PNG fashion industry

The challenging pace of fashion in PNG


The challenge however is that when PNG steps up its game in fashion, other Pacific Islands will always be a few more steps ahead, as is the statement made by one local designer Yana Copeland.

The project runway that took place over the weekend, showed something more beautiful – and it was collaboration between designers.

This is hope enough.

And it was highlighted by the patron of MPIP PNG, Lynda Babao O’Neill, wife of the Prime Minister.

A walk to talk climate change

This year, it’s a walk to talk climate change.

PNG Fashion and Design Week will be hosting its runway from the 5th to 7th October with the theme: Fashion x Climate Change.

Incoming CEO Christopher Lam said climate change is a pressing issue that needed to be further known, hence the theme.

He noted PNG, as an island nation, is facing the issue mostly through rising sea levels and unpredictable weather patterns.

Nugent’s view on PNG fashion industry


Lily magazine began publication in the country 4 years ago. And Nugent says it was harder to source someone who would strike the perfect pose or find a perfect wardrobe.

“We had no home grown fashion and modelling industry. So we had to get someone and then teach the models ourselves. Most outfits available were from China and couldn’t fit the Melanesian built.

“We only had few pioneer designers like Sarah Todd,” she said.

Compared to today, Nugent says there is a tidal wave of designers.

Independence Runway beckons potential stars

The Runway, organised by the World Supermodel PNG, will feature a variety of PNG theme creations from local talents.

Phylma Kelegai of WS PNG said this is to provide a free platform for Small Medium Enterprises through aligning with events such as the independence.

“We understand that it is very difficult for SME’s to market their products so are providing one for them. This Runway is our way of giving back to the community,” she said.

11yo designer joins PNG fashion industry

Up until the PNG Fashion Week in August, designing dresses was only Andrea’s passion.

“She would draw amazing dresses and show it to us but you know, it was her thing and we never thought much about it,” says her mother, Colleen.

Colleen was introduced to a whole new world when she decided to bring her daughter along to the PNG Fashion Week.

“When I saw the advertisement in the papers, I thought why not, this is her hobby,” Colleen says.

Growth in fashion industry gives birth to modelling

This is evident over the few years where the fashion platforms are being set. 

Partnership to lift profile of PNG fashion

Founder and director of Pacific Runway Fashion, Failepou Peni today announced the partnership of the two bodies.

Pacific Runway Fashion, staged annually in Australia, was formed to recognise and give a prestigious platform for designers of the Pacific at large, also to put a mark on its Australian Fashion Calendar. 

Director Peni said, the partnership now means that PNG designers, through PNGFW, automatically secure a place on this platform.

Fashion designers appreciate workshop

Designers Natasha Tamanabae and Eva Pokawin, who attended the first day yesterday, have already expressed satisfaction.

Natasha of Elite Fashion Club said many designers, like herself, are very busy.

“I’m satisfied with what I’m seeing on the workshop.

“Having everyone here together in one place and telling us how they can support and help us, especially Small Medium Enterprise and National Development Bank, I really appreciate it,” she said.

Natasha also highlighted the importance to be educated on Intellectual Property, a topic that will be covered today.

Developing the Fashion Industry in Partnership with the Government

Director Janet Sios said this is for the benefit of the designers and furthermore impact PNG’s Small to Medium Enterprise sector.

Sios said at the moment, they are in talks with the government and also trying to get other influential parties on board.

Sios stressed the importance of their relationship with the Department of Trade and Industry.

Platform set to promote local designers

Following from the Project Runway on July 30 that saw 10 local designers stage 71 outfits, the PNG Fashion week on August 20 will feature seven local designers.

From a designers view, these events are blessings as described by Natasha Tamanabae of Elite Fashion Club.

Tamanabae is an upcoming designer who has been making a name in the industry with her unique BAIWA brand and using these platforms to promote her brand.

“We need a platform, a place where we can sell our staff and also be recognised and also to promote PNG.