Māori designer to bring royal flavour to NZ Fashion Week

By Taroi Black

Expectations are high for New Zealand Fashion Week this year as the event launches at the ANZ Viaduct Event Centre at 6pm tonight. 

One Māori designer who has made headlines over the past year is Kharl Wirepa, a Rotorua designer who is entering for the third time.

“I’m flying up today for tonight's launch and then I fly back to Rotorua to finish off my collection, so it’s go-go-go from today onwards”, says Wirepa. 

“The build-up is quite intense, so months and months of work will be put together for this year's event.”

Mr Wirepa says that every Māori fashion designer this week is looking for perfection and looking for the next best thing, “it’s going to be absolutely fabulous,” says Wirepa.

The theme for his couture show this Thursday at the ANZ Viaduct Event Centre is royalty.

“Elegance and the mystery of blue blood is what I am trying to achieve this year.”

“It’s all about having an elite style and attitude because that is the vision that I have for this season compared to last year which was about glamour.  So you’ll be expecting my models to be wearing a lot of jewellery and diamonds.  Vogue magazine came to my show last year and we’ve continued to stay in contact with them.”

During the weekend Wirepa had the honour of showcasing his evening wear collection at the 10th-anniversary koroneihana of King Tuheitia.

Wirepa has also invited the elite Italian Elle magazine team to the NZ Fashion Week show.

“I’m looking forward to it,” says Wirepa.