Maori & Pacific Designers At Fashion Week

Published: Wed 19 Oct 2005 12:44 AM
Maori And Pacific Designers And Models Bring Fresh Colour to Fashion Week
Joining a stellar lineup of Maori and Pacific Island high profilers modelling at the Westfield Style Pasifika Show for Air New Zealand Fashion Week will be April Bruce (Ieremia), who will be modelling for Ellena Tavioni the designer from the Cook Islands who is part of the Westfield Style Pasifka Show at Air New Zealand Fashion week tomorrow (Thursday) at 11am.
Ellena is the first Pacific Island based designer to show at Fashion Week.
Also confirmed to appear on the show wearing some of the Charmaine Love collection are Stacey Daniels, Scotty Morrison, Mark Hewlett, Norm Hewitt and Shane Cortese.
The Westfield Style Pasifika Show will also incorporate key garments from the Westfield Style Pasifika Fashion Awards including the winning garments.
Backgrounders on Designers Attached
Bio on Charmaine Love
Designer Charmaine Love exploded onto the fashion scene last year when she won the coveted Supreme Award at the 2004 Westfield Style Pasifika in Auckland. She also took out the awards for the “three-piece collection” and the “menswear” categories.
Against stiff opposition, the self-taught designer impressed judges and the public with her unique ability to combine Maori design founded on traditional images with urban fashion wear.
As well as making a name for herself in the local fashion industry, Charmaine is building a formidable reputation as a designer of choice to international stars such as Robbie Williams, Fergie (lead singer of the Black Eyed Peas who wore one of Charmaines dresses on the red carpet at the 2005 Aria Awards), Ben Harper and Nelly.
Charmaines “other” job is as owner/designer of Kia Kaha Clothing, a Wellington based clothing company who is in partnership with New Zealand’s number one and 2005 US Open golf champion Michael Campbell. Charmaine single handedly designs, sources and oversees the production of the fashionable Cambo range of sports clothing that is distributed worldwide.
Charmaines latest Cambo design the “mangopare” received worldwide recognition when Michael successfully held off the challenge of Tiger Woods to win the 2005 US Open. Donald Trump was so impressed with Charmaines design, he immediately ordered 6 replica Cambo shirts.
Charmaine will be launching her own fashion label “Charmaine Love” at the New Zealand fashion week later this year.
Designer name: Ellena Tavioni
Based: Rarotonga
"Our aim is to create a unique position for TAV in the fashion world," says Ellena Tavioni. "I like to create clothes that are appealing, comfortable and easy to sell."
Looking at her Pacific inspired creations it is easy to see where she is coming from. Ellena - a former Miss Cook Island who studied design at the Melbourne College of Textiles, likes to design garments that are comfortable and easy to wear, appealing, yet completely individual in their design concept.
Tavioni specialises in resort wear, swimwear, day wear and cocktail/dinner wear. However it is her prints, - hand block printed and hand painted - where she draws inspiration from the tropical environment (flora and sea life) and Polynesian traditions which provide the point of difference.
Refreshing shades are created to reflect the tropical influence yet are influenced by current trends. Using cotton knit and cotton lycra as well as fine woven cottons, her range of leisure wear covers a broad spectrum of inter-relating pieces that can be worn separately or in tandem. An addition of fine wools for her printing skills and newly developed patterns (all original with boards carved on her premises) will allow her to expand the range into a wider export vista in the Pacific Rim and beyond.
TAV now exports to Tahiti, Hawaii, Australia, Fiji and Samoa.
Inspired by her own infallible instinct for what is new and wearable, Ellena aims to deliver a range that can easily transit from day to night. For the future she sees an opening in fabulous skirts, which can be, dressed up or down and combined with fine knits for colder climates or simple colour co-ordinated Ts for a more relaxed feel.
TAV will make their debut in the Westfield Style Pasifika section at this year's Air New Zealand Fashion Week, launching their second label "Ellena Tavioni" a more up market brand.

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