• Women in Business: Georgie Malyon

    Posted by Brooke Fairgray

    Georgie Malyon is a bad arse babe; found sipping coffee on the fly between floral deliveries or tinkering in her new creative space (and store) Green Point Studios in Grey Lynn. She has a dark witt, inspiring style and underlying love for flowers. She took this love and applied it to print photography.

    One of the four florists we have collaborated with for our spring image project Primavera. We chat to Georgie about flowers, and art practice. We can’t help but be inspired by her style along the way….

    Georgie Malyon for Saben Primavera floral collaboration to celebrate spring

    Saben Primavera a celebration of spring floral arrangment by Georgie Malyon

    What are you known for?  

    I guess I’m known for my art work. My works reflect my own take on flowers. (I’m a Florist and I make art involving floral arrangements with various processes.)

    What drew you to art and flowers?

    I would say my obsession with art and flowers started early in my life. I watched and learnt a lot from my mother who worked as a graphic designer in the 80s, an era when everything was done by hand without an iMac in sight.  I would spend afternoons at her work and at her home studio, watching her at her old-school drawing board with 100s of marker pens, sheets of Letraset and every shape of ruler, set square and T square. My mum would take me to the art gallery to see shows and bought me books on artists and on crafty subjects that had taken my fancy that month or year. I was always encouraged to draw and to be creative, although I wouldn’t say I was pushed to make and create, it pretty much came naturally.

    All I ever really wanted to do was make art. 

    One of my first flower memories was pressing pansies between the stacks of National Geographic’s in the front sunroom (which was my mums home studio). I see flowers as just another medium, like paint or pencils. I think of flowers in a different way, not just to be made into a bouquet for a vase.  In saying that I still adore a classic bouquet in a beautiful vase ah the contradictions! Buts that’s all part of the creative process. 

    I was drawn to floristry by my stepsister Jane. She had her own little shop on the corner of St Kevin’s Arcade, and as a teenager I would hang out at the shop after school, drawing the flowers then taking home old roses to dry. I had a wall of dried roses which I had made in to a shrine, with skulls, vintage dolls and with a stack of incense and candles. I was certainly inspired by flowers and by age 17. I knew I wanted to be a florist.

    There was no turning back, I was addicted to flowers.

    Where do you take inspiration from for your floral designs?

    When it comes to my art I take inspiration from artists that use flowers, not just fresh flowers but in other mediums.  I look at different cultures and how they use flowers in daily life and especially as they relate to their cultural rituals. The idea is that flowers are not just pretty to look at but they have significance and purpose. 

    When it comes to making bouquets for a client or dealing with a client for a special event, I always go with my intuition and get a feeling for what is required by asking questions about the person who will be receiving them, or I find out what it is they want to achieve, not just what their favourite colour is. I like to cater to the clients’ needs. 

     Do you feel that there is a guiding philosophy behind your work?

    To continue to make work that I want to see and quality flowers that I would want to receive.

    What are some of your favourite flowers on the market now? What is your favoured type of arrangement?

    I love phalaenopsis orchids for luxury and flowering Peiris aka Lily of the valley for texture.

     When and why did you decide to start capturing flowers?

    I have been taking photos and arranging flowers and for a long time, I have just always loved looking at beautiful and things and arranging my collections of curious to beautiful settings. I wanted to be able to share it will other people and see what I see. 

    In 2008 I started taking photos of my collection of animal skulls, religious statues and taxidermy surrounded in flowers inspired by the Day of the Dead and the alters that are made during the celebrations. 

    In 2010 I took an interest in making moulds, time my partner Tim worked in the film industry in art department and taught me to make moulds of skulls. This is where the mandala flat lay series came from. My friends really encouraged me to get my work out there. That’s when I got in touch with Elliot at endemicworld on Ponsonby Road. endemicworld specialise in art prints and I have been dealing with Elliot for over four years now.

    As my work has evolved and the technical side of my work has got higher I have used other methods of making my art.

    I don’t consider myself a photographer, rather my work is about the processes, about the installation and the concept. Floral art. The camera is the tool I need to capture the moment. My work is about the relationship people have with flowers and the rituals they use flowers for. 

    Where do you sell your limited-edition prints?

    I sell them mainly through endemicworld gallery and store is located at 62 Ponsonby Road. I sell from on my own website georgiemalyon.com and in store at Greenpoint, 566 Great North Road, Grey Lynn. I also sell through The Vivian Gallery in Matakana. The Grey Place gallery in Grey Lynn have some limited editions available to view and purchase. 


    What has creating your prints led to?   

    It has led to solo exhibitions, collaborations and meeting other artists and florists and forming friendships. It opens conversations that you may not have had if there wasn’t, that connection people make when they like what you do. Making art inspires me to constantly think creatively and leads me to think about the next project. Which leads us in to the next question.

    Congrats on the opening of Greenpoint studios; What is it like having your own store and studio?! 

    Thank you! Yeah, it’s been a process where I’m still learning, and it is a lot of hard work. I’m always thinking of the next thing to do to make the space interesting. I have loved meeting people in my new neighbourhood of Grey Lynn. It has been great connecting to the locals and their genuine support has meant the world to me. Also, I have some amazing friends and family who are helping me along the way! This is a friendly reminder to shop and support local and small businesses! I truly now know the value of this. The space is always evolving. I have flowers but also lots of interesting plants, Art Print a small selection of jewellery that I have designed and jewellery designed and made by Ami from Brimstone 

    Tell me about your creative process for our Primavera collab. Did it start from the handbag, or do you start with the flowers and then incorporate the handbag?

    It started with the bags colour palette being navy, brass and brown tones. I decided to go the classic route and use the this as my guide. I used gold and navy-blue Spray paint, I painted some deep velvet red Colombian roses. Chocolate cymbidiums, dusky blue sea-holly for texture. Lots of lush foliage. 

    I probably took the brief too literal to make a bouquet in a bag, but sometime classic and elegant works but of course if you look closely there is a little twist.

    geogrie malyon for Saben primavera collaboration to celebrate spring

    Georgie <alyon wearing Saben Matilda handbag

    Georgie Malyon for Primavera collaboration with Rebe and Tilly in prussian

     Are you loving on your new Saben handbag?

    Yes! It’s my constant companion. The perfect going to see a band, nabbing my can’t-live-without coffee, or going out for dinner. It is perfect to throw it over the shoulder chuck in your phone, keys wallet in and you’re off.  I have just been on holiday in Bali and used it every day. The bag is so cute, that even a monkey tried to steal it. (Somewhat terrifying)

    TO see more from Georgie follow her on Instagram @georgiemalyon  and check out her new space @greenpoint.studio you can also shop her prints here: https://www.endemicworld.com/artists/georgie-malyon/

    Georgie wears Camden and Matilda in portraits above.

    We LOVE Georgie’s style, she also sells a collection of jewellery in her studio. Easy to see why her hand-candy is on point. Georgie wears: Company of strangers - Pawnshop Ring, Meadowlark -Thai Garnet Deco cocktail ring, Brimstone Jewellery - Black Sapphire Memento Mori ring 

     

    Outside of this shoot she wears Mae handbag in season-favourite python emboss black with guntmetal hardware.

    Shop Georgie's edit below:

  • Women in Business: Lucy of Lu Diamond Flowers

    Posted by Brooke Fairgray

    To celebrate Spring and our Primavera image project we caught up with a few of our favourite florists, starting with Lucy of Lu Diamond Flowers...

    Lu is such a honey, the kind of girl you could become fast-friends with. Unflappable, cool calm and collected, usually found with her arms full of bouquets or babies as she juggles her floral styling business with twin daughters Goldie and Delilah (6 months).

    Lucy of Lu Diamond Flowers for Saben Primavera image project

    Tell us a little about how you got into floristry...

    I’ve always loved flowers and wanted to learn more about them. It started out as a hobby - little side project. I would often photograph my very amateur arrangements and realised that my floral skills needed some work so started practising and playing with flowers when ever I had a free minute and it quickly become a paying hobby.

    What for you has been the most exciting thing you've done with flowers?

    Oh good question… There have been lots of highlights since I started working in the floral industry...collaborations with NZ brands like yourself doing photoshoots, building installations, packing in elaborate events...it’s all been pretty exciting! But I think building a floral cave for Ecoya a few years back was probably my first biggest and exciting job, there were about 10 van loads of Ivy!!

    What was it like working on the Saben spring project?

    FUNNN!! I love been given a project that lets me have creative control...It’s when I do my best work as I don't feel restricted… Plus I never wear make-up so enjoyed having that done for the portrait series too!

    How did your beautiful arrangement come about?

    I'm a big fan of colour when it comes to working with flowers and do my best to let the natural product shines in it's best light.

    I felt that the soft pinks, lilac, red and white tones and would sit nicely against the white leather while complimenting it nicely rather than out shining the bag. I use A LOT of roses in soft dusky colours so whatever floral that is in season that is lush with frilly petals is my go to. Carnations, anemones, mini cymbidiums and anthuriums all have that full lush heavy petal look and feel. Perfect for a beautiful arrangement that is has texture and depth but not "too busy or overthought"

    You've worked within the fashion industry before, what do you like about working with fashion clients?

    I love clothing, fashion and great branding; so I think it has just been a natural marriage with Lu Diamond Flowers aligning itself with so many great clothing brands. I’ve always been really interested in photography and creating an end product that is not only visual but also something that you can enjoy in the flesh, a concept of which I think I have bonded over with fashion clients.

    Do you approach your floristry work in the same way you approach the other facets in your life, such as photography, or motherhood?

    Yeah I guess I do. I’ve never really thought about it like that. I don't like to over think things but do like to use my time wisely...like you mentioned above I’m not a flapper. All facets of my life - work and personal are all aimed at creating a positive experience for myself and others which I guess shows in my work ethic and personal home life.

    We can’t go past the wedding topic... It’s a big one, so just quickly - For someone at the very start of their wedding flower journey – do you have any pieces of advice for them BEFORE they approach their florist?

    Do some floral home work on florists that suit you and your wedding vision/ style. There are A LOT of florists with very different styles. And don't get caught up on the Pinterest wedding scene - be original and be yourself!

    Tell us about the twins!

    Delilah + Goldie were born February this year... I still can’t believe I have twins, my days are filled with moments where I’m like “what the hell - I have two babies”. It’s been a slap-in-the-face styled introduction to motherhood but I LOVE it, even when I’m having a shit day.

    They are very sweet, chatty yet relaxed little girls who have shattered my dreams of becoming a professional moocher. They are identical but are quite different in their appearance and personalities which I love.

    How are you managing the juggle between business and babies?

    Haha. Not very well to be completely honest. I’m lucky I have amazing clients who have been super supportive and understanding with me becoming a mum and not being so readily available on a week to week basis.

    I have managed to squeeze in two weddings plus a few smaller projects since they were born... I am planning on pumping up my hours in the new year which I’m super excited about but I reckon it might be quite hard when the time comes; the girls are glued to each one of my hips 24/7. My hat goes off to every working mum with children.

    AND what is next for you, both in business, and as a family?

    I have some exciting projects in the pipe line, one with an ace photographer. With the shift in my personal life there are going to some exciting changes with Lu Diamond Flowers with my creative output....watch this space! PLUS the family and I are off to Bali this month to surf, eat and relax....and hopefully get a little sleep!

    Lucy’s Top Tips for working with flowers:

    1: BUY FRESH! If flower heads are looking already quite open and soft they are OLD... Choose tight buds so you get longer lasting flowers

    2: BUY LOCAL, support your local florists and growers. Ask your florist what flowers have been grown in NZ as opposed to imported flowers.

    3: I hate cold baths! So do flowers, pop them in warm water and re-cut their stems.

      4: Sometimes less is more, buying too many different colours and varieties of flowers can be harder to arrange. If you keep it simple you have a better chance of nailing a bouquet or vase arrangement.

      5: STOP AND SMELL THE ROSES! if you happened to walk by a house with a beautiful home grown rose or any flower really, make sure you stop to smell and enjoy it. Mother nature is pretty cool.

       For floral inspo stay in touch @ludiamondflowers 

      Lucy wears Saben Mae handbag in white from the latest Exhale collection, paired with aptly named Poppy coloured Tilly for her Primavera arrangment. A celebration of spring!

      Lucy Houghton of Lu Diamon Flowers for the Saben Primavera spring collaboration

      Lucy Houghton with family for the women in business interview series

      Lucy Houghton for Saben primavera spring collaboration

      Saben Primavera spring collaboration for Lu Diamond Flowers

       

    1. Saben Celebrates Spring with a Floral Collaboration; Introducing Primavera

      Posted by Brooke Fairgray

      Primavera

      Spring Image Project / Photography: Mike Rooke

      Bidding farewell to what feels like a long, wet winter, Saben collaborate with four floral designers to celebrate spring. "Primavera," the Italian word for spring, roughly translates to mean "first true." The first true full season of the Gregorian calendar, but also the first true chance that flowers have to bloom

      To help inspire some spring mood, the four designers have created five beautiful floral compositions made up of seasonal blooms. And what's more, each bouquet is paired with, and inspired by its own beautifully designed handbag from the newest Saben collection, Exhale.

      “For me, the design is always about more than just the product itself, asides from function, it is a form of expression. I love that the arrangements have become a standalone art form. It is exciting to be collaborating with these floral designers to revel in the new season and celebrate the uniqueness, both of the flowers and of each handbag” says Roanne.

      The floral work is very natural, flowing, textural, calm, elegant, sophisticated and unpretentious. All synonymous with Saben design, it is hard to distinguish if we are discussing the handbags or the flowers.

      Saben staple Big Sis’ Tilly in chestnut becomes the foundation for Eden Kersten, head florist at Auckland’s The Botanist arrangement who pairs slipper orchids and begonia leaves with the bag. “As the details in these flowers are just incredible, I feel like they are not your stereotypical flower and they showcase so much personality. I love how each bloom is different, and how the heads stand proudly on top of their furry stems” Says Eden.

      Inspired by the project, Eden takes on a second arrangement and pairs oversized Saben Luna tote with hellebore flowers in two varieties to explore scale and volume “they look stunning on mass, with the layered petals and unusual frilly details.” Says Eden.

      Tina Heffer, owner designer of The Birdcage in Te Awamutu was paired with Cami in linen as she likes to be inspired by the natural offering “I am a bit of whatever takes me at the time.” Texture, balance and colour are explored, “the tones were perfect to pair with Cami and the succulents & gum add unexpected interest and texture” Tina explains.

      Georgie Malyon more renown for her darker take on the art form, creates a bouquet inspired by new Saben Rebe handbag and the moodiness of the prussian colour. Inspired by the internal lining, Malyon introduces bronze detailing. Texture and balance are pushed to a sculptural and painterly dimension with her use of spray paint. Floral design is for her a continuation of a long and diverse art practice.

      I use a lot of paint and other mediums combined with fresh and dried flowers to create my own floral style. I wanted to bring my love of flower play to the shoot. My style is more is more” Georgie Says

      As a big fan of colour in her work, it is no wonder Lucy of Lu Diamond Flowers was paired with Mae handbag in a crisp white and Saben staple Tilly in aptly named poppy red. “I love colours and lush frilly petals. For this arrangement I used carnations, anemones, mini cymbidiums and anthuriums - they all have that full lush heavy petal look and feel. Perfect for a beautiful arrangement that has texture and depth without being "too busy or overthought". Says Lucy of her work.

      Saben will host a variety of in store and online activations with each florist over spring. The Exhale collection is available in Saben stockists throughout NZ and Australia, in the Saben flagship store and online. Prices from $65 to $589.

      Saben Spring Primavera collab with Georgie Malyon flowers

      Lucy Houghton, Lu Diamond Flowers inspired by Saben Mae handbag in white $420 and Tilly wallet in poppy $250

      Saben celebrates Spring with Primavera collab with Tina Heffer of The Birdcage Te Awamutu

      Tina Heffer, The Birdcage NZ inspired by Saben Cami handbag in linen $420

      Saben spring primavera floral collab with Georgie Malyon inspired by Rebe handbag in prussian navy

      Georgie Malyon, Greenpoint Studios inspired by Saben Rebe handbag in prussian $469

      Saben Spring Floral Collaboration with Eden Kersten head florist at The Botanist featuring Juno Tote

      Eden Kersten, The Botanist inspired by Saben Juno tote $489

      Saben Spring Floral Collaboration with Eden Kersten head florist at The Botanist

      Eden Kersten, The Botanist inspired by Saben Big Sis’ Tilly in chestnut $350

      For more details follow us on instagram @sabenltd

      Shop the PRIMAVERA edit

    2. Women in Business: Ashleigh Scott from The Facialist

      Posted by Brooke Fairgray

      To most, a facial is an opulent treat, and for others; a mandatory part of their health and skin care regime. No matter where you fall in the spectrum, a facial has the undeniable ability to bring you back to the present whilst nourishing one of the largest organs in your body. Your skin is a direct reflection of your health (diet, stress, lifestyle) and something Ashleigh Scott is innately passionate about.

      Founder of The Facailist and Tribeca Skin Tonics, Ashleighs passion for skin health is evident, more-over, she has created a space for women to feel welcome and relaxed to re-center and assist in their health and skin care journey. It is a privilege to partner with Ashleigh for our Women in Business portrait series, as we chat about business, beauty, and taking care of the skin you're in... 

      Ashleigh Scott The Facialist for Saben Women in Business portrait series

      Can you give us the low down on your journey to date? (Where did you start and what has led you here.)

      I started working as a beauty therapist in Auckland – I did all treatments from waxing to nails to facials and even more invasive treatments like laser and peels! I moved to London and worked there for a couple of years where I got to experience a different side to the beauty industry. When I moved home I couldn’t go back into a job like I had before I went to London, so I created a job for myself. I started by renting a small studio underneath a hair salon. I was only there a couple of months before leasing a space in City Works Depot. I slowly built the salon, trained and hired a few staff and then last year moved into a bigger space in City Works.

      Tell us more about The Facialist

      The Facialist is a boutique facial spa. We follow a holistic philosophy and use all natural and organic skincare. Our philosophy is about working with the skin – feeding it with the best plant botanicals to get it functioning healthily and glowing. We don’t use any harsh chemicals or machines; our facials are purely massage based. We also treat the body through our bespoke massages.

      Are you seeing more customers for ‘treats’ or those on greater skin journey?

      Both! We have a loyal following of regular clients, we work closely with our clients to help them achieve their skin goals. Equally we love treats! We sell a lot of vouchers, it’s the best gift you can give somebody!

      You focus on experience just as much as the treatments being provided. How important is offering a relaxing and indulgent experience to you?

      SO important. I think the overall experience is just as (if not more) important as the treatment itself. From the beautiful space you walk into, the smells, the music, the heated beds and heavy duvet to the treats you get after your treatment whilst relaxing in our lounge. Its so important for me to create a space where people can come and escape daily life and indulge their senses.

      What is your fave treatment?

      The Yoga Facial! This is a facial I created exclusively for The Facialist. Its an intensive facial massage that works to lift and tone facial muscles, boost circulation, detoxify and brighten the skin. It’s like a gym workout for your face!

      What is the best part about your job

      OMG! I just love the variety of it. One day I’m in the salon working on clients, another day I’m in our production kitchen making product or training our staff or other clinics, or spending all day packing orders and doing mindless admin tasks. I never get bored of any of them because every day is so different. I love that!

      Starting your own business is major! What gave you the courage to go out and make it happen?

      I was young and I had nothing to lose so it didn’t feel that major at the time! Now I don’t know how I had the guts to start this, I was only 23!!! But like I said above, there were no jobs for me back in Auckland so I felt my only option was to create a job for myself.

      Where did the inspo for Tribeca Skin Tonics stem from?

      I started by mixing a few products for my regular clients both for in-treatments and for them to use at home. It felt like I was onto something, I couldn’t find another product one the market to fill this need so I decided to put a label on it and turn it into a brand! It has evolved so much since I started, and I am so excited about where it’s going. We’re working on some really exciting products at the moment!!

      Do you have an absolute favourite product within the range?

      I love them all! But my number one product is Glow. It’s such a beautiful nourishing oil that’s perfect for all skins, it really does make your skin GLOW!

      In your time as a beauty therapist have attitudes to skin care, appearance medicine and cosmetic surgery changed very much?

      So much. It’s an ever-changing industry. I have really tried to not follow the trends as I believe it’s really important to following your intuition and philosophy. Its so easy to get caught up in hype and the excitment of a new innovation and lose sight of what is true to your philosophy and brand.

      There is an English proverb: “Beauty is only skin deep” What is your take on this?

      I may be swaying from the direct meaning of this proverb but I see it literally - the way that we look at the skin and what is happening on the surface of the skin is a direct reflection on the gut and what is happening internally. That’s why it is so important to treat skin holistically.

      What is your daily skin care regime?

      I am very low maintenance. I don’t believe it a lot of fuss – I follow a minimalist philosophy in many areas of my life, but also with my skincare. In the morning I soak my skin with water, followed by a hydrating mist, serum and my Tribeca oil. In the evening I cleanse with an oil or cream cleanser and do the same again.

      We know that our eating habits (among other things) can affect our skin, what are some foods that are great for your skin?

      The vital nutrients for skin health are zinc, vitamin c, vitamin a, b complex, essential fatty acids and water.  Many of these nutrients you can get from food, but some you do need to supplement for in order to get adequate amounts. Zinc for example is near imporrible to get through diet so most people will need a supplement.

      And what about food to avoid?

      Foods that congest the skin are things like chocolate, cheese, ice cream, cream  (any full cream dairy products), meats high in saturated fat (esp mince and sausages), fried foods and takeaways, peanuts and peanut butter and protein powders and drinks.  Foods that are inflammatory to the skin are caffeine, alcohol, oranges and strawberries. If you suffer from and skin conditions it is important to avoid these foods.

      Advice for people battling skin issues?

      Too many, I don’t know where to begin. Each skin issue is very different but mainly I would say look at what’s going on inside the body. So many skin issues stem from an internal imbalance and just treating topically isn’t enough.

      Skin care tips and tricks?

      My favourite is cleansing - always double cleanse in the evening and don’t cleanse in the morning. Also apply serums and moisturisers directly onto damp skin for deeper hydration.

      Our latest collection is inspired by the journey to find time. Time, space and mindfulness as the ultimate luxury. We love that this is intuitively part of The Facialist experience. Such a treat to have you be part of our Women in Business portrait series. Thank you so much.

      We can’t help but be inspired by your style along the way. What drew you to the Milly handbag? Are you enjoying wearing it?

      I love it! I try to follow a minimilist philsophy in my life but I tend to always carry so much crap around with me! Milly is the perfect size that I can fit everything I need but not so big I throw the kitchen sink into! I also love that I can wear it cross body so when I’m running around its so easy. I’ve been using it everyday lately and it was great when I was travelling the other week.

      Ashleigh Scott from The Facialist for Saben Women in Business portrait series

       

      TREAT YOURSELF WITH SABEN & THE FACIALIST:

      We are so thrilled to announce that we will be hosting The Facialist in store for a two day pop up. The first 20 purchases in store from September 17th will receive a complimentary express yoga facial *valued at $89 * later in the month. Simply reserve your preferred time with the Saben team, and together with Ashleigh and The Facilist therapists we look forward to welcoming you back for 20 mins of utter relaxation and skin therapy.*

      *conditions apply, head in store 133 Ponsonby Rd for more details

      Ashleigh Scott The Facialist for Saben Women in Business portrait series

       

    3. Women in Business: The sisters behind FashioNZ

      Posted by Brooke Fairgray

      How is the end of August already?! NZFW is upon us and FashioNZ is your all-access pass! As the official online media partner for NZFW, FashioNZ will be bringing you all the news and announcements, as well as interviews and stories you won’t find anywhere else. They will have full coverage of every show for the week including galleries, reviews, beauty notes and all the action from on and off the runway.

      We catch up with the team behind making it all happen. The second in our Women in Business portrait series, it is a pleasure to introduce FashioNZ Editor, Evelyn with her sister and business partner Carolyn.

      Carolyn and Evelyn of FashioNZ for Saben Women in Business portrait series

      Carolyn and Evelyn of FashioNZ for Saben Women in Business portrait series1

      Follow along @Fashionz.co.nz and stay up to date https://fashionz.co.nz/ 

      How long have you been at the helm and can you share a bit your journey getting there?

      E & C: Thank you, we’re so excited to be celebrating 20 years of FashioNZ. Evelyn had been reading the site since the beginning and had written for the site on and off since 2011. She became editor in October 2015 and we both took over as the new owners in March 2016. Carolyn was based in Brisbane at the time and moved back home last April to work on FashioNZ. It’s been a busy two and a half years as we relaunched the site in its current incarnation in November 2016 and have been redefining what we do and growing the team again. We’re really pleased with how things are going and the huge amount of support we’ve had from the fashion industry here in NZ.
       
      Partnering with NZFW is major, what does this mean for FashioNZ and for you personally?

      E: We were thrilled when NZFW approached us with the idea earlier in the year. We’ve really enjoyed working with the wonderful team there and they have been really supportive of us which has been great. For FashioNZ it’s fantastic recognition and personally I’m thrilled about it.
       
      C: It has been such an honour partnering with NZ Fashion Week! The build-up and work behind the scenes to get to August 27th has been phenomenal and such a pleasure to work with such an amazing and talented team of people.
       
      What will your focus be at NZFW?

      E & C: The shows are our focus of the week, we’ll be delivering full galleries and reviews from every show on the NZFW trade schedule and daily highlights from Fashion Weekend. Our site will be constantly updated as will our social media so if you want to know what’s happening at fashion week you definitely want to be checking FashioNZ.


      When did you attend your first NZFW and what’s your standout memory from it?

      E: My first NZFW show was Yvonne Bennetti in 2006 which I attended as a guest and I loved it. I didn’t yet work in fashion (that didn’t happen until 2008), but I remember knowing it was what I wanted to do I just wasn’t sure how to go about it yet. I don’t remember much of the show itself now aside from the velvet and sequins but I do remember the buzz and energy of the show and how excited people were heading into it.


      C: Last year was my first NZFW on site which was awesome, as the previous year was just me uploading everything from my place in Brisbane. Zambesi was my first show which was incredible. I remember they had Prodigy pumping and flash lights going off and the first look was an amazing silver suit with silver doc martens and this wicked reflective runway. It was just such a cool show and a great way to start my first fashion week.


      Have you got a favourite memory from the NZFW archives?

      E: Way too many, NZFW is my favourite fashion week of the year. Aside from the shows, it’s also about the people, after ten years at NZFW it now feels like a big extended family to me and I love having lots of my favourite people in one place for the week.


      What show(s) are you most looking forward to this year?


      E: Trelise Cooper’s return to NZFW is definitely one to get excited about. Twenty-seven Names, Hailwood and Kathryn Wilson are favourites of mine. Not to mention Rachel Mills, Wynn Hamlyn and Not For You. I can’t wait to see what the New Gen and Emerging Couture designers present too.
       
      C: Edmund Hillary, Not for You, Hailwood, Huffer, New Gen and Trelise Cooper!
       
      FashioNZ is hosting their own event, tell us about it!

      E&C: We’re looking forward to hosting a panel discussion on the future of fashion on Friday morning. It’s being hosted by Sonia Sly who does the brilliant fashion podcast My Heels Are Killing Me. We’ve got a killer panel including footwear designer Kathryn Wilson, Augustine's designer and co-founder Kelly Coe, veteran designer and head judge of iD Dunedin Fashion Week Tanya Carlson, Maggie Marilyn's designer and founder Maggie Hewitt, director and founder of Showroom 22 Murray Bevan and Whitecliffe College of Art and Design's HOD fashion design Belinda Watt. It’s going to be an hour long discussion for anyone interested in fashion which we hope people will find inspiring and useful.

      For more info about the FashioNZ NZFW event click here!
      Or to get tickets from iTicket here
       
      Our Exhale collection is all about finding time and space to be present. We know how demanding NZFW can be, so in light of the idea of mindfulness; what’s your key to surviving the week?

      C: Being as prepared as we can be and getting enough sleep!

      E: Organisation is definitely key. There are ten people on our team and a lot of shows so we need to put in the work beforehand so things run as smoothly as they can. It’s really important to enjoy the moment too, as much as fashion weeks are hectic for us, taking in the amazing garments that are in front of you and having fun is important too. 
       
      Beyond this week, and in an industry that demands up to date, of the minute content – how do you unwind and switch off?


      E &C: We both try and have at least one day off our computers over the weekend. We’re still trying to get the balance of not working everyday which can be hard when you’re a small business.
       
      C: Pinot noir definitely helps me unwind haha and making sure I can go for walk even if it’s 10 minutes helps me switch off.
       
      E: It’s really hard to completely switch off as our site is obviously online 24/7 and these days people expect social media to be constantly updated too. I love the beach and being somewhere there is less noise is great so I try and get out of the city every few weeks.
       
      Tell us what it is like working with your sister!


      C: It can be challenging at times haha but all in all it’s great! Because we know each other so well (funny that) we both know when the other needs to be pushed or when to back off which you don’t get in a typical working environment. We have also have very similar senses of humour which definitely helps us get through the more stressful times.
       
      E: We actually get that question a lot but it works really well for us. Our skills complement each other perfectly and we have the same work ethic which is great. We have some silly stuff and a particularly embarrassing unofficial theme song which keeps us sane when things get full on.
       
      What’s next for FashioNZ?


      E&C: At the moment we’re not thinking a much past fashion week! But otherwise we’re continuing to develop our long term plans for the site and create new and exciting stories every week. There is always a lot to do but we love working for ourselves and doing the best we can to support so many wonderful NZ businesses.
       
      Evelyn, we know you love navy. Your Saben Dash hardly left your shoulder! What drew you to the chestnut tan from our Exhale collection?


      Yes, I’m such a navy fan, and the Dash has been my constant companion for a year now. Is it bad that I love the chestnut tan because it looks so good with my navy wardrobe? Haha. It really does though and I’m adoring my new Rebe in chestnut which is just beautiful and won’t be leaving my side during NZFW.
       
      Carolyn you had so many favourites! What do you look for when choosing your Saben handbag?

      A bag that will be really versatile and will work with whatever I’m wearing be that day or night, at work or out for dinner. I’ll always get a crossbody bag and Saben have such a great range them. Especially in the latest collection Exhale – spoilt for choice with the Mae, Milly, Finn, Tilly and Cami.
       

      Sister duo behind online fashion news hub FashioNZ

      Shop their favourite pieces here, including Milly, Rebe Chestnut, Frankie Prussian and Yasmin Tote - all pictured above.

       

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