Jess Wilson |
New Zealand Fashion Week shined its pretty head just over a week ago. After completely ignoring it for that past few years, I’m starting to like it again.
When I was a fashion blogger, I never ignored NZFW. I remember, six years ago, sitting at the dinner table at 9pm anxiously waiting with my iPod Touch for the images of the catwalks to hit the blogs. It’s storytime kids...
When the images of the catwalks arrived, accompanied by their blogger reviews (which were always undoubtedly going to be beaming with positivity), I would sit at the dining table digging, and digging, until I had seen every little detail. I would search through agency’s website to find the names of the frequently appearing models, looking at their measurements to see how they compared with mine. I would research what fabrics were used and analyse what references could have been used in the collections. Finally, I would write up little reviews and post them on my Tumblr and Blogger. They provided a nice break from the usual posts about not being able to afford new clothes.
NZFW was the highlight of my year. It was a fantasy — and a reachable one. It was decided, by myself no less, that one day I would schmooze with the New Zealand fashion elite. I wanted to be a model, but if that failed, a fashion blogger.
Did I ever make it to NZFW? Yes, as a model (you can read my tips to becoming one on page 33). But by then NZFW was becoming a frustratingly repetitive event, and for one reason: bloggers. Back then the only credible people who wrote about the week were a few bloggers. Each year they would photograph the same models and their reviews were always the same unconditional love for the same designers which bothered to pay attention to them. It was boring and depressing. Thanks to blogging, fashion week was becoming a mutual-admiration-society that even I, as a fashion week model, didn’t seem to be a part of, and so, three years ago, I stopped caring about NZFW.
But this year something changed. The bloggers who once ruled NZFW are no longer a singular voice. After being linked to the reviews coming out of the week, I have found that they are far less bias and for once, critical. Catalogue Magazine’s Courtney Sanders wrote a scathing review about RUBY’s tired attempt at humour by closing their show with made-up male actors jokingly dancing in the collection’s clothes. Sunday Magazine’s Karlya Smith called Sean Kelly’s strapless dresses “impractical” and Stuff’s Kim Knight compared a pair of Third Form’s pants to “grandma's oversized pantyhose”. Scandalous! NZFW has become interesting again, and I can’t wait for next year.