This month Fashion Quarterly is excited to be helping to make aspiring New Zealand fashion designers’ dreams come true!
NZHouseChina, in association with Fashion Quarterly, called upon emerging designers and final year design students from around New Zealand to participate in a unique competition – The Leather Fashion Design Awards 2016.
Entries were collected in three categories – Women’s Outfit, Men’s Shoe Mini Collection and Men’s or Women’s Outdoor Shoe Mini Collection – with the three final winners receiving a prize any aspiring fashion designer can only dream of: A trip of a lifetime to China to oversee the manufacturing of the winners’ dream collections; prize money of $3,000 each; PLUS invaluable exposure to distribution opportunities in New Zealand and China. And the sparkling cherry on top? The final designs will be showcased in two issues of Fashion Quarterly, New Zealand’s leading fashion title.
What we expected: Exciting and out-of-the-box entries from some of the finest young talent our country has to offer.
What we didn’t expect: So much thought, time and effort put into each and every entry we received. The calibre and sophistication of the entries was off the charts and made the judging process extremely hard for the jury, which consisted of Fashion Quarterly editor Sally-Ann Mullin (below left) and fashion industry stalwart Claire Hahn.
Says Sally-Ann of the applications they received: “The level of talent shown in the entries was very high and it was a promising reminder of the passion and commitment emerging designers have for their craft as they come up through the ranks in such a competitive and difficult industry.”
While only one winner could be chosen for each of the three categories, both Sally-Ann and Claire felt that special mentions should be made across the Women’s Outfit and Men’s Shoe Mini Collection categories, as the standard was so high.
CATEGORY A: Women’s Outfit.
WINNER: Kate Fisher
Sally-Ann and Claire felt Kate had designed a forward-thinking, tasteful and original range and had supplied a very professional design proposal to support the collection and explain her thinking behind it. The thought and technique that had gone into developing the ‘circle jacket’ particularly impressed the judges and her detailed instructions of how it would be made was a highlight. Both judges are looking forward to seeing the final product and feel it will be wearable, sellable and also shoot well editorially. This is a hard thing to accomplish for even the most seasoned of designers.
Runner up: Jessie Wong
Jessie had a strong video and thought process behind her collection. The execution behind the design and construction of the long line leather jacket was fantastic and the only fault was that it left the judges wanting more! They were particularly impressed that she had gone to the length of shooting a campaign issue and even presented the behind-the-scenes look at this as part of her entry.
CATEGORY B: Men’s Shoe Mini Collection
WINNER: Jarryd Kerr
The passion, skill and commitment to the art of men’s footwear was evident from the moment his impressive video entry started to play. Sally-Ann and Claire were taken with the sophisticated designs of Jarryd’s three shoe designs. They look forward to seeing them produced and think Jarryd has an extremely bright future ahead of him.
Runner up: Jared Faasalele
The judges adored Jared and his entry. His taste level was one of the highest among the entries and we are all eager to see what he has in store for us with his budding leather line Good Winter.
CATEGORY C: Outdoor Shoe Mini Collection
WINNER: Ellen Moore
Ellen was the standout winner in this category. Her video portrayed an in-depth and considered brand story and inspiration behind her collection. She answered the brief with three strong shoe designs that were wearable, marketable and the judges could see them selling well in the New Zealand market at a number of our most well-known streetwear stores. They also liked her restraint in design and the clever use of the colours of her West Coast environment.
Fashion Quarterly will follow Ellen, Jarryd and Kate as they travel to Shanghai and oversee their dream collections being brought to life, thanks to NZHouseChina. Stay tuned to FQ.co.nz and @fashionquarterly on Instagram to follow all the updates.