I’m just going to cut right to the chase – I have been waiting for a Paris Georgia shop in Auckland city for about 10 years. I’m not joking. I’ve been going to the same shops for eons because those are the only options we’ve got! Muse, World, Zambesi… I’m sorry but I’m tired of buying the same old Comme Des Garçons shirt, when I could buy it just about everywhere else! In New Zealand, I don’t want to buy French label Isabel Marant, I want something closer to home. It’s absolutely crazy to me that I can try on every single dress in Emilia Wickstead 12,000 miles away from where the brand is from, but I can’t even find one Emilia Wickstead piece in all of Auckland city!
Maggie Hewitt of Maggie Marilyn is one of New Zealand’s front-running designers – and a sustainable one at that. With a new store in Britomart, as well as selling out of her Newmarket showroom, finally we have a homegrown designer with her own brick-and-mortar location. But it’s taken a while to get here – 5 years in fact. Stocked by retailing giants Net-A-Porter and Farfetch; European buyers recognized Maggie’s sell-out power, so why didn’t New Zealand see that same potential earlier?
In a dog-eat-dog world, it’s time for New Zealanders to live up to their creative reputation and get ahead of the curve. Kiwis need to be investing in kiwi fashion brands.
Paris Georgia is another of the chicest contemporary brands that New Zealanders have, yet if you need a party dress, everybody hightails it to Aussie competitor, Sass & Bide. Why? Because it’s available to us. We can try it on. Why are we favoring international designers when we should be backing our own? Designed and made in NZ, it’s amazing that nobody has given Paris Mitchell and Georgia Cherrie funding for a physical location when we know its going to succeed! With fans like Rosie Huntington-Whitely, Kendall Jenner, Georgia Fowler and Dua Lipa, Paris Georgia is here to stay.
Following the success of the Maggie Marilyn location, I move for Paris Georgia to have their own shop, rather than working by appointment out of their Ponsonby showroom. It’s time for New Zealanders to start backing their own – we’ve got the creativity, we know we’ve got the talent, all we need is a little financial faith and we’re in business!