Fashion magazine dedicates issue to Fijian fashion
7 September, 2018, 12:03 am
FIJIAN fashion is literally soaring to greater heights – both in terms of industry growth and its increasing presence in the global scene.
And it only deserves to be in the spotlight and be given the respect it truly deserves with the hardworking people behind the nascent Fijian creative sector.
Most recently, a respected Australian publication Lita dedicated its prestigious September issue to Fijian fashion designers.
Lita Magazine is an independent quarterly print publication that gives the next generation of Australia’s forward thinkers and innovators a creative platform.
Lita Magazine’s print edition is distributed online. About 77 per cent of its issues are distributed in Australia and 23 per cent internationally, allowing Australian brands to be shared on a global scale.
The magazine released its double cover Spring issue on September 1, a first for the magazine, with local budding and established Fijian designers and models featured.
Local model Jorja Naidu featured on both front and back covers, wearing legendary designer Naina by Naina Sayed-Khaiyum.
The inside content also featured budding designer PATE by Alipate Sowane on the other, with an accompanying 16 page editorial featuring other Fijian designers.
According to Lita magazine fashion editor Shannon Clayworth revealed they had a hard time deciding between the two main images chosen on its cover.
“Both represent Fiji as the world knows it but both also show what the world doesn’t always see – Fiji’s urban sophistication and global fashion design. Plus world class models,” Clayworth stated.
The other local models featured are Brittany Hazelman for the fashion feature, and Hanisi Hodge for the Beauty shoot.
The LITA team’s trip to Fiji was facilitated by the Fashion Council of Fiji and Bottega Gold Fijian Fashion Festival – an initiative of the Council.
The trip was facilitated in order to meet the council’s goals of establishing a global presence for Fijian fashion designers.
Already a hub for fashion in the Pacific region, locations for the photoshoots included the Grand Pacific Hotel (the home of the Bottega Gold Fijian Fashion Festival), Suva City, and the pristine Leleuvia Island Resort.
The editorials feature a mix of established and new Fijian designers, paired with luxury Australian brands to show that Fijian fashion is commercial, wearable, versatile, and global.
Fashion Council of Fiji chairman Faraz Ali said Suva in particular had been a hotspot for creative talent for many decades now.
“When anyone thinks fashion in our region, they should not think Honolulu, or Tahiti, they should immediately think ‘Suva’,” he said.
“We are by nature forerunners and we have the most established fashion sensibility. Our designers, when given the opportunity to express themselves freely but within structure, really do shine.”
Mr Ali said Fiji had a long and proud history of being at the forefront of fashion design in Oceania.
“The opportunity with Lita, and beyond, is the culmination of decades of work by our local designers, photographers, models, stylists, media, and everyone else who makes up the ecosystem of our industry, to establish a unique point of view in the global fabric of fashion,” Ali said.
“We are proud that our team was 100 per cent Fijian, and that the Festival and showing designers had such a profound impact on the Lita team that they have given us two covers featuring both a well-known brand like Naina, and a bright young star like PATE.”
While this comes as a recognition for the commitment of those behind the fashion scene, Ali has expressed their tenacity in further establishing Suva as the global centre for Pacific fashion.
“We are so thankful to all our private sector and government partners who made it possible for us to accomplish this national milestone for our industry,” he said.