The Pacific Fusion Fashion Show is now in its 4th year and continues to provide a platform for Pacific designers to showcase their fashion creations right in the heart of South Auckland.
Held at the Vodafone Events Centre for the first time, Pasifika designers from Aotearoa, Australia, Samoa, Tonga, Hawai'i, USA, Vanuatu, Solomon Islands and Papua New Guinea came together to showcase their Pacific inspired collections.
This year the theme was ‘Fashion Factory’ - 'A new generation of Pacific skills and labour has arrived on the factory floor. We are the generation creating, designing, modelling and enterprising our way to success!'
Event director and Fashion Stylist Nora Swann was also able to host a series of mini-events over the week leading up to the showcase on Saturday night including a 'Dressed in Confidence' workshop, a 2 day Business Capability Building workshop for the designers and a one day only pop-up shop.
13 designers showcased their designs with 66 aspiring models working the catwalk. Check out the different designer collections below.
Coco congrats to Gladierosa Hanipale who won the Face of Fusion 2019.
Designers - Alvis Meredith & Mata'afa Hans Wesche
Samoa & Tokelau (based in Samoa)
TAHIANO is changing up the couture bridal gown game in the Pacific. There’s no better place to find a high-end gown in the Pacific. recently had their gowns privately viewed by Vogue and Elle editor in Fiji, one of their greatest achievements yet.
FUNK n SOUL 97
Designer - Tia Semi
Samoan (based in Australia)
Tia Semi is an emerging Australian designer and model, who takes inspiration from her
Tia has cerebral palsy, intellectual disability, epilepsy, and is deaf. She hopes that her journey as a designer will inspire others to follow their dreams. Tia's collection is called ‘Malosiaga I Totonu’, which translates to ‘Strength Within’ in Samoan.
LAVA's ORIGINAL FASHION WEAR
Designer - Lava Grossmith
Honiara, Solomon Islands
With no formal education for tailoring in the Solomon Islands, Lava was self-taught by her mother who was a tailor. She enjoys creating outfits that can be worn all sorts of the occasion from the casual, street, evening and bridal wear.
Designer - Seraphina Woods
Niuean (Based in New Zealand)
Saint Fina is showing for the first time at PFFS 2019.
Saint Fina is a homage to Seraphina’s upbringing and her family. She has been working from home designing bespoke clothing for a growing client base under another brand.
Designers - Talosia Haulangi & James Laverty
Tuvaluan (Based in New Zealand)
Talosia Design is a luxury brand that focusses in couture and high-end collection season by season. Talosia was born in Tuvalu (Nanumea) with a long history in fashion after working with brands like Max Fashion, DJ Station, Zambesi and Marilyn Sainty.
Designer - Amy Letogo
Samoan (Based in New Zealand)
She was prompted to get into the fashion industry because she was not satisfied with fashion options for Plus Size consumers. Amy is committed to pushing the size restrictive boundaries of fashion while promoting body positivity and inclusivity.
Designer - Ari South
Hawaiian (Based in Hawai'i)
Ari South put Hawaiʻi on the map as the first designer from Hawaiʻi and finalist on Project Runway Allstars. She has since rooted and built her company on Oʻahu by blending high fashion modern designs with contemporary Hawaiian prints.
During the intermission at the show, South Auckland Heavy Metal group 'Shepherds Reign' performed - check out a snippet of their 'In the shallow' rendition.
Designer - Leata Mailo-McCarthy
Samoan (Based in Tonga)
The brand, Le-Ata, is inspired by LOVE for FAMILY, HERITAGE and PASSION for design, creativity and culture.
Each and every piece is thoughtfully designed with incorporation of hand-printed designs that
reflect pacific island motifs, primarily Tongan and Samoan.
AAS TRIBAL FASHION
Designer - Anna Amos
Papua New Guinea
Anna uses PNG tribal motifs to print and create contemporary PNG wear. Her fashion design is part of community outreach program empowering women, people with disabilities, youth, vulnerable individual and it's gender inclusive.
Designer - Frances Nimeti
Cook Islands (Based in New Zealand)
By day Frances works full time for NZ Police and has been for over 13 years. By night, she’s a
fashion designer, with her brand Frantivity! This is Frances’ fourth year showcasing her work
in a fashion show.
VAE'S FASHION & ACCESSORIES
Designer - Ellaine Maepio
Honiara, Solomon Islands
Ellaine has great pride in her island heritage, blended with rich cultures and traditions, through diverse designs, patterns and colours which is the theme for her collection. This is evident in the beautiful prints and patterns, mostly inspired by the beautiful locally made carvings in the Marovo Lagoon.
Designer - Leiola Finau Rakau
Tongan (Based in Vanuatu)
Leiola originally started with handicraft in 2012 and seven years later, she launched her clothing label with the Royal Polynesian Fashion Show in Auckland. This was her first-ever appearance on an international showcase.
AFA AH LOO
Designer - Afa Ah Loo
Samoan (Based in Utah, USA)
Afa is an award-winning fashion designer who has been published in multiple fashion magazines such as Vogue UK, after he was invited in 2018 by Queen Elizabeth to represent Samoa and show one of his designs in front of the royal family. He was also featured in Elle at the beginning of this year and was one of the contestants to compete in the reality TV show, Project Runway in the USA. He was the first Samoan to compete on the show.