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WoolOn Entries Set to Surprise at Catwalk Show

Woollen earrings, shoes, a bumblebee, playing cards and a 3D evening gown are just a few of the “incredible” entries for this year’s WoolOn creative fashion event.

New categories for novice designers and wool accessories had boosted entries, with 55 in total, up from 38 last year, designer liaison Kaye Sutherland said.

“I’m blown away by some of the work I’m seeing as we collect the entries, there are quite a lot that are upcycled and repurposed pieces which is great but you’d never know what they originally were. There’s some very elegant formal dresses and bold and original work.”

WoolOn Designer Liaison Kaye Sutherland.

The garments will be revealed on August 17th at the New World First Look catwalk show in Alexandra. Judging begins that day and winners are announced on Saturday evening at the Rural Women New Zealand WoolOn Awards.

Entries had been coming in from all over New Zealand from experienced designers and crafts people, as well as newcomers, hobbyists and a few school students.

“The entries this year are nothing short of incredible, I don’t envy those judges,” Kaye said.

WoolOn co-chair Leonie Williamson said the Supreme winner will receive $5000 and each of the nine category winners will get $1000.

Tickets for the Saturday event had sold out within three weeks of going on sale back in June, she said Some seats were still available for the Friday show and there were a few spaces left for keen crafters and prospective entrants to join judges and designers at the Up Close gathering at Central Stories Museum and Art Gallery on August 19.

The committee attributed the growth in entries, ticket sales and keen support from new sponsors to the success of last year’s event and a resurgence in the popularity and use of wool fibre.

Winning garments will replace those currently on display from previous shows at Central Stories after the event.

Pushing the boundaries of what you can do with wool…a previous WoolOn entry by Omakau designer Becs Calder. Photo credit: Lisa Davidson.

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