By Steven Fernandez.
For the debut showcase of Australian label Charlie Brown on day three of NZFW, the catwalk was shadowing by an enormous mouth open-wide. The red lips around a white grin were the centrepiece for an Autumn Winter collection titled ‘Naughty & Nice’ and a show with just as much bite!
A total of forty-nine outfits demonstrated the sticky and sweet flavour of a brand that has grown rapidly since its launch in 1995. From a designer who has dressed Nicky Hilton, Jade Jagger and Helena Christensen, the show was split into three segments – ‘military luxe’, ‘indochine opium den’ and ‘gala finale’ – which all showed off a collection as loud as the thumping soundtrack.
The futuristic first section of the show featured garments loud in colour and prints, with bright commando, leopard and rose patterns bringing out the zest and vitality core to the brand. A slightly more tailored but equally detailed second part of the show was just as bright but this time with a heavy oriental influence. The use of leopard prints and rose patterns in a completely different way demonstrated the designer’s ability to achieve great variation within a cohesive collection. As the show moved in to the third segment you could hear the women of the audience gasp with envy at a corset-come-tutu as red as the lips in the logo.
Another gasp towards the end of the show came when one model had a serious problem walking in her heels and wound up falling on the runway. Good thing it was in front of Auckland mayor Len Brown who helped her to her feet! It may have had people on the edge of their seats, but it was nothing to bring down such an epic debut showcase!
Photos courtesy of Blair McTaggart.