NZFW Announces New Talent Competition

Backstage at COOP, NZFW 2014


New Zealand Fashion Week (NZFW) has announced a new initiative which will see talented young creative New Zealanders given a foot up into the fashion industry.


NZFW is partnering with HITO – the Hair and Beauty Industry Training Organisation – to create the HITO Hot New Talent competition, which will see 15 aspiring hair stylists, makeup artists, fashion stylists and models given an opportunity to impress the fashion industry leaders while working at NZFW.


HITO as New Zealand’s hair and beauty industry training organisation, develops and implements New Zealand’s industry qualifications for the hair and beauty sectors, and manages the apprenticeship programmes for hairdressing, barbering and beauty in New Zealand. 


The partnership with NZFW will help HITO find the next generation of talented young creative minds, looking to make their way in these industries.  


“Creating opportunities for emerging talent in the fashion industry is important to NZFW. Every year we look for ways to support new designers and we created a similar competition in 2010,” said NZFW Managing Director Dame Pieter Stewart DNZM. 


“That competition was hugely successful with the winners all progressing onto careers in the hair, beauty and fashion industries. We’re excited to be creating those opportunities again and this time with the support of HITO, who are a fantastic organisation, we can ensure the winners are well supported into their chosen careers.”


In getting behind this talent search HITO CEO Erica Cumming said that this is a great opportunity to raise the profile of apprenticeship training and its potential for those who want to enter the industry.


“HITO is all about people learning on the job to gain qualifications and a career in hair and beauty. Partnering with Fashion Week shows what the opportunities are for them to learn and be part of the creative and dynamic industry that is celebrated at New Zealand Fashion Week”, she said.




·       NZFW and HITO are looking for five finalists from across NZ in each of the five categories of Hair/Barbering, Makeup Artist, Fashion Stylist, Female Model, Male Model


·       Entries open on Friday 3 July and close on Monday 27 July


·       Entries are open to up and coming talent. In the hair category this includes those who have less than two years in an apprenticeship or working in a salon, or those completely new to the industry. Those who have completed a full time course are not eligible.


·       Entrants in the other categories are open to anyone that has not been involved in New Zealand Fashion Week in any capacity i.e. if entering the model categories entrants must not have walked in a New Zealand Fashion Week Show, but may have worked as a dresser.


·      Entries are uploaded to the NZFW website at


·      A judging panel, including industry leaders and mentors appointed by HITO, and NZFW will select five finalists in each category.


·      Friday 31 July: The 25 finalists across all five categories will be announced on the NZFW Facebook page. The public will then vote for their favourite individual in each category.


·      Public voting will be open for two weeks from Friday 31 July – Friday 14 August and will determine the top three finalists in each category – 15 in total.


·      The top 15, as chosen by public vote and will assemble in Auckland for NZFW, being held from 24-30 August at the ANZ Viaduct Events Centre.


·      The top 15 will be showcased at the opening of NZFW on Monday 24 August where 450 guests, including fashion media, buyers, designers and industry heavyweights will cast the final vote to choose the winner in each category.


·      The winners from each category will then go on to create their own photoshoot as part of NZFW. 


·      All of the top 15 will work across key NZFW shows including Designer Selection and New Generation shows and following the event will be supported into internships and wherever possible apprenticeships, with industry mentors.




As part of the HITO Hot New Talent competition the top 15 finalists will be paired with an industry leader from their chosen profession and will work with them as an intern for at least three months following NZFW. 


NZFW Brand Manager Myken Stewart is hyped for what is going to be another game changing initiative for the fashion industry.


Image: COOP NZFW 2014New Zealand Fashion Week Gallery

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