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Auckland’s Fashion Movers and Shakers

We decided to catch up with four Fashion Movers and Shakers and got their thoughts on, well, anything.

By Kristy Mayo
September 03, 2012
By Kristy Mayo
September 03, 2012

[photo credit: Sharp Photography]

Concrete Playground is a proud supporter of New Zealand Fashion Week. Any event that celebrates creativity on this kind of scale deserves recognition and support. We are a small, far away country, so to create something that can meet the demand and attract the eye of international audiences is no small feat. And of course, there are the people in and around the industry who make things happen, Make-up, PR, through to the designers themselves, there are numerous personalities and opinions that make us unique. We decided to catch up with four Fashion Movers and Shakers and got their thoughts on, well, anything.

The Make Up Artist

Rosie Callen, Napoleon Perdis

Where do you take inspiration from when planning an outfit? Does it depend on your mood or what you have on for the day?

Definitely depends on what I have on for the day. For meetings with retailers & staff I tend to take a slightly more corporate approach, but for creative events & meetings I'll be a bit more edgy. It's always black though! I try to wear less black when I'm not working, which basically means denim and perhaps some sort of colourful scarf or accessory.

What item should we start with and style around?
Underwear is always good....and makeup & hair!

How many colours is too many in an outfit?
This is not a huge problem for me with a wardrobe of 90% black... but I it all depends on how you put things together. I've seen some very unlikely combo's this season that have looked amazing. I think the 'red lip rule' applies here - if you're unsure, wear it for 12 minutes and if you still don't feel comfortable then it's probably not quite right.

What is the most important element in an outfit for you?
Comfort is huge - especially if I'm travelling or on a job. Having said that, I wore a not-so-easily-accessible full length jumpsuit on a flight to Sydney for a meeting recently, not ideal in that tiny cubicle when I had to pop to the bathroom mid-flight! I guess the main thing is in any situation, as long as I feel stylish and confident in an outfit and it fits my shape well then I am happy, whether it's 'on trend' or not.

What are some  versatile wardrobe staples this season that will work across outfits?
I never get sick of my leather jackets - so versatile in any season in NZ. A couple of well cut feminine shirts that can be dressed up or down are definitely a must at the moment. And I'm loving all the edgy jewellery that's around.

What's your favourite outfit at the moment?
I don't have a particular fave outfit at the moment - but I am obsessed with a couple of old family furs that I hauled out of the depths of my Mum's wardrobe a few months ago - trying to make them work with everything!

The Fashion Designer

Michelle Wilson, Michelle Yvette

At the beginning of a new season what approach should you take to shopping? Go out and just see what you find? Do it all at the beginning or staggered across season?

It is most importanat to evauate your current wardrobe. Work out what has worked for you in the past and what hasn’t. Your aim should be to mix high quality key pieces with less expensive basics and accessories. Buying at the beginning of each season ensures you get the best of what is on offer and can get the wear out of it that you need, especially on key pieces so you can justlify the prices you will be paying for brand and quality.

Have you got any tips people should think about before shopping? Write a list? Research?
Before shopping you should know roughly what you need otherwise you will go out and buy missmatching things and find it hard to create a story in your wardrobe. At lease have a basic list of styles, colours and key pieces needed.

Where are your favourite places to shop in Auckland?
To be honest, I am terrible at shopping in Auckland. I wear mostly my own brand otherwise I pick up things overseas to reduce the risk of bumping into someone withthe same outfit on. In saying that, I do love all the cool new stores popping up in the Britomart area.

What do you think are some mistakes people make when shopping?
Shopping blind, refer to tips on what to think about before going shopping. Also, a key mistake poeple seem to make is thinking they have to spend a lot of money. You only need a few key investment pieces per season then mix and match and you will always look stylish.

What new season trends should be included in everyone’s shopping list this Spring?
Add a touch of color! Most New Zealanders shy away from colour but it just lifts any outfit and shows a playful side of your personality. Neons are in and orange is popular.

The Fashion Director/Designer

Benny Castles, WORLD

What are the  essential ‘must have’ pieces for Spring/Summer 2012?

WORLD for both boys and girls is the obvious must have for Summer this year!!! However, in a general sense formal attire is the most important section of Summer wear for people to address the myriad of occasions that the summer months bring. This means elegant and daring cocktail dresses for the girls and personality rich suiting for the boys.

What colours will really stand out this Spring/Summer?
All of them! Especially the bright ones, especially when everything you wear is "matchy-matchy" .... I match my socks to my glasses!

Are there any rules we should follow for the new looks?
Rules are the antithesis of fashion, if you follow rules you aren't fashionable you are just not naked.

Key new season accessories to update your look?

Globetrotter Attache Case for the gentlemen and for the girls the ultimate accessory is fine fragrance...I would suggest Fluerissimo by Creed.

Who/What was your inspiration for WORLD’s latest collection?
WORLD's Spring / Summer Collection "Black Tie White Noise" showcases an entertaining harmony between formal high fashion and a more relaxed, yet sophisticated, street style. The collection was a design based examination of modern formalities within fashion, incorporating both historic detailing and contemporary character across a range of garments, set to suit an informed clientele of individuals.  All areas of the collection within the male and female divisions are intertwined with bright colours and a brigade of prints set against core garments in block colours littered with both subtle and exaggerated design elements. The main inspirations were Beau Brummel (the original Dandy) along with Jazz Age, Disco and Americana formal dressing attire.

If you could give aspiring Kiwi men and women one piece of style advice, what would it be?
Have fun. If fashion does not make you smile...then you aren't doing it right!!!

The PR

Matthew Vogts, Spark PR & Activate

What is the key to maintaining a fabulous, inspiring wardrobe?
I really only try to adhere to two simple rules. Have a wardrobe with personality – your personality - so that you can dress how you feel or put on clothes to make you feel. Secondly, try not to categorise your clothes any more than absolutely necessary. Day-work, evening-casual, colleague-formal, weekend-relaxed-glamour and other unnecessary labels that just constrain your thinking and hamper your ability to enjoy your wardrobe. Simply put, stop making rules about clothes and just have fun. As contrite as it may sound, you’ll always look your best if you’re having fun.

How often should we Spring clean our wardrobe?
I only clean-out my wardrobe once a year but I think the main thing is to be as ruthless as you can. Out with the old!  If you haven’t worn it more than once in the last year it’s never going to be quite right.

Should winter/summer items be stored I opposite season?
Not at all, I think you should have access to your clothes at all times to be able to wear them at all times. Often the time when you need to feel a bit like summer the most is in winter. Also, the simple truth for Auckland is that the seasons are never clear cut.

Do you abide by the old adage we wear 10% of our clothes 90% of the time?
I do and I think you should also buy clothes accordingly. Spending more on items that you love and then wearing them more often wins hands-down over throw-away fashion in my book.

What items are on your wardrobe wish list this season?
Anything to do with colour and tailoring – sports jackets and shorts as we head towards summer.

Published on September 03, 2012 by Kristy Mayo


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