Top local fashion designers
Shop some of New Zealand's top designers in boutiques and flagships stores dotted around Wellington's compact city centre.
Local label Okewa has achieved the near impossible: a stylish and elegant raincoat. Completely waterproof and sustainably sourced, Okewa’s coats are light to wear and designed with inner-city living in mind. Their coats come in a range of classic cuts and colours that range from bold to demure that can be browsed and bought online from their website.
Founded by a Wellingtonian couple, Nevada and Nick Leckie, who both take environmental sustainability seriously; they have a line of rainwear that’s made from 100% recycled plastic bottles.
29 College Street, Te Aro, Wellington
Fitting for a label inspired by craftsmanship that began right here in Wellington, the Kowtow flagship store is a masterpiece of natural, locally-sourced and sustainable materials. It’s the perfect backdrop for browsing Kowtow’s seasonal collections, and the kind of space you’ll want to linger in. Inspired by architecture and street style, Kowtow’s clothes are designed to move freely with their wearers.
Wellington-based Kowtow founder, Gosia Piatek, is involved with every aspect of the production of clothing by her avant-garde label, dedicated to fairtrade and organic cotton and sustainable, ethical production. Gosia believes consumer choices should have positive consequences and impact on the world around us.
1/115 Victoria Street, Te Aro, Wellington
Wilson Trollope is the fashion label of Wellington designer, Annabelle Wilson. Launched winter 2013, the label is named after Annabelle’s grandmothers, who were both stylish and talented dressmakers themselves and taught her their craft.
Wilson Trollope has an understated polished elegance with classic, uncomplicated silhouettes and engaging prints.
Wilson Trollope’s flagship store on Victoria Street is the perfect place to delve into the designer’s seasonal collections.
Now or Never
30 Ghuznee Street, Te Aro, Wellington
Now or Never is a local independent lingerie label that’s designed and made in Wellington by two friends, Emma Lodge and Olivia Lacey. Using best-quality silk and subtle but flattering designs, their pieces feel incredibly luxurious and will become lasting favourites in your wardrobe.
In September 2020, Now or Never launched a new collection of silk slips focused on all things local. The material is bought from The Fabric Store on Garrett Street, the garments are made in Wellington and instead of professional models, they asked locals to the modelling including DJ Amy Jean, French White, and writer Nina Katungi.
99 Willis Street, Te Aro, Wellington
This local organic underwear label is helping the refugee community from the bottom up. Nisa is a socially-minded underwear label that employs women from refugee backgrounds to make their underwear. Made used certified organic cotton, Nisa’s products are soft and come in a variety of colours and styles for both men and women.
Nisa has a flagship store and studio on Willis Street which customers can check out the range of bras, undies, t-shirt, singlets and socks and watch as they are lovingly produced.
85 Victoria Street, Te Aro, Wellington
If Wellington has an ‘it’ bag, it would most certainly be made by Yu Mei. Founded by Wellingtonian Jessie Wong, Yu Mei create leather bags and accessories that are functional with an understated luxury that is made in the heart of Wellington.
Yu Mei’s flagship store on Victoria Street has a clean and minimalistic design and is a stunning place to experience Yu Mei’s often-updated collection of leather goods, which ranges from bags to wallets and accessories. Each Yu Mei design is made from 100% South Island, New Zealand farmed and tanned deer nappa which makes for an object that’s unbelievably soft and develops a lovely patina with age.
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