New Zealand Fashion Week to be postponed until 2025

2 May 2024
By Fashion Quarterly

In a surprising announcement, New Zealand Fashion Week’s owner reveals that the annual event will be postponed for another year.

Rory Dochety show 2023. Image: Getty Images.

After making a triumphant return in 2023 following a three-year hiatus, it has been revealed today that New Zealand Fashion Week will be moving from an annual event to a biennial format. The announcement came from owner Feroz Ali, who purchased New Zealand Fashion week in 2021 from Dame Pieter Stewart. 

“We have been greatly heartened by the early commitment from a group of anchor designers and sponsors, in particular our naming rights partner Shark Beauty and Tātaki Auckland Unlimited, media partner NZME, Ngāti Whātua Ōrākei, Millennium Hotels & Resorts, Westfield, Resene, Go Well and Ministry of Social Development,” said Ali in a statement. “But the reality is that consumer confidence is at an all-time low and the fashion retail industry has been particularly affected by the reduced consumer spending.”

The announcement comes after a string of recent brand closures in Aotearoa, with Ali citing the “economic downturn and pressures on consumer spending” as two of the key reasons behind the decision. While the event was originally scheduled for August this year, it will now be taking place in the second half of 2025, with no specific dates given yet.

Campbell Luke show 2023. Image: Getty Images.

So, what next for the designers?

Though an official schedule was still yet to be released, multiple designers had already been confirmed to show at this year’s event, including industry veterans Juliette Hogan and Kathryn Wilson. 

“We are disappointed to hear of the postponement of NZFW as we were looking forward to bringing our collections to life on stage, celebrating alongside our industry peers with media and customers,” Wilson told FQ

“It’s understandable that brands and businesses are needing to be mindful of outgoings and expenses in the current economic climate, however we will continue to create magical moments and memories for our customers with other nationwide events planned throughout the calendar this year and look forward to being part of a collaborative industry event when NZFW returns in 2025.” 

Juliette Hogan shared a similar sentiment, stating: “I absolutely respect the decision that NZFW have made to postpone this year’s event but I do feel sad about it. It’s tough out there at the moment, for our industry and many others. NZFW plays an integral role in bringing our industry together to celebrate and I will miss that.”

On the topic of logistics...

Despite the number of designers already registered, Ali revealed “[there weren’t] enough for a robust weeklong schedule to make the event viable this year,” he said. “We have listened to the industry, and carefully considered and taken on board the feedback from designers around the country, who tell us they need dedicated time and space to focus on their core retail business.”

With repairs currently underway on the Wynyard Quarter crossing bridge — a key access point to the NZFW venue — the postponement will also allow time for this to be completed before the event. 

“While we recognise the excitement there is around NZFW following its triumphant and successful return in 2023, demonstrating its resilience and popular appeal, transitioning to a long-term biennial programme reflects the mindful shift we see within Aotearoa’s fashion industry,” said Ali.

Further information about the 2025 schedule is expected to be released over the coming months, but for now, all we can do is wait…

Imagery: Getty Images.


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