Designer duo, model Helena Christensen and Camilla Stærk to attend the Melbourne Fashion Festival

STÆRK&CHRISTENSEN, a lifestyle brand co-founded by Danish designer Camilla Stærk and model and photographer Helena Christensen has collaborated with Melbourne brand pared to produce an exclusive STÆRK&CHRISTENSEN+pared eyewear collection.

The Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival is proud to announce that the global launch of STÆRK&CHRISTENSEN+pared eyewear will take place at The Plaza on Monday 5 March, kicking off the Festival’s main runway week. From 5.30pm at The Plaza and online, the country’s most style conscious sunglass-lovers will have first access to purchase from the exclusive three-piece, twelve colour collection titled The Swallows, part of the Festival’s Shop The Runway initiative.

Christensen and Stærk will be attending the Festival March 8th to support the launch of this exclusive eyewear collection. “I’m looking forward to being part of the Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival again – my third time,” Christensen said. “And I’m excited to show everyone the collection of frames that Camilla and I created with pared.” Stærk adds, “It’s very cool that the frames, the first products available on our STÆRK&CHRISTENSEN site, will launch worldwide at the Festival. It has been a pleasure to collaborate with pared to make our designs come to life.”

Pared eyewear was founded in Melbourne in 2012 by husband and wife team, Samantha Stevenson and Edward Baker. The brand, which is sold in major department stores globally, is known for collaborations with Australian fashion brands including Ginger & Smart and more recently, Bec & Bridge.

The brand is worn by international celebrities including Beyoncé and Solange Knowles, Suki Waterhouse, Brad Pitt and home-grown stars including Delta Goodrem and Elyse Knowles. Samantha Stevenson, pared eyewear co-founder and creative director, said: “It was such an honour for Ed and I to work together in executing the 3 frames designed by Helena and Camilla. The designs are very much inspired by Helena and Camilla’s love of their shared homeland – Denmark – and their childhood memories of the Swallow.”

The result is a classic frame, subtly oversized, which abstractly tells the Swallow story through unique golden detailing in three different variations; playing with the silhouette fragments of the swallow bird in light. True to the STÆRK&CHRISTENSEN aesthetic, the designs have a sensual and organic feel – a poetic encounter between classic and modern.

Virgin Australia Melbourne Fashion Festival CEO Graeme Lewsey said, “The Festival is a celebration of fashion, arts and ideas and the STÆRK&CHRISTENSEN+pared eyewear collection truly brings those concepts to life… coupled with the excitement and immediate gratification for consumers of see now, buy now.”

The Plaza, located at the Royal Exhibition Building and Melbourne Museum precinct, is all about entertainment and play and through 5 March – 10 March will host Melbourne’s liveliest fashion party at Australia’s largest fashion event. Further information available at vamff.com.au and tickets are on sale now from ticketek.com.au/vamff and sold online at www.paredeyewear.com/staerkandchristensen from February 28, 2018.

Source: STÆRK&CHRISTENSEN


The Commonwealth Fashion Exchange exhibition launches at Australia House | Eco-Age x Matchesfashion.com

Livia and Colin Firth, Nadja Swarovski, Nigel Gosse, Ulric Jerome and Noella Coursaris Musunska have hosted a private reception at Australia House to celebrate and showcase the designers and artisans from across the Commonwealth’s 53 countries that have participated in the inaugural Commonwealth Fashion Exchange (CFE), celebrated at Buckingham Palace by The Duchess of Cambridge and The Countess of Wessex.

The reception saw guests such as Livia and Colin Firth, Lily Cole, Jasmine Hemsley, Nicola Roberts and many more come together to celebrate the exhibition’s official opening. The design looks showcased will be displayed at the new exhibition at Australia House on the Strand ahead of The Commonwealth Heads of State Summit in April.

In partnership with Swarovski, The Woolmark Company, MATCHESFASHION.COM and NEST, The Commonwealth Fashion Exchange celebrates fashion’s handprint in providing a common language to create new networks and connections.

The exhibition brings the Commonwealth together to showcase a wealth of design and artisan fashion talent across its 53 countries. Participating designers and artisans collectively represent all 53-Commonwealth member countries in a major new initiative ahead of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in London this April.

The free two-week exhibition will allow members of the public to see these unique, one of a kind items from selected design talent including major names such as Kit X representing Australia, Karen Walker representing New Zealand, Bibi Russell representing Bangladesh and Burberry and Stella McCartney representing the UK*. Each of the 31 looks – including 14 that feature wool – was created using the Green Carpet Challenge®(GCC®) Principles of Sustainable Excellence*.

The exhibition will run from 22nd February until 6th March at Australia House, London.

Source: Commonwealth Fashion Exchange


Karen Walker takes part in the Commonwealth Fashion Exchange

For the first time, the 53 countries of the Commonwealth have come together to showcase a wealth of design and craft. The Commonwealth Fashion Exchange, created and managed by Eco-Age and developed in partnership with Swarovski, The Woolmark Company and MATCHESFASHION.COM with the support of the Commonwealth Fashion Council and the British Fashion Council, celebrates the talent, power and potential of artisans and designers and encourages new partnerships, trade networks and sustainability.

The project has been created to help mark the occasion of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Summit being held in London in April 2018. Designers, including Karen Walker representing New Zealand, and Stella McCartney and Burberry for the United Kingdom, have partnered with artisans to create one-of-a-kind looks that were showcased at a special reception at Buckingham Palace in London during Fashion Week this evening. The reception was hosted by Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge and Sophie, Countess of Wessex.

There were over 300 guests in attendance from the worlds of fashion, politics and the arts including Anna Wintour and Naomi Campbell. Karen Walker has partnered with craftswomen from the Cook Islands, the Kūki ‘Airani Creative Māmās based in Māngere in Auckland, to create a gown that combines her chic-meets-eccentric handwriting with traditional Cook Islands tivaivai. Karen Walker and 73-year-old Māmā Tukua Turia, the lead artisan from the Kūki ‘Airani Creative Māmās were in attendance at Buckingham Palace as their collaboration was unveiled amongst 30 other dresses.

Karen says, “Being part of such a significant project has been a really special experience for me and seeing all the designs together at Buckingham Palace, alongside my new lifelong friend Tukua, was the icing on the cake. This collaboration is one of my career highlights and I’m so proud to have represented New Zealand and worked with Tukua’s beautiful tivaivai skills in this way.”

Tivaivai are central to Cook Islands culture. Whilst they are, in essence, bed coverings, they are actually much more than that. They are a manifestation of love and honour and are gifted to family and community to mark special occasions. They take several months to make and are seldom sold. They are the paramount form of gifting and women say, “You are not a woman without tivaivai.”. They are love in a physical form and to be gifted a tivaivai is to be literally wrapped in the love of the person (or people) who made it for you.

The Karen Walker x Kūki ‘Airani Creative Māmās tivaivai dress is a formal, strapless gown with a complex bow and pleated bodice and six metres of fabric gathered and tucked into a full-length skirt that drapes across the floor. It’s crafted in dusty pink Italian wool flannel and is covered in claret-coloured embroidered flowers. The silhouette and graphics suggest a tall tree surrounded by flowers.

“There’s such a freshness to the collaboration” Karen says, “and what grew throughout the project was an enormous sense of awe, working with this team of artisans on a completely handcrafted piece, using skills that have been lovingly passed from generation to generation. For me, it was even more about sharing in the history, culture and meaning of tivaivai than it was about creating a dress. It’s been a very special project for us.”

73-year-old Māmā Tukua Turia, the lead artisan from the Kūki ‘Airani Creative Māmās, echoes the sentiment. For Tukua, who was born in Aitutaki, one of the 15 Cook Islands, creating tivaivai is intrinsic to what it is to be a Cook Islands woman. “Every design tells a story,” Tukua says, “And as I’m working I feel like I am in a forest of all the beautiful flowers and leaf shapes that are so symbolic of my home.”

The opportunity to present Cook Islands craft and culture to the world has been “An empowering experience” Tukua says, not just for herself but for her whole team. The Māmās who worked on this project are 60, 68, 73, 75, and 91. Whilst working on this project, the tight-knit group of talented women split their time between the home of one of their members in Māngere and Karen’s design room in Grey Lynn, singing, laughing and talking about life together as they embroidered an array of flowers in claret thread onto the dusty-pink wool-flannel using 12 different kinds of tivaivai stitches.

The atmosphere has been one of heartfelt community. “I’ve loved getting to know Karen and her team,” Tukua says, “Sewing tivaivai is all about enjoying time with the ladies, working together, singing together and learning from eachother and it was a real pleasure to have the Karen Walker team join us.”

The final result, the Karen Walker x Kūki ‘Airani Creative Māmās tivaivai dress, along with the 30 other dresses created for this project, was celebrated during London Fashion Week at a reception at Buckingham Palace this evening. Next, the dresses will move to a public exhibition at Australia House on February 21st, and other locations in London where the exhibition will be open to the public in the run up to the Commonwealth Heads of Government Summit in April 2018.

Source: Commonwealth Fashion Exchange


Puma x Cara Delevingne's new sneaker

PUMA collaborates with Cara Delevingne to launch an all-new women’s TSUGI Jun as part of Puma’s new SS18 collection. Fusing modernity, technology and traditions, the TUSGI Jun adds progressive flavour to the collection by bringing a new wave of comfort and aesthetic to sport-inspired streetwear.

More than just functionality, the TSUGI Jun boasts a minimal style in a beautifully feminine pink and white colour palette. The TSUGI’s signature side lacing system and unique ribbed tooling are kept intact for the women’s only silhouette. An engineered elastic ensures a secure heel lock down and the addition of premium leather panels on the sides provide mid foot support and enhanced stability.

RRP $170, available now in PUMA stores (Chatswood and Melbourne Central), www.puma.com.au and select retailers.
Source: Puma


Chinese New Year: Celebrating The Bally St. Bernard

To celebrate the Lunar New Year Bally presents an exciting capsule for men, inspired by the Year of the Dog. The collection is composed of a series of pieces featuring Bally’s very special Swiss mascot, the St. Bernard.

The quintessential dog of Switzerland is combined with the cutesy, cartoony style of popular Far Eastern toys in an ode to Chinese New Year.
Accessories and small leather goods are available alongside a pair of embossed slip-on sneakers to celebrate this important milestone.

An exclusive selection of pieces to set off the New Year, including leather bags, everyday accessories, and new season ready-to-wear are also available for women.

Source: Bally