Love fashion? Here’s what’s on around Auckland during NZFW

27 August 2019
By Fashion Quarterly


Whether you’re attending some shows but want more, or simply wish to soak up some of New Zealand’s fashion culture and history, there’s a range of things happening around the city during NZFW. We’ve outlined some of our favourites.

NZ Fashion Weekend

Sustainability, diversity and inclusivity are the big talking points of this year’s NZFW, and we recommend purchasing tickets for some of the insightful panels on offer at NZ Fashion Weekend – like Diversity Conversation: What can fashion do to be more inclusive? with speakers including Grace Stratton and Sammy Salsa, and Sustainability Conversation: Can Fashion Save the World? on Saturday 31 August, featuring a designer panel that include Maggie Hewitt of Maggie Marilyn and Marilou Dadat from Kowtow.

If it’s the runway you’re after, there are still some tickets available to shows like Zambesi 40 years of fashion, Mercy Hospice Show, K’ Road Presents, Federation, and the Sustainability Show.

For those looking to shop up a storm, the Designer Pop Up Sale is happening on Sunday September 1 from 10am to 5pm.

Auckland Central City Library

When Chanel created a make-believe library for their Couture Autumn/Winter 19/20 it was a signal of fashion’s modest mood, yes, but also a universal love of books and humble self-improvement. The Auckland Central City Library is right on trend this year, becoming an unofficial hub for NZFW this year, with a series of talks and initiatives aiming to share and build a fashion knowledge.

Now’s your chance to meet fashion industry experts with Make/Haste: Speed-dating Sustainable Fashion Leaders. After a panel discussion on sustainability, tradition and business in New Zealand fashion, the audience will be invited to get to know the speakers, from MC Kate Hall of Ethically Kate to Julia Leuchars from Trelise Cooper.

A Very Fashionable Talk, held Friday midday, includes an illustrated presentation featuring fancy-dress makers of nineteen and twentieth-century New Zealand from Marguerite Hill (heritage researcher for Auckland Council, long-time curator and textile expert) and a discussion on the importance of slow fashion from Wayne Siu (vintage fashion enthusiast and city planner).

Make, Do, Mend, is a daily series in the Makerspace, centered around the Japanese concept of “Mottaini” (a striving to minimize wastefulness in both action and thought). You can help make a Mottaini-inspired period costume project, sew a tote bag on a vintage sewing machine and join a demonstration of repairing, mending and upcycling in the style Japanese styles of Boro (Japanese for “rags” or “tattered cloth”) and Sashiko (meaning “little stabs”).

But it’s not just what’s happening inside, the Library is creating an outdoor cinema to inspire you and enrich your understanding of New Zealand Fashion history. Large scale street mural and evening film projections.

St James Theatre

From 6-10pm in the evenings, Monday until Sunday, the wall of the historic St James will host projections of archival footage from the Auckland Libraries Heritage Collection, NZFW archives, the NZ Fashion Museum, and the Zambesi archive (who happen to be showing their Autumn/Winter 2020 collection at the Library during the week.

Tāmaki Paenga Auckland War Memorial Museum

For all lovers of handbags and fashion history, the current exhibition Carried Away: Bags Unpacked showcases over 150 bags from the museum’s collection – many on display for the first time.

Cordis Hotel

Celebrating the launch of the Karen Walker’s new Atelier collection, Cordis have partnered with the designer and are hosting Karen Walker High Tea by Cordis, with delicious sweet and savoury options inspired by Karen Walker Atelier jewellery. From Monday August 19 to Saturday September 8 – bookings are essential.

Ellen Melville Centre

Head to Freyberg Square on Thursday afternoon for the Aho Runway Show: Jeanine Clarkin and Tāwhiao, part of the official NZFW off-site programme. Happening from 2.45pm – 3.30pm, the show celebrates the work of Tāwhiao and Clarkin, prolific Māori artists pioneering handwoven couture.

Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki

For younger fashion lovers, My ART My STYLE is happening on Saturday August 31. Inspired by the gallery’s current interactive exhibition F’Ani and RoBro present DiscoVERY, this free event is an immersive day of workshops and activities, encouraging the next generation of creators to explore renewable, mindful fashion and practice self-confidence and creative wellbeing.

The exhibition Frances Hodgkins: European Journeys ends September 1. Hodgkins’ work has inspired many local designers, including Karen Walker and Kate Sylvester. And the Guerrilla Girls: Reinventing the ‘F’ Word – Feminism! exhibition challenges representation in the art world – a dialogue that’s in line with the discussion around inclusivity and diversity at NZFW. It’s on until October 15.

Auckland CBD

Love a walking tour? NZ Fashion Museum will be hosting Walk the Walk fashion tours during NZFW on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. Led by a personal guide, the tour covers over 150 years of fashion history around central Auckland.

Shop Local

NZFW is the perfect time to get inspired by what’s on the runway (and the street) and update your wardrobe. We recommend supporting local designers whenever possible, and exploring vintage fashion.


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