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Category Archives: fashion
It’s been a while between collaborations so I am TOTALLY thrilled to bring you the first TEAM.WORK project of 2017. And, as always, it is damn unique!
I had been admiring the collection of the Mushama & Me rain coats for more than a few years when designer; Sharn Blackwell and I began to trade emails with a sniff of a collaboration in the air. I had previously blogged about the brands original Rain Cape and was already envisaging my dream twist on this great initial concept.
So Sharn and I got together in Auckland last year, playing around with the sample shape and visiting some brilliant local fabric wholesalers. We sent a few of our favourite samples to her local waterproofer and thus began the trading of parcels between the islands.
We settled on a beautiful lightweight cotton with a super fine navy pinstripe which, when waterproofed, had a result that was both neutral to work for most peoples personal aesthetic but had some subtle texture for interest. It also meant that it was still super easy to be roughly folded up and shoved into bags to be pulled out when needed. Handy.
Work was also done on the original design in terms of adding some front facing “arm slits” for those times when the hands need to come out but everything else would like to stay dry. These have internal zips to make access easy and tightly shut shop when you are needing full closed in coverage!
Lastly we surveyed you guys on the dome and cord colours – which was fun and super revealing! Out of the three options our “dirty yellow” (or mustard yellow as we call it now) won and the cherry on the top was complete!
The result is a waterproof workhorse of great quality, made locally in Auckland and offering awesome versatility. This isn’t something to last the season – it is classic and carefully built to last you years and years.
During the design process, we literally discussed who the cape would work well for.
Those having to stalk the soggy sidelines of sports fields, making that bike OR walk commute in our crazy volatile climate or even tucking a baby away in a front pack/sling to be snug and dry. It’s the perfect back-up to keep tucked in the car for weather emergency’s or to take you from the forest to the streets without looking too “outdoorsy and rustic!”.
The hood is decent and will cover a bike helmet plus the low scooped hems will protect your arms and thighs if zooming through a downpour!
I’d love to invite you to read on further below to learn more about my collaborator Sharn Blackwell of Mushama and Me.
You’ll also get to enjoy MANY different takes and angles on the Rain Cape as modelled by my own mother, Mimi, my sister Caroline and her daughter, baby Ada!
And right at the bottom you will also find the details for how you can WIN our original sample!
The cape is available exclusively in very limited numbers online at Mushama & Me.
Click through to find out more in terms of measurements and specs and please don’t hesitate to snap up your own if this looks like the solver of all your weather exposure issues!
Sharn you have lived around the world, by your own admission, in some pretty wet places! Mushama and Me has no doubt rescued many bodies from the elements – can you talk us through your design process and how you arrived at the Rain Cape and others in your collection?
Yes indeed, I have lived in and worked my way around many parts of the world. The wettest, and most inspirational city was Amsterdam. The weather there is crap, yet it doesn’t stop people getting outdoors. Whether its sunny, raining or snowing – biking is still the mode of transport for most Dutchies.
I think that is awesome!
However, I noticed most people riding in the rain would have mastered the knack of holding an umbrella in one hand while riding to stay dry.
Once shopping around a little, I realised this was the much cooler option when considering the pretty horrific wet weather gear options available…
Amsterdam is where Mushama & Me was born, and so from the beginning I had biking in mind. I wanted to create a raincoat that people wanted to wear (that looked cooler than an umbrella!) I started with two styles, the original A-line cut, and a bike specific style with leg straps to keep your knees dry.
Over the past few years the collection has developed and grown, but still has practicality at the core.
“I think about the lifestyle of those who don’t let rain get in the way of life, like the Dutchies, who still walk, bike and play in the rain.”
Getting out and about is obviously a core value for the Mushama and Me customer (rain coats aren’t that handy for lounging on the sofa…).
Where and what are your favourite outdoor things to do with your family?
I have always loved the outdoors, and luckily I married someone who also does. We love to travel the world and try to keep this a priority in our busy lives.
We live in Stanmore Bay, just north of Auckland, in a beautiful spot. We’re super lucky that we can walk to the beach for fresh ocean air, and spend a lot of time there, walking the length of the beach and watching our daughter play and learn.
That said, we spend more weekends away than we do at home. Its incredibly refreshing to leave the hustle and bustle, even if its for 2-3 days.
We love to go camping, its good for the soul and makes us appreciate the simple life. Hiking (mostly short walks now with a baby) is something we try and do most weekends, whether its in one of Auckland regional parks or one of NZ’s spectacular trails.
And festivals – outdoor festivals are the best! It’s where people loose their inhibitions and live totally in the moment!
UPDATE: Thanks for all the awesome entries! Looks like a lot of you could use a Rain Cape in your lives!
The very lucky winner, drawn at random was Deb L.
Join us to WIN!
We have decided to put our sample Rain Cape up for grabs. This exactly mirrors the original that you can buy here except for the zips being access from the outside instead of in.
In the comments below tell us “on what occasion in your own life do you think the TEAM.WORK Rain Cape would come in handy?”
(eg. your daily commute in Auckland, your planned travels to Iceland in spring, your forced attendance to winter based sports events….)
– Winner will be drawn at random on Thursday 22nd of June. v
– Open to NZ and Australian residents only.
I am really pleased to bring you this bright light from the jewellery corner of our down under industry!
To me, Nina Gordon gleams with that kiwi girl, can-do attitude, which, I like to think sets us apart a little on the world stage. Her love of jewellery is founded in a love of working with her hands, something that was fostered by time spent with her Dad in his car wrecking yard….I’m not kidding. She is as gritty and cool as she sounds, and I think her shiny, strong aesthetic flows easily through every range she produces for her brand; FLASH .
As wearer of a FLASH ring myself, I can vouch for the everyday ease that comes with Nina’s style. My only problem is how long my wish list is!
I hope you all enjoy the interview below !
Nina, you share on your site that you began working with metal with your Dad at just 15.
What was it that appealed to you and what has been your path to end up designing for your own brand?
I’m really close with my family and they have had a massive influence on me being creative. I use to do metal work with my dad at a young age as he had a car wrecking yard. My after school job was pulling switches and gauges out of old cars on stacks – we have even built a car together (it’s my pride and joy #bogan). I wanted to become a mechanic like my Dad but my Mum got me into jewellery instead – she has the best collection and has always inspired me.
We both enrolled in jewellery night courses and my interest bloomed. Nelson is like a mecca for amazing jewellers and I have had many amazing teachers, I then became the regular at the studio enrolling in the course just to use the equipment. The thing I love about working with metal is you get instant results (lol It’s safe to say I have little patience!).
It wasn’t until I was in Wellington and was over my job as a coffee roaster, that I decided to follow my creative side and randomly applied for a job at a metal design firm. Working in the metal industry was interesting…hahaha.
I was the only female and all the men were 20 – 30 years my senior, the technology was all from the 70s (and the safety standards lol). I was just insanly lucky that the GM really liked me and I became his sidekick, he taight me so much about casting, plating and metal….. I don’t think I would ever do it again, but I’m so happy I did, as this is how Flash started.
Flash was a bit an accident, one day when on the factory floor I had brought along some of my silver rings as there were a few spaces available in a mould, so we casted them, plated them and Bam. Flash was born.
I gave these rings to all of my friends and word spread, so I decided to create a whole collection and the rest is history. It’s been a really organic, fun journey.
Given the chance to hang out with any of your design and style heroes – who would be on your list to invite to drinks?
Wow great question, I have a large verity of design /style heroes that I love. From the costume jewellery era Paloma Picasso and Yves Saint Laurent – I’m obsessed with the design from the 80s!
Style wise, Carmen Hamilton from Chronicles of Her and Yasmin Suteja are at the top of my list. Also, I would invite some of my Wellington and Melbourne girlfriends, they are all very independent about there style and fashion- I love that they give zero f*cks.
That’s the most inspiring thing to me.
You’ve recently relocated from Wellington to Byron Bay via Melbourne? What was behind your move and how is it all going?!
Yes that’s right – we’ve been moving around a bit, I left Wellington for Melbourne and spend a few years in the city and now we have relocated to Byron – It was just such a great opportunity as my partner Rich received a job transfer.
I am really enjoying it here, it reminds me of where I grew up and being beside the beach and outdoors is more ‘me’. I am more inspired, productive and just have more headspace which is amazing!
I personally know the exhilarating ride that is self employment – the unrivalled satisfaction in a WIN and the tired feeling of another wall being put up. What advice or wisdom could you share with us that you have learnt to be true on your own ride?
Hahah being self employed definitely has its highs and lows. (Especially when you are bank rolling it yourself lol).
I think the thing I could share, is to make decisions and take calculated risks. For a period I stalled because the ‘conditions’ were not right.. I was like waiting.. but for what, I was unsure. Making decisions is hard, But opportunities don’t wait – I’ve definitely learnt this the hard way.
Also, do things for yourself, it feels really good and people can see thought things that aren’t genuine.
What I learnt from Nina:
Perhaps it IS this simple?
That love of a material or process might actually
be the pathway to a career with passion.
Explore more of the FLASH world here:
The aesthetic that Akazi brings to the table is everything I personally love. Natural fabrics, a looser fit and a casual but cool vibe. This all rests on a commitment to growing an ethical brand in its manufacture and processes.
Mother/daughter duo; Tracey Barker and Pia Twyford might be based near Byron Bay, but the inspiration for Akazi comes from a lifetime of travel and the simpler life they led for many years in Africa.
The collection of basics that is aimed to let you slide from house to beach to plane and back again is made from quality, plant based fabrics – think various weights of linen and muslin.
It’s safe to say my shopping list is growing (those wide leg pants!) !!!
Explore below and online at Akazi here.
Imagery supplied by and used with permission of Akazi
Photography by Melody Jasmine
Australian brand; Sanctuary Studio is a new blip on my radar but I instantly recognised it as a beacon to the fun loving, “more is more” kids out there! (By kids I mean “you” – the one with magpie eyes for attitude, boldness and colour in your life!)
Created by mother/daughter duo Anne Cook and Simone Rennard in 2015, they have led with a desire to collaborate with artists to create bedlinen, homeware and accessories that stand out in the fact its not all uniform!
Their new summery offering called ‘Neon Drive’ is a punchy mix of Palm Springs vs Bondi beach with a 90’s vibe spread across lush beach towels, bags, sarongs and more.
Imagery supplied by and used with permission of
NZ based hat maker; Emma Cheape has been busy adding to her tried and true favourites with some pretty cool, classic new styles!
Below and on her site you can explore the various visors, wide brimmed hats and caps she has made for the coming summer months down under. Shopping for the boys? Click on through to explore that offering here!
All imagery supplied by and used with permission of
The Brim Label.
Our local footwear architect is back with another new season of finely crafted, deftly designed shoes that won’t be like anyone elses!
Katie Revie continues to build her empire, now from her flagship store on Auckland’s Ponsonby Road, by issuing refreshingly new collections that still carry her distinct style.
‘Gusto’ channels strong geometry accentuated with the use of strong blog colour and texture. And not to be forgotten are the divine hand carved timber heels that have become iconic to the REVIE style!
Click on through and scroll on down.