iD's humble beginnings recalled as week launches

An appreciative audience enjoys a welcome speech by iD Dunedin Fashion Week committee chairwoman Susie Staley, at the official launch of the 15th annual event in the Dunedin Centre last night. Photo by Peter McIntosh.Once a dream, now a success.

Organisers of iD Dunedin Fashion Week acknowledged its humble beginnings at the official launch of the 15th anniversary event in the Dunedin Centre last night. 

iD committee chairwoman Susie Staley welcomed about 200 people at the launch, including international guest and Paris-based designer Martin Grant.

''Fifteen years ago, a group of Dunedin designers came together with a dream of creating a fashion event, and five years later the iD organising committee joined with the team at Otago Polytechnic to establish an international awards event like no other. Now, it's sold out.

''We've established an international fashion calendar of official and associated events that grow year on year and raise the profile of Dunedin as a centre for fashion, design, innovation and education,'' she said.

Ms Staley also thanked sponsors and the designers who took time out of their busy schedules to participate, including the many young design graduates from around the world who travelled to Dunedin at their own expense.

Founding iD Dunedin Fashion Show designer and committee member Margi Robertson, of Nom*D, also spoke at the launch.

She explained how the shows had grown from small, informal displays to professional runway events of an international standard.

''Back in the day a lot of it was done for love and the people of Dunedin supported it so well. It's provided us with something we can really look back on.''

The week of iD activities, exhibitions, promotions and shows culminates in the iD International Designer Awards at the Town Hall on Thursday and the iD Dunedin Fashion Show at the Dunedin Railway Station on Friday and Saturday.