One-off designs made with New Zealand Merino wool by some of the biggest names in world fashion, are set to grace the catwalk during this year's Westfield Style Pasifika at Vector Arena on 18 and 19 October as part of the REAL New Zealand Festival, which showcases all things New Zealand during Rugby World Cup 2011.
Designers including Japan's Yohji Yamamoto, Ireland's John Rocha and Australia's Tigerlily, have joined England's Elizabeth Emanuel - who designed Diana, Princess of Wales' wedding dress - and designers from the other Rugby World Cup nations, in creating garments inspired by their home countries and reflecting the ethics and values of rugby for the event.
Prime Minister John Key invited the world's top designers to create a rugby-themed garment in NZ merino for Westfield Style Pasifika, attracting designers from the iconic Emanuel and Rocha (whose fashion empire turns over more than 200 million Euro a year), Romanian star Andreea Musat and leading South African fashion designer Simon Rademan, to those working in small studios in the Pacific islands and Africa.
The International Collection will feature alongside designs by celebrated New Zealand designers such as World, Zambesi, Sabatini, Annah Stretton, and Untouched World that will reflect New Zealand's unique identity.
The two-night extravaganza, on October 18 and 19 between RWC 2011 Semi-final and Final matches, will also include winning designs from the Westfield Style Pasifika Fashion Awards and designs by previous Style Pasifika stars, against the backdrop of an entertainment spectacular.
Show producer and artistic director Stan Wolfgramm says: "The REAL New Zealand Festival and Rugby World Cup 2011 provide an amazing opportunity for New Zealand as a nation to tell our story to the world while the spotlight is on us.
"Style Pasifika has developed the rugby-inspired International Designer Collection with that in mind. It's incredible to have the support of these celebrated international designers - and our own amazing designers - whose input will ensure this year's event is an absolute must-see for Kiwis and international visitors alike.
"The rugby-inspired International Designer Collection will be the only collection of its kind in the world, cementing our position as a nation that leads the way in creative ideas and design."
Westfield Style Pasifika, now in its 17th year, is an iconic New Zealand event and the world's largest indigenous fashion event. The awards within the event challenge designers to produce cutting edge fashion inspired by the unique and colourful fusion of Pasifika which is everything from this part of the world that makes us distinctive. The result is an explosion of fashion, art and culture, defining a uniquely New Zealand style.
Westfield Style Pasifika - Best of Pasifika NZ 2011
When: Tuesday 18 October (public event) & Wednesday 19 October 2011 (hosting/VIP event)
Where: Vector Arena, Auckland
For more information visit www.stylepasifika.co.nz
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