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BUDDING DESIGNERS

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ZUBER BY ILAI JIKOIONO 10/10.

Again, Ilai’s most mature collection to date. Almost the entire collection was pulled by visiting Fashion Editor Shannon Clayworth for a destinatio­n fashion shoot. This designer has always pushed the boundaries of his own imaginatio­n, and speaks to the future of Fijian fashion. Unconventi­onal material for our runways including burlap and leather, and hand stitched floral appliqués, posited against delicate silks and soft satins was a brave move, but also one that reflects the global move towards uncommon pairings of fabric.

LAVALANI BY SU SAMUELS 7/10.

Su has come a long way and I am personally proud of her. This was a strong collection, using beautiful material, and stunning details (give me gold buttons any day). However, I have never been a fan of using a single material throughout an entire collection, and I feel like Su is ready to break out of this and present a collection of greater maturity by incorporat­ing compliment­ary prints and colours to create a collection that is a stronger reflection of her brilliance.

FANCY PANTS BY GWEN FONG 10/10.

Fashion platforms are opportunit­ies for branding, and this fact is often forgotten by many designers, but was certainly not taken for granted by Gwen. This whimsical adventure into the mind of this incredible artist should (cont.) be an inspiratio­n to us all to take a chance and throw caution to the wind. This is not about wearabilit­y, it is about high art and high fashion colliding.

ROWIE LAL (READY TO WEAR) 9/10.

A strong collection from a strong woman. Rowie brought protest fashion to our runway and I feel that everyone left feeling empowered by her message. My only notes are that her t-shirts, which were very on trend with her logo emblazoned across the chest (very Gucci-esque, and reminiscen­t of the re-imagined 90s Tommy Hilfiger tees of today), did not need to have the name or year of the collection. It would have also been nice to see a few more local faces incorporat­ed into her garments graphics.

GG BY GABRIEL GADE 6/10.

A brilliant launch to Gabriel’s career. The collection was edgy with cord details, multilayer ruffle sleeves, and youthful silhouette­s. As a collection, it could have been more cohesive, but this is a very promising young designer and one to watch.

“I’m still a rookie in this runway industry only having walked two shows prior to this. Both shows taking place in 2017 last year with the first one in Auckland for Pacific Fusion Fashion. My second show was in Sydney for Pacific Runway. Being backstage dressed in the designer’s amazing outfits waiting to be sent out onto the runway was very exciting. When you combine that excitement with the Fijian fun attitude, you know it’s going to be a good time.” - Fili Tapa

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