The NGCB Paradise Runway staged on Saturday 18th September saw 11 amazing designers come together in a showcase of color and culture as they took to the runway with their amazing works of art.
The first ever inaugural fashion event has been put together by Ms Philma Kelegai and Ms Ziya Rayani who have both been working tirelessly over the past few months with sponsors, designers, models and many who have worked behind the scenes to bring this event to a fruition.
Ms Kelegai, Director of PNG Fashion Week and Ms Rayani, Managing Director of Glow Boutique both shared the same sentiments outlining the growth of the fashion industry in the country and the challenges faced by all who are directly involved.
Also, featuring for the first time last night was the PNG Fashion Awards organised by the PNG Fashion Foundation which has officially launched this year.
“One of the reasons why we have started the awards is because we believe that sometimes people are not recognised for what they are doing for the industry and so putting together the PNG Fashion Foundation will enable us to encompass everyone in the industry and give credit where it is due,” Ms Rayani said.
As part of the first ever round of awards, winners were announced in the following categories:
Innovation Award presented to Anna Amos, Creative Director of PNG Fashion & Design Week and Owner of AA Tribal
Model of the Year presented to Samuel Tupou, model at PNG Fashion Week
Emerging Designer of the Year, presented to Cynthia Chapman with her winning collection ‘Paradise Sunsets and Silhouettes’
Established Designer of the Year presented to Tabu Pelei Warupi, Owner of the TABU label with her winning collection ‘Birds of a Feather’
Ms Kelegai said that for a very long time, the PNG fashion industry has worked in isolation and so the aim of the PNG Fashion Foundation is to bring everyone together and unite them for the greater good of the industry.
“The foundation was an idea that we had a while ago and it manifested because we saw the need to bring everyone together and to create a platform that could unite despite our diverse backgrounds.”
“As Papua New Guineans, we know how to unite and so this is another way of doing so and we’d like to build bridges and work with everyone going forward.”
“We hope that everyone in the industry can join us in furthering this organization as it is for everyone that is involved in the industry,” Ms Kelegai said.
The NGCB Paradise Runway has been made possible through the support and assistance received from numerous business houses and sponsors with the National Gaming Control Board being the main sponsor of the first ever inaugural Paradise Runway.