Viv Tamblyn’s winning entry in the open streetwear section of the MLT Hokonui Fashion Design Awards was influenced by the Christchurch shootings.
Mrs Tamblyn said she was designing the garment at the time.
“I was inspired after listening to the speeches and moved when the Prime Minister said we are a diverse country with many different cultures – but we are one!
“I ran with that idea and transferred my interpretation of this into my design, for example, one look incorporating different ideas, breaking traditional rules and displaying diversity,” Mrs Tamblyn said.
Embroidered on the inside of the outfit are the words “Stand Tall NZ Kia Kaha”.
“Throughout the outfit there are raw edges, some hemmed, some overlocked, ruffles, flounces and frills – nothing matched.
“There is a busy side and a plain side.
“I deliberately sewed the buttons on the male side to represent gender equality.”
Other than winning, highlights for her were the Chinese collection and having her daughter and granddaughter at Friday night’s Strictly Design Show.
“Having three generations there was very special.”
Designing has been Mrs Tamblyn’s passion for many years.
“You get used to being busy at night.
“I am presently working on the tartan entry already for the Teviot Valley Wearable Tartan Art Awards in September.
It wasn’t all easy going, she said.
“You have to be prepared for trials and errors, and brave enough to scrap and start again .. That is dedication.”
It was particularly special to have Wade Paterson return to present the Heather Paterson QSM Memorial Trophy 2019 for best Southland designer this year, Mrs Tamblyn said.
“Wade has presented this trophy three times and each time it has been awarded to me.
“Heather was a friend and my inspiration and always encouraged us to continue to grow with our designs.”
She strove to experiment with new ideas and techniques each year.
“Fashion and design is so exciting.
“It you haven’t attended the Hokonui Fashion and Design Awards you are missing one heck of a ride.”