Add a little glamour to your life and join in the fun and action of the New Zealand Fashion Festival, which kicks off this Friday in the heart of Auckland City. There is a whole host of events - many of them free - that you can take part in. So paint your nails, put on your best frock and step out with style at the most fashionable events on the calendar.
From next Monday through to Friday, Shed 10 on Princes Wharf is the place to be, with five evenings of beauty and fashion seminars where the experts will give you top tips on how to look your best, while every night will also see New Zealand's leading fashion labels show off their new season collections in a host of runway shows. Be quick and book now to get the best seat in the house - and the best goody bags! For more info go to the website above or iticket.co.nz.
Here are some highlights:
The best of Viva on stage - including food writer and World Kitchen host Nici Wickes on fashion & food, tips on how to wear the new season fashion collections, and an exclusive Q&A session with designer Karen Walker (if you have a question for her, email it to firstname.lastname@example.org).
When: Wednesday, February 29, 7pm
Where: Shed 10, Queens Wharf.
How: Buy tickets here.
It's easy to make your treasured garments last longer with a bit of old-fashioned know-how, and the Heritage Homecraft Skills seminar on March 1 will teach useful tips like how to hem a dress, mending and the correct way to wash different textiles and vintage garments. Hosted by the talented Doris de Pont of the New Zealand Fashion Museum, this charming seminar is limited to 12 people.
When: Thursday, March 1, 7pm
Where: St Kevin's Arcade, 179 K Rd
How: To pre-book, email email@example.com.
Held in association with First Thursdays, next week's Blogger Closet Raid will be a kind of very fashionable garage sale with various bloggers selling their wares, whether it be fashion, craft, art or homewares.
When: Thursday, March 1, 6-9pm
Where: Cross St Arcade, 214 K Rd.
The streets of inner-city Auckland will come alive with fashion on Saturday, March 3 with free public fashion shows being held throughout the day, from designer to vintage. From Cherry Bishop's show at 12.30pm (at 500 K Rd) to the Huffer/skatewear show at 5.30pm (at The Basement theatre), to Kathryn Wilson's show at 6pm (at the Atrium, Britomart), it will be a day of inner-city style - make a day of it by heading into town to shop and see some of the season's best fashion.
Want advice on how to make it as a fashion designer? Tips on the best way to get a job at a fashion magazine? The secrets on how to get access to industry events? The Fashion Speed Dating event during the NZ Fashion Festival is your opportunity to meet some of the local industry's most interesting and influential people, from those who work behind the scenes to those in the spotlight, and ask them whatever questions you may have. Insiders who will be there on the night include Viva editor Amanda Linnell, Canvas fashion editor and stylist Dan Ahwa, Jimmy D designer James Dobson, designer Cybele Wiren, photographer Norrie Montgomery, talented fashion business adviser and New Zealand Fashion Museum Trustee Dianne Ludwig, Paula Ryan's product manager Terry Redman and artistic director of Trelise Cooper Group, Andrew Trott. Only 30 places are available. Start preparing your questions now.
When: Friday, February 24, 6pm-8pm
Where: Cross St Arcade, 214 K Rd
How: Email firstname.lastname@example.org or ph (09) 377 5086 to register, or for more information.
ONE NIGHT ONLY!
In addition to Viva's collaboration with Deadly Ponies to release 10 special black calf fur handbags for Shop One Night, the one-night only online shopping event also involves various designers, fashion insiders and bloggers. Our other picks from the night?
* The first 50 pairs of Miss Wilson shoes purchased on the night will receive a gift valued at over $150, in association with Kimberley Crossman.
* Max will offer 20 per cent off when two or more Max@Work items are purchased during the evening.
* Our favourite local street style blog Four Eyes will partner with Black Box Boutique, with 20 per cent off plus a $50 Murad Skincare gift with purchase with the first 20 purchases of selected items.
* Any new season purchase over $400 from new label Liam will receive a free Liam candle, worth $49, in association with bFM's Charlotte Ryan.
Visit from 5pm-midnight on Thursday February 23.
Marilyn Seyb, co-owner of Kimberlys, has opened a new store on Ponsonby Rd, dedicated to her namesake label - set to show at the NZ Fashion Festival on Tuesday February 28. The boutique space, set up like Seyb's home boudoir, showcases her own designs, plus several of her favourite international labels including Love and Liberty, Johnny Was, Desigual, Bleu Blanc and Nolita.
Address: 100 Ponsonby Rd, Ponsonby.
DANCE, DANCE, DANCE
Help kick-start the NZ Fashion Festival this Friday by wearing your favourite designer or outfit and heading to Aotea Square at 1pm, where New Zealand's "most fashionable flashmob" will take place. A simple eight-step dance routine is up on YouTube for you to learn (search "NZ's most fashionable flashmob"), but if you're too cool to dance, you can be part of it too by dressing up - there will be spot prizes for best dressed and more.
When: Friday February 24, 1pm.
Where: Aotea Square, Auckland.
Fashion is showing its support for those affected by the Christchurch quakes by "rebuilding" a Levi's Classic Denim jacket to fundraise support for the Rebuild Christchurch charitable foundation. Several fashion labels and industry figures will customise and "rebuild" a jacket, including designers from World, Zambesi, Nom*D, Sabatini, Miss Crabb, Jimmy D, Ruby, Liam, Deadly Ponies and Loumina. See the results next week, as they are showcased in a video launch - to be auctioned off on Trade Me later this year.
* Herald Online Life & Style Editor Nicky Park will be blogging from the New Zealand Fashion Festival. Follow her on Twitter. We'll also have plenty of video coverage so stay tuned.
The New Zealand Herald and Viva are sponsors of NZ Fashion Festival 2012.