The calibre of the collections shown at Rookie 2015 was proof once again that the future of New Zealand fashion is in good hands. Here we share our top five standouts…
Auckland University of Technology’s annual graduate fashion show is an end-of-year calendar highlight not only for fashion media, but for key fashion industry players looking to recruit talent (and perhaps check out the fresh competition!) for the coming year.
The ultimate capsule wardrobe
A solution to every woman’s baggage allowance woes, Lauren Kerslake’s collection of mix-and-match garments was designed to be “packed up and taken all over the world” with ease. Featuring linen smocks styled over cuffed trousers, and voluminous midi skirts paired with sweatshirts, crisp tanks and fine knits, all in a user-friendly palette of black, white, grey, and dusty pink, the range was utterly fuss-free without feeling institutional. Perfect for traveling, yes, but a collection that also screams staycation.
The Studio 54 uniform
Inspired by the music of David Bowie, Rose Ackland’s sequin-heavy collection of wide-legged jumpsuits and slinky, floor-length gowns was all about high glamour and low necklines. Fit for a 70s disco queen, but kept out of costume territory thanks to clean, contemporary styling, no runway offering was more Christmas party appropriate (conservative dressers need not apply).
The summer rebrand
With her collection of multi-tiered, ruched white dresses, Ruby Davison wanted to encapsulate society’s nostalgia for a romanticised and under-sexualised youth. Drawing heavily from The Virgin Suicides and Picnic at Hanging Rock, the aesthetic might have been whimsical but the cuts and fabrics used were oh-so-wearable. Every single garment would make the perfect addition to a summer wardrobe.
The nouveau bogan
Jessie-Lee Radford’s take on 80s bogan culture made use of staples like mesh, denim, and leather in new and interesting ways. Motorcycle jackets had floor-length fringing; scraps of denim were turned into patchwork jeans; denim torn into strips was woven into vests; Mongolian fur trims gave hard-wearing suede pieces a softer edge; and muddy coloured tie-dye was painterly perfection on silken fabrics (that you won’t want anywhere near your neighbour’s mildewy lawn furniture).
The one to watch
The fantastical creations that Tia Feng sent down the runway told the story of a young girl “traveling to alternate worlds and bringing a piece of each home with her.” They also told the story of a young designer fresh from a stint interning at Rodarte, where she clearly picked up a few notes on working with volume and texture. Which is not to say that Tia Feng is unafraid to carve her own path – her collection’s wow-factor put that idea to bed. Indeed, given all that she’s already achieved (and with this standout collection now under her belt), it’s safe to say that we’ve only seen the beginnings of what she can do.