6 Local Makers To Have On Your Fashion Radar

Sustainable design comes in myriad iterations, and these young designers are doing it on a small scale



Local textile artist Gala Richards makes artful, enigmatic knitwear. Gala’s practice usually sees her creating knits by hand on a domestic flat knitting machine; her work explores tension, manipulation and the body through tactical laddering. Gala’s collaboration with local brand Wixii, the Royal Gala Knit collection, sees her pieces translated to a Shima Seiki knitting machine, made from lightweight seven-gauge cotton yarn. We love the deconstructed yet easy-to-wear quality of these knits; they’re made-to-order, and available from Wixii.


A member of Kiri Nathan’s Kahui Collective, designer Jacob Coutie creates thoughtful garments, many made from repurposed textiles and imbued with memory. His winter collection has just been released. This bespoke jacket is made from found textiles — including canvas covers for horses and reconditioned curtain fabric.


We love the cheerful, charming pieces this young Wairarapa-based designer makes in her home studio, and the knitwear is a particularly jolly salve for winter dressing. Her range is nearly all made-to-order, which minimises waste, and focused on deadstock textiles and natural fibres.


Pragmatic designer Eliav Meltzer handmakes his canny upcycled bags from his Karangahape Rd workroom, a process that sees him repurpose what he describes as “artefact of wasteful consumption” — think totes made from postage sacks and garment bags. It’s a thoughtful way to address consumption and find beauty in discarded items, and one we like.


Small and local, there’s a playful feel to this local brand’s made-to-order collection of velvet textured mini dresses, party dresses and tops. Designer Sarah Tansey brings some welcome frivolity to the sustainability space, and we love the early 2000s feel of her work.


A locally made, hand-knitted knitwear brand using ethically produced yarn to fashion colourful, artful and individual jumpers, these made-to-order jumpers are limited, so place your orders now and support this small family business.

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New Zealand Herald

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