nzfw 2012 – zambesi

Straight out of the gate, Zambesi starts with their version of metallics.  With a bronze fitted shift dress in their dark rendering of what it is to be both feminine and beautiful. Another trend we are just starting to see on the first day at NZFW is fur – and both metallics and fur are key notes in a Zambesi collection that phase in and out as they please.  Well they obviously please now, with gorgeous silver loafers and lace ups with mens suits.  With beautiful burnished gold patterned pants, and dirty gold and black checked velvet dresses and shirts.  With gold rose patterned on a jacket.  With metallic silver sequined pants teamed with a cream jumper.  All of it completely on trend but done in that uncompromising Zambesi way.  We know that Liz Findlay designs with a broad collection in mind, not individual, stand-alone collections each season, but with a hat tip always to the larger picture.  To the entire Zambesi aesthetic – and this particular collection, is VERY Zambesi – esque.  With many traditional Zambesi themes running through it, the wool black watch tartan fabric with the sequined detail over the top – which is used time and again – I have seen it used with both wools and silk georgettes. With the glossy lacquer finishes used for leggings and skirts. But with the introduction of both yellow and pink checks, pink with gold detailing, and even navy checked velvet – it all still feels familiar but fresh. The inclusion of navy always makes me very happy as it works so well with black. The fringed dress is a standout, as is the cross over cardigan with diamond detailing on the back.  Watch out for the accessories – loved the drawstring backpacks.

Also familiar is the collaboration with Amber D for M.A.C. with the make up and Jason Chong Li for Stephen Marr for the hair.  With deconstructed hair looking wildly put together, clipped up and falling down all at once. The inspiration for the hair was a girl who had cut her own hair, realized she had got it wrong and pinned it up in an effort to save herself. The effect is a perfect fit with Zambesi’s thrown together, layered aesthetic. This is obviously a collaboration that works well.

Photography by Michelle Weir

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