New Zealand Fashion Week announces dates for 2021 return

Zambesi NZFW

New Zealand Fashion Week will return in 2021. Image from Zambesi’s NZFW 2019 with designer Liz Findlay on the runway in the finale walk. Image by Michael Ng.

New Zealand Fashion Week has announced the dates for the event’s return in 2021, with NZFW set for the Auckland Town Hall and Aotea Square from 23rd – 29th August. The escalating global pandemic caused organisers to postpone the 2020 event back in March as it was originally scheduled for late last month. This year was supposed to be the 20th anniversary celebration of NZFW which will instead take place in 2021.

Next year’s event will take a similar form to previous years with organisers planning a four-day celebration of New Zealand fashion for trade and media, along with a public facing two-day event for Fashion Weekend. The shows will also be digitally amplified to reach a larger audience which will further benefit the designers.

“The primary objective of New Zealand Fashion Week has always been to support the wonderful creative industry, designers and partners who are fundamental to its success,” says NZFW founder and director, Dame Pieter Stewart. “The impact of COVID-19 on the fashion industry has been severe, with many of our designers facing an unprecedented challenge. We know New Zealand Fashion Week is an important platform to promote our wonderful industry and we promise to work more closely with local fashion leaders than ever before.”

“I have no doubt that New Zealand fashion will come out of this stronger. Next year will be the 20th anniversary of New Zealand Fashion Week – and we look forward to staging a phenomenal event that showcases the best of our local designers. While online platforms have become much more important to designers, digital events cannot take the place of the excitement, emotion and buzz generated at live gatherings, or the value of interacting directly with the consumer and I expect going forward that designers will hold their customer at the centre of their promotions.”

The event has a great deal of support from local designers and the industry at large who are excited that NZFW will be returning in 2021.

“We’ve shown at New Zealand Fashion Week every single year since we began, and we’re thankful to hear the event is returning,” says designer Adrian Hailwood. “It is a hugely important aspect of our overall marketing and sales plan – delivering local and international publicity, whilst also driving new revenue and sales accounts throughout the country. We love the creative outlet for our very glamorous show pieces that get worn at special occasions by our faithful followers.”

Elisabeth Findlay of Zambesi also added her support of NZFW, “New Zealand Fashion Week is the centrepiece of our local fashion industry. It is hugely important not only to the designers, but also to our photographers, stylists, media, creatives, publicists and make-up artists. It has a fundamental role in supporting a significant chunk of our creative industry, and we’re very pleased to hear it will return in 2021.”

The 2021 event will see many partners and sponsors return such as Heart of the City (including FashioNZ as an online media partner) alongside government organisations ATEED and Activate Auckland who have also pledged their support.

“We are thankful for the support of our sponsors partners across the private and public sectors,” says Myken Stewart, brand and commercial manager at NZFW. “We have been pleasantly surprised at some of the interesting brands that are participating in 2021, such as Keith Haye Homes and Tatty’s. Additional sponsorship opportunities are still available, and any brand or business that wants to forge a connection to fashion and style should get in touch directly.”

Full details on the 2021 NZFW programme, sponsor line-up and activation plans will be released early next year.