Dan Ahwa is fashion editor for Viva and Canvas magazines.

Fashion: Working overtime

New-season separates that go the distance.
Photos / Guy Coombes
Photos / Guy Coombes

In the throes of the working year already, it's an ideal time for to refresh your workplace wardrobe. Look for items that you'll get plenty of mileage out of.

The focus for many local designers this season was a return to sharp tailoring, whether it was the European stylings seen at Zambesi or the undeniable corporate glamour so deftly done by Harman Grubisa.

And while clean-cut, monochromatic separates have been reworked - from classic white shirts to faithful black pants - an injection of subtle jewel tones easily transforms a hum-drum office look into an interesting and commanding one. From local workwear faithful Helen Cherry's intoxicating shades of cyclamen, magenta and turquoise to the cubist colours on offer from Kate Sylvester, the options for eye-catching colour this season are endless.

This season's memo also signals a return to easiness and volume, from billowing blouses to full skirts or pants, worn with languid shirts and relaxed blazers, doing away with the sometimes uncomfortably restrictive pencil skirt and miniskirt lengths that require more thoughtful manoeuvring.

It's an opportunity to feel both free and in control in the workplace. And who doesn't want that? Seamless dressing is made even easier by the fact that flats - specifically lace-up brogues and pointy loafers - have become the new pointy black pump (at least for this season). Sure, the latter will never go out of style, but to look thoroughly modern and ready to go, a pair of polished lace-ups will help get you ahead of the pack.

The looks

Photos / Guy Coombes
Photos / Guy Coombes

Harman Grubisa blazer, $645 and pant $440.
Taylor shirt, $467.
Mi Piaci lace-up shoes, $250.
Moleskine notebook, $40, from Askew.

Photos / Guy Coombes
Photos / Guy Coombes

Twenty-seven Names knit T-shirt, $350.
Harman Grubisa pants, $440.
Mi Piaci loafers, $270.
Alexander Wang leather document bag, $1450, from Workshop.
Sass & Bide aviators $269.

Photos / Guy Coombes
Photos / Guy Coombes

Zambesi blazer, $1115 and pants, $340 (available for pre-order).
Helen Cherry blouse, $398.
Alexander Wang leather document bag, $1450, from Workshop.
Mi Piaci pumps, $230.
London rug by Greg Natale $7063.20, from Designer Rugs.

Photos / Guy Coombes
Photos / Guy Coombes

Zambesi top, $470, (available for pre-order), belt, $185 and leather briefcase, $880. Alexander Wang pumps, $859, from Workshop.
Kate Sylvester brooch (POA).

Photos / Guy Coombes
Photos / Guy Coombes

Maurie & Eveshirt, $149.
Kate Sylvester skirt, $479.
Zambesi belt, $185.


• Askew (09) 378 1414
• Designer Rugs (09) 300 6116
• Harman Grubisa (09) 963 6129
• Helen Cherry (09) 361 3727
• Kate Sylvester (09) 307 3282
Maurie & Eve
Mi Piaci
• Sass & Bide (09) 360 4533
• Taylor (09) 929 4539
• Twenty-seven Names (09) 379 7879
• Workshop (09) 303 3735
• Zambesi (09) 3030 1701

- Canvas

For more fashion go to viva.co.nz.

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