Wellington Fashion Influences

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Heading to Wellington? We give you the run down on the ‘Wellington Look’ and the best buys and designers to help you achieve it.

Layered Up
There is one thing people realise pretty quickly when they come to Wellington, the weather can be a little bit on the random side. Wellington is windy even in summer and as a result you will find that Wellingtonians are a pretty layered up bunch. We are all huge fans of things like light weight crop jackets, merino skivvies and carrying a cover up with us (our mothers would be proud). The result is that our fashion (especially winter wear) has a decidedly de-constructed, layer upon layer look.

Designer Direction: Starfish’s mix of functional shapes and funky direction makes their layered look balanced and great to wear.

1: Jingles jacket, Cubanairs polo and Zephyr skirt from Starfish
2: Norton top, Campbell knitted vest and Raven skirt from Ricochet
3: Zodiac Coat, Hot X cami and Satellite skirt from Starfish

Vivacious Vintage
Wellington is overflowing with vintage and second hand stores, they are literally everywhere. And even when you’re not hunting out the shelves of your favourite haunt you will find that a lot of places like Starfish, Voon, Dandelion and Frutti often feature designs made of vintage fabrics. The result is lots of lush individual looking pieces with an old world feel that mix well with other Wellington style ideas (layering and suiting) to soften and add another sense of dimension.

Designer Direction: Sophie Voon’s delicate silhouettes have an old world vintage feel about them whilst Frutti’s one-off items made of vintage fabric are affordable and stylish.

1: Glass Rose dress from Voon
2: Chopsticks top, Knotworks skirt, Bathing Beauty top, Roses skirt from Voon
3: Creatures of the Garden dress from Voon

Crisp and Clean
Wellington is home to a rather large amount of what are more commonly called ‘suits’. This is no attack against the suit – as a Wellngtonian I LOVE the suit! For those that think it’s like any other town, it’s really not. The fact that the Government is based in Wellington paired with the fact that many large companies and international businesses hold offices here means that corporate dressing is key. However, we like it crisp and clean with a point of difference. This may be the finishing on a blazer the colour of a shoe or the cut of a dress. Corporate does not mean boring in Wellington.

Designer Direction: Miriam Gibson (not pictured here) has recently opened her first Wellington city store on Hunter Street and caters for the nzgirl who wants her suit with a dash of personality.

1: Structured shirt in shell from Workshop
2: Kesia top and Shantell skirt from Robyn Mathieson
3: Tea for Two cowl top, No Ladies Here silk jacket,  Little Edie skirt, Laurie Foon

Funky and Different
Wellington is known as not only the political capital but also the arts capital. With Te Papa, The Dowse’s art collections and some of the best art, design and fashion courses in New Zealand (and some cases internationally), the city is overflowing with new and individual looks. The likes of local independent stores Triangle, Dandylion and Frutti honestly do make it easy to get the look – as you buy one-offs made by local talented folk. But some of our more established designers are known for there sense of quirky style too.

Designer Direction: Deborah Sweeney’s irreverent, eclectic and fun collections are earning her fans overseas as well as at home. I love the one off pieces but also the collective looks that Deborah pulls together – they have a great ‘Wellington’ feel to them.

1: Red Tartan Skirt and Black top from Deborah Sweeney
2: Fascination Frock from Laurie Foon
3: Yellow top and blue bird print party dress from Deborah Sweeney

Anya Merryfield

Deborah Sweeney
Laurie Foon
Robyn Mathieson

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