Inspired by Māori art and culture, Adrienne Whitewood takes traditional concepts and invents unique silhouettes exploring fabric manipulation and technology. Her ethos is about creating wearable clothing for women who want an emotional connection to what they're wearing. All designed right here in Rotorua.
In 2010 Adrienne Whitewood (Rongowhakaata tribe) debuted her first collection at New Zealand Fashion Week. Since then she has gone on to win more accolades and show her garments on several catwalks, eventually opening her own boutique store in Rotorua in 2013. Her second store, on Victoria Street in Wellington, opened a couple years ago.
In her shops you'll find beautiful, colourful clothing and accessories, and unique jewellery. "I love to think of print as a way to give the body movement through design," she says. "Designing using Māori print is a way I feel I can make that connection to my culture."
Adrienne's passion stems from her fascination with Māori art, history and tikanga, and inspiration by her home town of Rotorua. She graduated from AUT in 2009 with a degree in fashion before she went on to study Ngā Mahi Whakaairo and Tikanga Māori at then-Waiariki Institute of Technology (now Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology) in Rotorua.