Fashion show judge Tanya Carlson said there was an “overarching” theme of dystopianism across the 128 entries.
“There was a lot of positivity and hope in it that surprised me.”
She was impressed by the students’ self-directed and home-schooling during the pandemic.
“I thought the standard was incredibly high,” she says.
Nine New Zealand designers were among the 30 finalists for the Designer Award, judged by MS Carlson, Charmaine Reveley and Tarra Viggo.
The ID Dunedin Fashion Show will be held at Dunedin Railway Station on March 31 and April 1.
It will feature a host of “fashion royalty” such as NOM*D, Strangers Company, Moochi and Charmaine Reveley, who will be showcasing their entire Winter ’23 collections.
Three of the nine New Zealand finalists for the Emerging Designer Award are from Auckland University of Technology, two from Massey University, two from Whitecliffe College of Art and Design and two from Otago Polytechnic.
Otago Polytechnic graduate Ellen Ross presents her collection, Onset, described as a “business capsule” based on a fashion-conscious approach to sustainability and using natural and recycled fibres.
Joining her will be Otago Polytechnic graduate Ethan Cruise with “The Liminal Space”, a collection of dark heavy fabrics, layers and textile embellishments.
Alongside established designers, five Otago Polytechnic graduates “capsule collections” were chosen to hit the runway.
Otago Polytechnic designers are George Park, Francesca Flynn, Finn Duffy, Russell Evan Tino and Sydney North.
Each will feature three dresses from their 2022 graduate collections.
Otago Polytechnic School of Design Professor Margo Barton said it was a great opportunity for graduates to see their collections alongside established names in the industry.
“It gives them a sense of the future they can have in this industry.”
Fashion Week, which runs from March 28 to April 2, includes exhibitions, runways, talks and films.