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Fashion Week: WORLD back at Fashion Week!

Fashion Week: WORLD back at Fashion Week – it ain’t hard to be avant-garde

After a three year hiatus WORLD returned to the New Zealand Fashion Week runway with a show that was nothing short of immaculate.

The show was titled There is no depression in New Zealand - like the iconic Blam Blam Blam song – with designer Francis Hooper described it as WORLD’s antidote to “recession, depression and malaise.” It must be said that the depression theme also ties in nicely to co-founder Denise L’Estrange-Corbet’s recent autobiography launch – but no one has ever accused WORLD of being shy of promoting themselves.

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Image courtesy of Hilary Johnston.

Womenswear was first out and sat firmly at the classic end of the WORLD spectrum. Strong colour blocking against black in neatly tailored shapes was lent added interest via the use of black fur (loved the fur-bodiced empire line harem pant playsuit), beautiful black headpieces, and bright red satin touches like bow ties. Bows were deftly repeated every few outfits throughout the first section, and a white poplin bow cleverly transitioned into a subsection introducing that fabric.

Some have criticised WORLD’s quality of manufacture in the past but from the front row the tailoring looked immaculate – we particularly liked a cerise empire line ¾ coat.

Menswear debuted with an indigo velvet jacket – WORLD style their menswear beautifully and this outfit included slim jeans rolled at the ankle to reveal purple socks and red satin shoes. Lapels were adorned with rainbow coloured drug capsule brooches. The red satin accent theme was exuberantly extended in men’s hats – visors, hunting caps, a painter’s cap – and even little bags.

A drapey, vibrantly coloured satin group made up the show’s mid section, with a purple sleeveless wrap dress looking both stunning and flattering. Jumbo cornelli and piping contrast on menswear showed there’s no paucity of ideas in the WORLD menswear camp, and were charmingly accessorized by pink satin roses at the “knot” of ties.

Full length black gowns were belted inside the back waist, leaving the backs free to float as semi-trains.

The much awaited finale was signalled by Swarovski crystals – first used to delicious effect just on the high heel of black courts; then sprinkled like stars on tights, then used more and more intensely until they covered an entire outfit. Some $30,000 worth of crystals were used, and with the exception of the completely covered suit, all were hand-applied. The section was just for the girls and Hooper explained that as depression antidotes “the boys get the drugs, the girls get the glitter,”

Brent Lawler’s makeup had subtly morphed from relatively natural at beginning, to futuristic. In fact subtlety was a signature of the whole show – this is a label that no longer needs to use its theatricality to get attention, its clothing and styling speak for themselves.

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