Company of Strangers founder Sara Munro speaks about her
journey from unknown workroom cutter to leading Dunedin
fashion designer, as part of iD Dunedin Fashion Week
yesterday. Photo by Stephen Jaquiery.
Sara Munro has come a long way from hand-stitching
rosettes for Nom*D while watching movies in her Wellington
The Dunedin designer has turned her Company of Strangers and
Strangelove labels into commercial successes and, to a
degree, has Margi Robertson to thank.
Mrs Munro spoke about her career yesterday as part of iD
Dunedin Fashion Week.
Her love of fashion eventually led to her job of adapting
patterns to measure in a Wellington workroom, and doing
artisanal work at home for Nom*D.
''Margi would send me up things and I would sit on the couch
and hand-sew, then she needed someone to make samples in her
workroom and I came back to Dunedin.''
Mrs Munro spent six years at Nom*D, learning about commercial
fashion and making the odd mistake.
''I once over-ordered about 300m of fabric.''
She had a brief fling with the notion of becoming a
photographer, then turned back to design and created
jewellery for sale in a friend's boutique.
Her pieces were popular and she branched out into bags and
leather wear, then clothing.
Mrs Munro said, in retrospect, she had long yearned to
develop her own brand, inclusive of clothing accessories and
shoes, which Company of Strangers embodied.
Her flagship store in George St was also a dream come true.
Designing was a collaborative process, in which she and her
workroom staff bounced ideas off one another.
Pieces approved by all were selected for collections, Mrs
''In a range there will be about 60 pieces, probably about 24
styles, and each is broken down into different fabrics and
maybe two or three colours,'' Mrs Munro said.
Collaborations with artists have also become signature
Company of Strangers style.
Mrs Munro will show her latest collection on the runway at
tomorrow's iD Dunedin Fashion Show, which will also be held