Wilson’s new shoes take off
A passion for Kung Fu shoes in Papakura in the 1980s has led fashion shoe-designer Kathryn Wilson to international success and a regular spot in Queenstown’s fashion scene.
For the sixth year Walker released her new spring/summer collection as part of the Clicquot in the Snow event in the resort.
This year’s event was the largest yet with over 200 attendees, mainly women, at the Milford Sound Flights hangar for the glamorous 1960s PanAm Airways inspired catwalk and champagne.
The setting was colder than many of the punters expected but the shades of pastel pink and lilac leather, complimented with touches of Clicquot yellow and floral embroidery detailing were well received.
Speaking before the event Wilson said she grew up with two older sisters and a mum who was a ‘‘true optimist’’.
Her mother would buy her daughters Kung Fu shoes and Commando Ms from Para Rubber and they would use Fluffit pens, Puff Paint and glitter pens to decorate them.
‘‘I would take it a step further and cut the sides out and cut the toes out,’’ said Wilson. ‘‘I would be stoked and think no one has a pair like mine.’’
She worked in shoe stores after school, studied a Bachelor of Design and won a scholarship to study shoes in England.
‘‘I was good at art and maths and not much else and encouraged to pursue something I liked.’’
She has gone on to become New Zealand’s leading shoe designer, even having her shoes bought by Beyonce.
She describes her shoes as practical but fashionable.
‘‘I guess they have a purpose but at the end of the day fashion foot wear is a want not a need.’’
The full Clicquot in the Snow programme included the highest croquet in the Southern Hemisphere with Clicquot Croquet, a four-course degustation lunch designed by Josh Emett at Rata, daily apre`s-ski at the Snow Bar on Coronet Peak and a lavish Clicquot Rose´ inspired closing party featuring Boh Runga and Jason Kerrison to conclude the festivities.
Shoe designer Kathryn Wilson with Samantha Hayes and models in Queenstown.