Oct. 26, 2018, 5:48 p.m.
From streetwear to couture, it was a presentation that encapsulated all styles as the crafts of 13 fashion designers were showcased at the sold out Moko fashion show event.
The event was organised by the InnoNative business hub alongside He Puna Mārama trust and attracted a crowd of fashion fanatics who were treated to not only a display of fabrics but a show of dance, music and art.
Opening with streetwear and the popular Tukau legacy brand launching their new crop top for the summer season as well as local groups Common Grounds fitness, Team Paddle Fly and Mahi Dogs. InnoNative Manager Auriole Ruka said it was important to have a representation of men in the show.
“Just our men being there, that mana tāne, being able to carry themselves with pride and represent all their different designers and labels,”Ruka said.
A troupe of Ngāpuhi beauties hit the runway wearing clothes from international designers Aroha Langley now based in Melbourne, high street fashion label Natura Aura with their iwi creations hosiery line and Jeanine Clarkin who has just returned from London fashion week.
“My collection is using really natural linens, it’s really functional…The theme is about kaupapa kaikai which is about food sustainability and keeping to the natural.
“I like that the (local) designers can service their community and that there’s room for everybody in their network,” Clarkin said of the event.
The powerful dance performances of “Ko Au” mesmerised the audience as the soulful sounds of Three.I.C filled the Maumahara hangar throughout the evening.
But it was local emerging designers the Year 10 girls from Te Kāpehu Whetū, Kohi Woodman and Minnie-May Niha who stole the show as they wowed the audience with traditional harakeke pieces, flowing feathery garments and re-purposed tartan blankets.
Woodman’s collection was based on the children’s book “How the kiwi lost its wings” and draws inspiration from the fibres of feathers.
“The pīpīwharauroa, the tui, the pūkeko and the kiwi so each garment is representing one of those birds,” said Woodman.
AUT student Minnie-May Niha has just completed her final assessment in a Bachelor of Design and created her brand “Minnie-Mayd” around a merging of Māori culture and streetwear.
“You’ll see a lot of things that look similar to what traditional Māori would wear to what I would wear now,” says Niha.
And it was only positive feedback from the audience as TV personality Luke Bird said the collaborative fusion event showcased everything unique indigenous culture has to offer.
“When you add fashion, modernism, culture, arts and dance you’ve got a full buffet of pure amazingness…...the designers tonight are fantastic!”