As we draw closer to the end of what has been a great week of New Zealand Fashion, Collections #4 was an amazing showcase of crowd pleasers such as Huffer, Ruby and Workshop but we also got to take a closer look at other promising New Zealand designers such Carlson and Pearl.
My winter wish-list has become quite lengthy after this week and with only one more show to go I’m making sure I have room to add more.
Night Four: Helen Cherry, Workshop, Ruby, Sable & Minx and Brady, Huffer, Carlson, Pearl, Lonely Hearts, Sylvester by Kate Sylvester
To start the show Helen Cherry opened with a sleek combination of a man-style camel pant, teamed back with a military shirt and a beautiful rabbit fur jacket, such uncomplicated but elegant styling.
While the initial colour palette was autumn warmth, we soon saw an injection of bright, with a white based print of blues, and greens off set against beautiful reds.
Simplistic blacks also featured – a belted black sleeveless pantsuit, timeless and again elegant.
WORKSHOP was up next and in a short timeframe we were shown a great scope of what’s on offer. Denim options (of course) came in the form slim leg jeans teamed effortlessly with a navy coat, easy dressing with loads of style!
Another sweet piece was a mid-indigo sleeved denim dress, (fabric also shared with a shirt in the collection). Due to the lighter weight denim it was soft with natural movement.
I was very pleased to see a leather story full of sexy toughness, from a leather on leather biker ensemble, of skinny pants and jacket to a leather dress, which was leather at the front with a fabric back; very sleek.
Of course I can’t leave out the guys here; we got a taste of camoflage, a excellent winter print. Some great leather pieces feautured, a fabric and leather two button blazer (grey fabric front and back, with leather sleeves) was a favourite and like we saw with the women’s collection, easy dressing with loads of style.
WORKSHOP denim is clean – it’s not overly treated or processed but simple touches like tonal leather back pockets or patches on the front make the denim sophisticated and edgy, I know where I’m going for my next pair of jeans.
A crowd pleaser at fashion events is always RUBY. Texture compliments colour throughout the collection one great example is a snugly angora sweater and bold yellow wrap skirt.
I’ve also now developed a soft spot for a bright white and black print, featured in a jean and a longer length asymmetrical hem dress, the print is fresh, vibrant and translates with the pieces it’s been developed into perfectly.
The collection also hints at a futuristic feel, particularly in a party dress with a metallic bodice, toned down with a soft ballerina-type skirt, that perfect party piece with a point of difference.
Key shapes are created with layers and wrapping and it’s in these design features that make RUBY such a fun and feminine label.
Soft fabrics in autumn colours introduce the Sable & Minx show. A velvet skirt in a striking bronze colour was a wonderful way to present this fabric, subtly toned back with a soft toffee blouse, this oozed conservative, glam. Warmth continued to shine throughout – a highlight print had an oriental feel, encompassing these tones beautifully.
We also got a taste of Brady, who's colours were vibrant in jewel tones. A piece to note was an aubergine dress. Worn off the shoulder, this somewhat minimal piece is tricked up with woven/crotchet panel through the side of the sleeves. An easy wear shape, this is the ideal piece for all those winter outings.
Sable & Minx Brady
HUFFER was up next – And while there was no Aja Rock jumping out of a cake it still proved to be a riveting watch.
For the Huffer girl this winter there is a strong sense of military styling, dresses reminiscent of pinafore's are sweetend up by soft printed fabrics and full and “pretty” skirts were dressed down with knitwear and beanies to create the HUFFER signature of laidback easy dressing.
For the guys a hint of preppy continues throughout. A two tone navy and maroon bomber jacket a standout. A pair of camel skinny jeans also caught my eye. While girls can wear coloured jeans in every shade, the market is somewhat limited for those guys looking for an alternative. Nice one Huffer!
I was definitely wowed by the next show from CARLSON. A striking orange lace dress was the perfect contrast against a mushroom coat. And again this colour was paired back with navy and black. The perfect colour to brighten a winter day!
There was also a touch of movie star glam, with a silvery lace gown finishing the show. Simply stunning; a piece that would not be out of place on the Hollywood red carpet.
Pearl followed next with easy smart casual dressing. Printed tunics over slim pants display uncomplicated styling. A standout was a beautifully tailored black and white check coat.
There was a strong evening wear component, featuring bare shoulders, fluid fabrics which draped beautifully with a hint of embellishment.
A playful striped dress opened the Lonely Hearts show, and while the shape is one which is very popular, the addition of a racer back adds a sporty element. This shape made another appearance in the show, this time in a delightful navy spot.
This racer back was also translated into a knit body con dress. Slip dresses in two lengths although quite simple, are the perfect wardrobe essential when layered back with knitwear and jackets.
Last on the runway to conclude Collections #4 was Sylvester by Kate Sylvester, an array of prints, textures and colours. Stripes also feature and this range shows how you can easily mix and match with both.
While the fabrics have a vintage and mature feel about them, they appear in youthful shapes. It’s great to see jumpsuits and playsuits.
This really is a versatile collection which could be easily incorporated into any day-to-day wardrobe.
Sylvester by Kate Sylvester
All imagery: Will Seal.