Fresh Kiwi: The Best in Show From New Zealand Fashion Week

While everyone was soaking up the shows from London, New Zealand Fashion Week quietly had a little fanfare of its own. Being ardent Kiwi fans, we're thrilled to report on the sizeable dose of fresh and edgy fashion that showed at Auckland's gorgeous Viaduct Harbor. Here was the best of the bunch.
Kate Sylvester—Punky socialite
Held off-site in an inner-city warehouse, the Kate Sylvester show drew on an unusual source—a black-lipped 1980s Auckland socialite—to mix posh aesthetics with a punky attitude. We loved the heavy knits, lace bras, and dusky georgette dresses that were toughened up with zips, chains, and buttons.
Alexandra Owen—Show pony
Owen presented an equestrian-inspired collection with a few quirky twists like patched elbows and plaited leather scarves. New Zealand was a warm-up for her future showing at New York Fashion Week next February, so expect to see her making a global splash as the new Kiwi to watch.
Stolen Girlfriends Club—Appalachian dream
After the SGC show, everyone wished winter would come a hell of a lot faster. Their Welcome To Nowhere collection was brash, woodsy, and highly covetable. There were chunky cable knits (seen on everything from cardigans to hot-pants), blush tones, and fringe galore. The final moment of this Appalachian dream? A bare-chested male model, strutting through an enchanted crowd wearing a giant dream catcher.
Zambesi—Masters of the dark
This year, the iconic brand celebrated thirty successful years in the fashion biz. As always, the clothes were presented with a touch of drama. Against a cinematic Siberian backdrop, models strode out in inky suits, silk dresses, and latticework jackets. Not one to leave out the boys, Dayne Johnston's moody menswear was a standout, with interesting touches such as vinyl in the slim-fitting pants and sleeves.
Twenty-Seven Names—Tailoring for girls
Twenty-Seven Names proved once again that girls can dress like boys yet still look feminine. A mixed-bag of wearable cuffed pants, masculine blazers, and amazing shirts filled the collection, along with a strictly neutral color palette that seemed striking rather than staid.
Juliette Hogan—Ultra-feminine fantasy
Juliette Hogan confidently indulged in an ultra-feminine dress-up fantasy, offering a range of flirty dresses, snappy pants, and softly ruffled skirts. As she said, it's all "So Pretty it Hurts."
All photographs courtesy of Air New Zealand Fashion Week/Michael Ng

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