For Sir Peter Blake it was a pair of red socks. Sharon Stephen­son asks seven other Ki­wis about their lucky clothes.

For Sir Peter Blake it was a pair of red socks. Sharon Stephen­son asks seven other Ki­wis about their lucky clothes.

Weekend Herald - Canvas - - CONTENTS - PIC­TURES BY DEAN PUR­CELL

Ifound them in an unloved out­let store in an even more unloved part of Mi­lan – a 40 euro pair of jeans that sucked in what needed to be sucked in, made me look taller and my butt look like some­thing sculpted by Michelan­gelo.

Even bet­ter was how lucky those jeans turned out to be. While wear­ing them I crossed con­ti­nents, wrote award-win­ning sto­ries, bought and sold a cou­ple of houses and was pro­posed to by my now-hus­band. Those Diesel low-rises were my Holy Grail, my Mor­dor and my magic num­bers rolled into one (un­til they fell apart, that is, and I had to bin them).

But are cer­tain items of cloth­ing luck­ier than oth­ers? Seven Ki­wis open their wardrobes to tell us about gar­ments that have brought them luck.


It’s mul­ti­coloured, beaded and cost just $12 in a Te Atatu op shop, but the cardi­gan is Jess Daniell’s tal­is­man.

The owner of two Auck­land del­i­catessens and a din­ner de­liv­ery ser­vice found the vin­tage cardi­gan on her way to a friend’s wed­ding two years ago.

“I’d gone into my lo­cal op shop one Satur­day, look­ing for a hand­bag for a wed­ding I was at­tend­ing that af­ter­noon.

“I found the per­fect hand­bag and, as I was head­ing to the counter, out of the cor­ner of my eye I spot­ted a beaded sleeve and knew in­stantly I had to have it. I con­sider find­ing the cardi lucky in it­self.”

Daniell has worn it con­stantly ever since: “It goes with every­thing, from dresses to track­pants and slip­pers when curled up on the couch on a win­try Sun­day af­ter­noon.”

She was, in fact, wear­ing it the day she re­ceived con­sent to build her sec­ond deli in Re­muera. “It was a six-month bat­tle with Auck­land Coun­cil to get con­sent, so I’d like to think my lucky cardi­gan had some­thing to do with fi­nally get­ting it.”


Sid Sahrawat isn’t su­per­sti­tious — ex­cept about his birth­day. “I was born on 8/8/80, a tri­fecta of eights, which has al­ways been lucky for me,” says the

award-win­ning chef and restau­ra­teur.

“I found out I was go­ing to be a fa­ther for the first time on my 30th birth­day, we bought our cur­rent home on my 34th birth­day and my brother Suhail pre­sented me with a be­spoke black chef’s jacket he’d made for me on my 36th birth­day.”

That jacket, made from a self-clean­ing wa­ter­re­sis­tant and car­bon-neu­tral Swiss fab­ric, has par­tic­u­lar mean­ing, be­cause “it was de­signed and crafted by a loved one and was pre­sented to me on my lucky day”. So spe­cial, in fact, that he wears it only for oc­ca­sions such as guest ap­pear­ances and photo shoots and, un­like his reg­u­lar chef’s whites, keeps it safely at home.

Be­cause he splits his time be­tween his two restau­rants, Sahrawat says his brother de­signed a vel­cro tag so he can cus­tomise the jacket ac­cord­ing to which­ever eatery he’s in. “It’s an in­ge­nious fea­ture and I’m hon­oured to be able to wear it.”

Lind­sey Daw­son AU­THOR Try­ing to find the per­fect out­fit to wear to the launch of her ninth book, Scar­let &

Ma­genta, led Lind­sey Daw­son to her duster


“My book has a Vic­to­rian theme, so I wanted to find some­thing vaguely Vic­to­rian to wear to the launch events last year,” she says. “I was look­ing for a duster coat in lush bro­cade with a big col­lar and wide sleeves that I could slip over sim­ple black sep­a­rates.”

Re­cov­er­ing from breast can­cer treat­ment and too tired to shop, the for­mer mag­a­zine edi­tor wan­dered into Pon­sonby Cen­tral, where she stum­bled upon the pop-up shop of Kitch Cuth­bert, who makes noth­ing but duster coats.

“Kitch said she’d make me one, and sent me off to Nick’s Fab­rics in Otara to find suit­able bro­cade.”

Which is how Daw­son be­came pos­si­bly the only au­thor to at­tend a book launch wear­ing cur­tain fab­ric.

“But ev­ery time I wear the coat, I sell heaps of books, so it’s be­come my lucky coat. I’m also bowled over by the sheer luck of find­ing some­one who could make me ex­actly what I’d been think­ing of. Kitch mostly works from home and if I’d turned up a week ear­lier or later, her pop-up store wouldn’t have been there. It was like a fash­ion an­gel tapped me on the shoul­der and sent me into Pon­sonby Cen­tral that day.”


So de­ter­mined was de­signer Fiona Fong to get the hand­bag of her dreams, she al­most missed her flight home. “Four years ago I was in New York and found out the only place that had the 31.1 Phillip Lim 31 Hour Bag was Bar­ney’s in Madi­son Ave,” says Fong of the hand­bag she af­fec­tion­ately calls Phil. “I jumped in a cab for a crazy cross-town ride, cut­ting it pretty fine for my flight.”

The Grey Lynn-based de­signer, who works with a range of lo­cal fash­ion brands, says she’d been han­ker­ing af­ter the bag for some time. “I had to ra­tio­nalise spend­ing a large amount of money on a hand­bag when I’d just left a se­cure job to go free­lance. But Phil is a re­minder of my leap of faith and has been with me ev­ery step of the way, sup­port­ing me in self em­ploy­ment.”

Shortly af­ter re­turn­ing to New Zealand, Fong was in­vited to move into a house that had suf­fi­cient room for a work­room. “This al­lowed me to take on new clients with­out hav­ing to do any kind of ad­ver­tis­ing. It all fell into my lap af­ter I got Phil, so I think he’s a lucky omen.”


A vin­tage men’s Gucci watch has proved for­tu­itous for lead­ing Auck­land ac­tor/pre­sen­ter/agent Imo­gen John­son, who bought it 15 years ago from a Pon­sonby shop to cel­e­brate the first cheque from her now mul­ti­mil­lion-dol­lar busi­ness.

“The watch cost about $1500 and I went into over­draft for it. But I re­ally wanted to cel­e­brate set­ting up the busi­ness.” John­son says the watch has proved its worth many times over. “Since the day I bought it, busi­ness has re­ally taken off. That watch has now come to sym­bol­ise the suc­cess of my busi­ness. I al­ways glance at my watch be­fore go­ing into ne­go­ti­a­tions for my clients – it’s be­come some­thing of a good luck omen.”

John­son, who rep­re­sents lead­ing Kiwi celebri­ties such as Karl Ur­ban and Melanie Lynskey, takes the watch off only at night and when show­er­ing. “It’s so much a part of me, I’d be dev­as­tated if I ever lost it. My life is so time-bound that it’s an es­sen­tial busi­ness tool and be­cause I’m such a stick­ler for be­ing early, this watch keeps me on track. Life’s too fast, you can’t be late.”

Ed­ward von Dadel­szen CEO/FOUNDER OF E. VON DADEL­SZEN

It’s the first rule of re­tail – sell only that which you love. In Ed­ward von Dadel­szen’s case, that in­cludes the Biker Per­fecto, a but­tery, soft grey leather jacket, the first item he or­dered for his epony­mous ate­lier, which opened in Cus­toms St East in May last year.

“I fell in love with this jacket when I met with the French man­u­fac­turer, Seraphin Paris, the most ex­clu­sive leather jacket-maker in the world.

“It turned out to be lucky for me be­cause Seraphin agreed to work with me, which is a pretty big deal, given I’m one of the few in the world to do so. This jacket rep­re­sents the birth of my busi­ness.”

That was 18 months ago and since then, von Dadel­szen’s jacket has ac­com­pa­nied him ev­ery­where from meet­ings in Mi­lan and Paris to early morn­ing walks around Par­nell.

“The first time I wore this jacket, it changed my per­spec­tive on what cloth­ing can look and feel like. It fits me bet­ter to­day than when I first bought it,” he says of the jacket that took three weeks to cus­tom make.

“It’s been in­cred­i­bly lucky for me in busi­ness and I’ll be wear­ing it for years to come.”

Mi­randa Har­court ACT­ING COACH

Mi­randa Har­court never goes any­where with­out her blue and white scarf – ex­cept for that time she lost it and had to buy an­other. The Welling­to­nian bought the cot­ton scarf in Kolkata, In­dia, two years ago, when she was coach­ing 5-year-old child star Sunny Pawar for the film Lion, which also stars Ni­cole Kid­man and Dev Patel.

“The cast and crew vis­ited a chil­dren’s home and craft em­po­rium called An­ti­macas­sar, where I found this gor­geous scarf.”

Har­court says it helped get her through the long and of­ten gru­elling shoot. “It sounds strange, but it al­most felt like the scarf helped me to work. I would put it on ev­ery day and it would give me strength in some pretty tough shoot­ing en­vi­ron­ments.” As well as be­ing beau­ti­ful, it’s also use­ful, she adds, “be­cause I’m a great crier, and the fab­ric is per­fect for tear-mop­ping”.

Har­court, who has just fin­ished co-di­rect­ing her first fea­ture film, The Changeover, with hus­band Stu­art McKenzie, says her luck ran out when she lost the scarf on a film set in Italy last De­cem­ber.

“The mo­ment I got back to New Zealand, I rang An­ti­macas­sar and they made me an iden­ti­cal one. I wear it ev­ery day, in all weath­ers, be­cause I al­ways need luck. And I’m go­ing to be more care­ful with this one.”

Lind­sey Daw­son and her prized duster coat.

Sid Sahrawat and his spe­cial chef’s jacket.

Mi­randa Har­court and the sec­ond ver­sion of her lucky scarf.

Ed­ward von Dadel­szen fell in love with his leahter jacket.

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