Two Samoan designers, Peter Tamasese and Oli Laufale, have been selected by fashion production Oxford Fashion Studios to feature their collections in its’ line up as part of New York Fashion Week.
Peter’s line Peter Henry boasts a stunning array of colourful and unique resort wear using ethnic prints that reflect his Samoan and indigenous cultures.
Oli, owner of Oliveta Creations describes her collection as ‘the modern vintage’.
Her line includes pleated chiffon dresses, lace peices and delicate silk garments carefully detailed and influenced by her favourite 1950’s era.
The exciting opportunity came about after both designers collection’s had featured at the Pacific International Runway last year in Sydney.
Director of Pacific International Runway Failepou Penny says she was contacted soon after the event by Oxford Fashion scouts in London who were interested in showcasing 12 Pacific designers from the night at various fashion capital weeks: New York – Milan – Paris – London.
“This is what Pacific International Runway is all about,’ says Ms Penny.
“It’s not just a one night event. It’s about giving opportunities to our designers to be explored and pushing our boundaries in being acknowledged that we, from the Pacific, are more than capable of delivering to a grand scale if not better.”
New York Fashion Week which kicks off today is a dream come true for Ms Laufale, who worked extra hours to save money to get to the Big Apple. She says she is grateful to her family and her church for helping to raise the funds for her trip.
“I was determined to come to New York and God made a way, ” she explains.
“Perserverance got me here. I arrived on Monday and the energy here is amazing! Just to be here to showcase in one of my favourite cities NYC is mind blowing.”
A prestigious invitation from Oxford Fashion Studios is a huge deal.
The renowned fashion runway has produced 95 runway shows so far, presenting collections by over 525 designers from 61 countries.
Attendees to their shows are usually some of the biggest names in the industry and have included Vogue, Harpaars Bizaare and Elle magazine editors; prominent fashion bloggers and celebrities.
As part of the Pacific International Runway objective, Ms Penny has been busy working with other designers in co-ordinating trainings and workshops for students in the Pacific.
She says that New York Fashion Week is only the beginning of an international movement for Pacific designers.
“Next year, 10 designers will travel with Oxford Fashion Studio’s to do the Milan and Paris showcases. And we also hope to take some of our models with us.
“We at Pacific International Runway are delighted with Oli and Peter’s opportunities. When things like this happen, I can only say that we are moving in the right direction.”
This year’s Pacific International Runway in Sydney will be held at The Star, Oct 21st. Follow them on Facebook for ticket details coming soon.