After cancelling this year's event due to tough retail conditions, New Zealand Fashion Week (NZFW) organisers are considering prospects for the future.

NZFW GM Yasmin Farry could not confirm plans for an instalment next year but said scoping and planning is currently underway. Farry confirmed organisers had attempted to pivot with different schedule options this year.  

“It really became apparent when we were getting the same responses from designers we were talking to daily that they are doing it really tough currently and needing to consolidate their resources," Farry said.

“Without a good number of New Zealand designers able to show, it simply wasn’t viable as we didn’t have a compelling programme, befitting of the world-class event that fashion week is.”

The cancellation comes amid a host of designer brand closures in the New Zealand market. Kate Sylvester will shutter her business after 31 years of trade in mid-2025, with designer label Maaike also closing its doors after 15 years alongside newcomers Mina and Hej Hej.  

Last year, Carly Harris Design entered into liquidation after 26 years in business.

Farry said conditions for local designer brands had become more challenging in recent years. 

“Brands and retailers are facing some pretty tough headwinds right now in NZ, the cost of living crisis has meant a decrease in consumer spending across most retail. Smaller brands are closing down and one of our iconic department stores is closing its doors after 144 years. Pretty sobering stuff.

"The industry is faced with another challenge to pivot and relook at current business models and ways of marketing in order to weather yet another storm after the Covid pivot. But kiwis are extremely resourceful, we’ll always deploy the ‘number 8 wire’ mentality.”

NZFW will continue to promote local designers and manufacturers through its channels despite the event cancellation this year.

“We want to strengthen the message that our industry here is strong, unique, creative and it will thrive through these challenging times," Farry said. "The message to get out and shop local, support local makers and move away from fast fashion has never been more important.”

comments powered by Disqus