Is it any coincidence that Fashion Week is held in Auckland at precisely the same time that World of Wearable Arts is held in Wellington? Its a pity really, cos then you really can’t get to see both, but then again, what is the difference?

One is a fantasy world of openably unwearable pieces of imaginative interpretations of the latest fads, and the other is… well, much the same really. Which of the two events did this one fall into?

Fantasy wearable art? No, actually. This creation, above, is by young Maori designer Ana Hou, and was featured in the Miramoda design show during Fashion Week in Auckland. It is a fantastic piece, in the true word of fantasy, with large butterfly wings and a rather large holes strategically places almost anywhere – with a large amount of exposed flesh and highly visible undies. On this particular model, admittedly stunningly gorgeous, there’s also no need to wear a bra – not something your average kiwi woman could get away with comfortably while wearing a holey body stocking. Sagging, protruding breasts, nipples poking out through the holey fabric, or, with the off the shoulder design, a good chance of an entire bosum – along with the wing tips poking passersby in the face, there’s not much chance really that this will ever see an outing on the street.

Loops, holey design – the covered face, as pleasant as any gimp suit or burqha, it is as totally impractical as any other. Yes, it is by two young first time Indians, and technologically is as clever as all get out, being without any stitches. Impractical as the one above, at least this was openly in a competition for Art, not for a Fashion show.

What about the “serious” design from a well-known designer such as those that design for the High St. Is this fashion, or is this fascist? Most of the fashion world seems to be ruled by gay men, who often seem not to care a fig about the practicalities or the women they are designing for. Is it the tendency to treat women as dolls, playing dressup? Is misogyny normal for fashion designers? Woman designers are often just as bad, or inconsiderate:

Wearing a leather strap / bandolier does not really ever count as a shirt, in anyone’s book really, and getting a male model to wear lacey underwear underneath it doesn’t make it any better. But it’s even worse for the female model who had to put up with this nonsense:

Hmmm. Lace, leather and nipples out – that’s just embarrassing. And Kate Sylvester is meant to be one of our better designers. What about a lesser known designer, Zheng?

Yes, see through skirts and shirts and bra and knickers showing. Something that nearly every woman I know would run a million miles from. Really, what is the point of unveiling this crap? In an urban sense, it is as bad as the miles of badly designed housing in suburbia – ugly buildings, stick on columns, housing oriented the wrong way for the sun, and all the plethora of mistakes that we rant against in an architectural sense. And yet it gets the headlines.
I despair.