We Antipodeans know Chaos & Harmony shoes are on point for the whole bridal party, and soon our sisters in the US will get the memo too. The Bay of Plenty brand recently hotfooted it to New York as one of a select group of fashion-forward labels chosen to show at the One Fine Day Bridal Market, an event that provides coveted face time with industry buyers. True to form, Chaos & Harmony nailed it and secured their dream stockist, BHLDN (pronounced ‘beholden’), aka the cult wedding retailer that’s part of the Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie group. Kudos to Chaos – and to US-based brides, who’ll be able to shop these sweet shoes at BHLDN stores from (northern hemisphere) spring 2019.
All you need is…
Dubbed ‘the complete outfitter’, Auckland-based label Shjark is all about wardrobe essentials, with each collection created as a capsule offering of items you could dress yourself in every day and night of the week. Designer Amber Gardner considers her garments to be investment pieces, but not the kind you reserve only for special occasions. Influenced by utilitarian looks, she expertly bridges the divide between form and function – and classic and contemporary, too. AW/19 was informed by Mad Men, and has focus on texture and a covetable colour palette straight out of 1960s NYC.
Does the thought of essential oils conjure visions for you of tacky crystal shops and tie-dyed tees? Think again: home fragrance has had a much-needed makeover, and it’s never been so elegant. Aēsop is in on the act with its new Brass Oil Burner inspired by asymmetry and the perfect imperfection of poured metal. The skincare brand’s first-ever object for interiors, it’s designed by Studio Henry Wilson and crafted from solid brass using a wax casting process, a traditional technique that uses wax moulds to give each vessel its own unique character and a patina that endlessly evolves. Accompanying this beautiful new burner is oil blend Béatrice, a woody, citrusy scent with notes of patchouli and cedar. Get them while they’re hot.
Ready for this gel?
Whether or not your body’s too bootylicious, we think you can handle this: Auckland’s Pop Nails is now offering an alternative to the classic gel or acrylic option – GelBottle’s Builder in a Bottle. The high-tech formula can be used like a regular gel polish to create extensions and to sculpt nail art, and also protects the nails underneath, filling in ridges, rebuilding breakages, strengthening and allowing growth. Its staying power means technicians can simply infill your nails on subsequent visits, rather than starting over. The fact it soaks off and is non-toxic and vegan will be music to your ears, but its real superpower might be its ability to do all this while looking gorgeously glossy and glam.
When it comes to bridal gown shopping, having everything in one place can be a real blessing. Enter Mrs Fray, a Canberra-based event run by wedding photographers Amy Farrell and Andi O’Day, who host tri-annual pop-up shops at the city’s chic Nishi Gallery. The four-day wedding-attire events are open to the public, plus private fittings can be arranged. The most recent pop-up showcased pieces by designers Karen Willis Holmes, L’Eto, Natalija and Prea James, plus adornments from By Nye, EOD Shoes, OLO Fragrance and organic underwear brand Baserange. Brides-to-be can also head online to purchase anything they viewed or tried on at the gallery.
Here’s something to celebrate. Back in 2014, Olaplex caused quite the stir on the haircare scene by launching the world’s first bond repair and maintenance system. Now it’s back with its first new products since: No.4 Bond Maintenance Shampoo and No.5 Bond Maintenance Conditioner. Part of a three-step take-home kit (with No.3 Hair Perfector), they promise to repair, strengthen, hydrate and protect your locks so you basically always look like you’ve just stepped out of a salon. They’re free of silicone sulfates, paraben and gluten – and they’re vegan, too. Don’t go smashing any plates or anything, but if you’re trying to get your tresses into top shape, you might like to run, not walk, to selected salons nationwide.
Choose your own adventure
Just because you and your beloved aren’t white wedding types, doesn’t mean you can’t plan your ultimate nuptials. If you’d rather have a private experience than a big event, Queenstown’s The Lovers Elopement Co is probably your perfect match. A collective of creatives – photographer Dawn Thomson, floral artist Gypsy West and stylist Stacey Tulloch – they specialise in helping couples find their wild, curating elopement packages for which the only limit is your imagination. Whether a private getaway for two or a truly intimate celebration with your nearest and dearest makes your heart sing, they’ll help you organise a breathtakingly romantic elopement that is yours and yours alone.
Mix it up
One of the most significant trends of the last few years has been an overall casualisation of men’s dressing and the resurgence of separates. Being able to mix and match separates gives more flexibility to wear key pieces in a variety of ways. And for those looking for paired back or less formal wedding attire separates can work exceptionally well. Crane Brothers recognise that a Blazer or Reefer Jacket paired with a pair of slacks have long been important staples of any well-dressed man’s wardrobe and they have embraced this traditional concept in a modern way. We spoke to the founder of Crane Brothers, Murray Crane who educated us on the rules a gentleman should be guided by when choosing separates— “Ensure odd jackets go well with trousers, they must not clash in their pattern and they must be of a similar formality. Seek “Odd Jackets” in bold checks or textured cloths, including boucle or linen and silk blends with a patch pocket or buggy (half) lining.” With five separate artisan factories in Italy producing Shoes, Shirts, Trousers and of course their soft tailoring for separates, we think Crane Brothers should be the first port of call for the refined gentlemen looking for modern separates with a timeless elegance.
That it’s beautiful and breathable and available in six inclusive styles is just the beginning for Kowtow’s chic new swimwear. The local conscious-clothing label’s first sustainable swim collection is crafted from Econyl, a type of regenerated nylon made in Italy from waste like fishing nets, old carpet and fabric scraps, and creative director Gosia Piatek says they’re so proud of what they’ve made. So far, Kowtow has recycled 120kg of discarded nylon and offers a take-back programme for these pieces, so you can have them repurposed when they’ve done their dash. The two block-colour one-pieces and four separates for mix-and-match bikinis are joined by a couple of organic cotton tees and a sarong embellished with prints by Australian watercolour artist and textile designer Lauren Cassar of Mirador. Shopping for bathers has never been a happier prospect – what are you waiting for?!
Vow & declare
Make a pact with yourself right now to start thinking about those vows with the help of this lovely assistant by Christchurch wedding planner Laura Magill, which is tailor-made for jotting down your thoughts and feelings in the lead-up to the big day. If you’re lost for words, its sentence starters and quotes will come in handy, or just scribble away stream-of-consciousness-style, then distil your stories and sentiments down to their essence later using the tips provided. Just try to keep your handwriting legible – Notes From The Heart is pretty enough to be kept as a memento, and perhaps even shown to your grandkids. Available at Sunday Homestore.
That’s the spirit
Reduced to grimly sipping on sugary fizz or tired lime and soda all night, non-drinkers have traditionally drawn the shortest of straws at weddings and other social occasions. So good on Seedlip for leading the way and creating non-alcoholic spirits that make being the designated driver or hangover-avoider a much more appealing prospect – and any cocktail list much more current. The UK distillery’s mission to change how the world drinks continues with their latest teetotal invention, Grove 42. The third spirit in the stable, it’s as zesty as all get-out, a citrusy blend of bitter and blood orange, mandarin, lemon, ginger and lemongrass. Distributed in New Zealand through Cook & Nelson, you can find out more at Seedlip Drinks.
Bess of the best
Collection 02, Dotonbori Daze, from New Zealand accessories house Bess is now available to order. Creative director Nicole Sykes was inspired by the streets of Osaka when designing her latest range of league-of-their-own scarves, which are embellished with colours, shapes, patterns and logos that recall the vibrant visual landscape of urban Japan. The epitome of elegance, in silk twill or silk georgette with hand-rolled edges, there are nine pieces in the collection – pictured is Shi. All are produced in limited runs, making them highly collectable. A luxe little gift for your girls, perhaps? Bess Studio
Feel like a woman
When founding her label La Fille d’O, Belgium’s Murielle Victorine Scherre noted that “the past is full of women who elevate history into art” and vowed to tap into that feminist wisdom. Today, she crafts all sorts of avantgarde items based on such principles (lingerie, togs, bodysuits – even an apron), and many have caught the eye of Kiwi designer Kristine Crabb. Miraculously both sexy and comfortable, the underpinnings now stocked at Miss Crabb are a fantastic complement to Kristine’s slinky gowns, and the swimwear will make you feel like a million bucks when you slip into it on that honeymoon of yours. Murielle’s @lafilledo Instagram account is peppered with empowering missives that will also give you a boost – we recommend following it at your earliest convenience. Miss Crabb