Charmaine Reveley is not a
believer in the idea of trends: the label, she forecasts,
will evolve with her but stay true to its principles
It was a pleasure to see the progress of designer
Charmaine Reveley since our original interview in 2003. Now
selling to five stores, Reveley has been working from the Dunedin
Fashion Incubator, where she intends to remain till the end of the
Her autumn–winter ‘Settler’ collection celebrates
New Zealand history, with buttons one of her main design features.
Her button-off coat and merino high-neck jumper had considerable
quality when we checked these out at close range at the Incubator’s
premises. We enjoyed her use of lace on a pair of black pants—the
lace, cleverly, is held on by buttons and is removable. There is
a matching jacket with lace trim (that is not removable), grey sailor
pants and heavy skirts; her shorts featured contrasting pockets.
Her colour palette extended to a deep, rich berry
(a retro touch), contrasted with a powder blue that represented
the sea. Reveley wants her brand to target buyers who want quality
and interesting garments that are wearable in different ways; we
believe she will succeed. She is not a believer in the idea of "trends":
the label, she forecasts, will evolve with her but stay true to
Toni Darling’s collection, entitled ‘Love’s
Return’, was inspired by ‘prewar confidence’ and elegance.
The inspiration was that of women who took over
traditional men’s roles as they were empowered during the between-the-wars
period, particularly the 1930s.
The ribbons on many of Darling’s outfits painted
a patriotic, "rewarding" mood. Union Jacks appeared on
some, which have a connection with older New Zealanders. Royal Warrant
brooches and medals plus regal colours pointed to the same.
The visual techniques most employed here were
knots, ties and folds, as Darling showed one of the more delightful
collections at ID.