Fashion, Fashion shows

The couture catwalk designs of iD International Emerging Designer Awards 2017

A stand-out Australian emerging designer collection that reinvents archetypal garments including the biker jacket and blazer has won tonight’s 13th annual iD International Emerging Designer Awards held at the Dunedin Railway Station in New Zealand.

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Australian-based Nehma Vitols from Sydney’s University of Technology tonight took out the H&J Smith $6,000 First Place prize with her collection, ‘XXX’ – described by judges as “inspired”, merging new fabric technology with handcraft while deconstructing familiar silhouettes in an entirely unique way. Paper, silk and cotton merge to form hybrid materials that oscillate between two and three dimensions and between garment and sculpture.

“There was so much about it that was great,” says head judge Tanya Carlson.

“There was this amazing dichotomy of opposing states – fluid but structured, flat and 3D, technological yet handcrafted. She used references that we all know – the biker jacket, the trench coat – and then she makes them new.”  

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The judging panel made up of Carlson, NOM*d’s Margi Robertson, Marc Moore from Stolen Girlfriends Club, Australian fashion editor Georgina Safe, and iD’s international guest for 2017 Paulo Melim Andersson say the standard of finalists at this year’s event was very high. An overriding focus of the designers was on the ocean with aquatic inspired collections and a renewed focus on sustainability.

Hosted by ZM’s PJ Harding and Jase Hawkins, 29 international emerging designer collections showed at tonight’s 13th annual event, supported by Otago Polytechnic.

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This year’s winners are:

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The H&J First Prize ($6000) Nehma Vitols, University of Technology, Sydney, Australia (pictured above)

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Laffare Second Place ($4000): Lila John, University of Applied Arts, Vienna, Austria (pictured above)

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Gallery De Nova 3rd Place ($2000): Paul Castro, Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, Australia

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The Fabric Store Award for Excellence in Design worth $3000 (includes $2000 fabric): Tess Norquay, Massey University, Wellington, NZ (pictured above)

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Dunedin’s Golden Centre Mall Most Commercial Collection Prize ($1000): Talia Jimenez University of Technology Sydney, Australia (pictured above)

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The NZME and Viva Editorial Prize (awarded to best NZ collection, pictured above):Megan Stewart, Massey University, Wellington, NZ.

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The Emilia Wickstead Internship: Emily Cameron, Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, Australia. (pictured above)

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Backstage, Dr Margo Barton from the Otago Polytechnic School of Design and a team of students was in charge of managing the Awards, while Dunedin-based salon Klone Hair, led by Danelle and Karl Radel, took charge of the runway hair creations. Makeup looks for the models, supplied by Aart Model Management and 10 international models from the University of Shanghai Engineering Science, were created by the Revlon sponsored makeup team, led by Christal Allpress.

For more information and a full calendar of events visit

iD Dunedin Fashion Week is supported by the Dunedin City Council. 


@iDfashionwk #iDAwards #iDFashion

By Amie Richardson. Photos by Short Film Otago.
23rd March 2017