 2013, which features unique hand-crafted jewellery featuring simple motifs founded on, as the name suggests, their heritage and whakapapa. The designs are clear, eye-catching and modern, and have an internationalist flavour while proudly steeped in New Zealand’s own culture. Prices range from a very reasonable NZ$100 for earrings to NZ$400 for a pendant set in silver and garnet.
The Kerekeres, no strangers to exhibiting their art internationally, are showing in Hawaiâi in January 2014, and will launch another jewellery collection there. They will also take 33 works of art to the 50th US state. My Culture Is Not a Trend runs from March 27 to 31 at Thistle Hall, open 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. KE Design can be found at kedesign.co.nz, with the site developed by Adrian Owen of SweetChilli, and on Facebook at facebook.com/rina.taiart.
Another New Zealand artist showing abroad is Darryn George, of Ngāpuhi descent, who has been invited to the Biennale di Venezia, showing at the Palazzo Bembo. The Christchurch-born artist recently gave a talk at Wellington’s CaffĂš L’AffarĂš about his plans to transform room 15 into a Wharenui-like space with highly reflective black surfaces, with the concept based around filing cabinets representing the lives lost in the 2011 Christchurch earthquake.
The work, consisting of 3,510 mm-high MDF boards painted with high-gloss automotive paints, is being made in New Zealand and will be shipped to Venezia, but George requires help to raise the funds to get to the Biennale. An impression of what the finished work will look like is shown below.