Fashion event highlights Maori designers

 June 15, 2020

 Fashion runway event Te Wero has not let COVID-19 keep it down.  

 The red-carpet fashion runway event, originally scheduled to be held in April but postponed due to lockdown, will go ahead in Rotorua in August, now that government regulations around events have been relaxed. 

 Te Wero (the challenge) brings together a collaboration of emerging and established Māori designers in one event. Organisers Peter Duncan and Taongahuia Maxwell say it will highlight the incredible design talent among Māori New Zealanders. 

 Māori fashion design is fast becoming a major contender on the global stage. It’s a field that goes against the grain of traditional European thinking when it comes to fashion, putting masterfully created and contemporary and unique design in the spotlight. 

Te Wero presents the beauty of masterfully created and generational design techniques, paired with contemporary and unique design innovation,” Peter says.  

“It’s going to be a fantastic event.” 

Lead designer Taongahuia Maxwell owns Iti Gifts online and shares a retail store in Rotorua.   Although new to the fashion industry, she completed a Bachelor of Māori Art in 2017 and established her label Kahu Huia (Huia Clothing) in 2019. Other participating designers include the renowned Jeanine Clarkin, who has been leading the field in Māori fashion since 1994, popular jewellery and fashion designer Nichola Te Kiri, who has various accolades under her belt, emerging designers Paulette Teatai-Ariki and local favourite Wairata Warbrick, and 2019 Miromoda Avante Garde section winner Chermene Castle. Jewellery designer Brady Walker will also join the team, providing his unique stainless steel pieces to adorn their garments. 

Te Wero is on from 6.30pm on August 15, at Rotorua’s Energy Events Centre. Tickets are on sale now from Ticketmaster. 

Women’s conference on again in Eastern Bay 

 February 26, 2020

 A second Inspiring Women conference will be held in Whakatane in May. 

The May 21 event follows on the heels of the inaugural conference last year, which was launched as a way of celebrating Eastern Bay women. “There are so many talented, driven women in the district and we wanted to give them an opportunity to get together, share stories, make connections and support each other,” co-organiser Justine McLeary, of Frolic PR, says.  

The boutique 2019 event saw almost 70 women come together to enjoy five local speakers. Connections were made, inspiration was gained and the feedback was extremely positive.  

“Before we’d even hosted the first event people were asking about a second one, and that highlighted for us the strong demand for a local uplifting, positive event for women,” Justine says. 

This year, Inspiring Women features an interesting line-up of speakers, including Corrine Lynskey of Curated Curves, an online fashion store for plus-size women, and adventurer Ronna Funtelar. People should keep an eye on the Inspiring Women page on Facebook for details. 

Inspiring Women 2020 will be at the Top Shelf Function Room on August 27, from 9am – 12pm. It is supported by a range of local businesses including major sponsors Sun FM, Ezebiz, Stellar Creative Marketing and Claire House Photography.  

“The support is very much appreciated and we look forward to building on this in future years to grow the event,” Justine says. 

Visit for more details or to book your space. Seats are limited.  

Big changes behind the scenes

January 14, 2020

The Frolic team is expanding, with the addition of Nicole Leach into the office.

Nicole moved to the Bay of Plenty from Kapiti a year or two ago and has an extensive marketing, event management and sales background. She’s now a full Frolic partner and we’re so excited to have her. 

Nicole and her two children have grown to love Whakatane since they traded in the Wellington winds for our sunshine and she says there’s nowhere else they’d rather live. Her role as a co-owner of Frolic will focus on business growth, events and helping ensure we continue to give our clients an effective, efficient, professional and friendly service. Nicole’s presence in the team means we can offer a wider range of services and plan and implement even more exciting projects, and we can’t wait.   

Welcome, Nicole!