Father inspired fashion

Ruby Van der Zanden, of Dunedin, holds a piece from her collection, a jacket with a photo of her...
Ruby Van der Zanden, of Dunedin, holds a piece from her collection, a jacket with a photo of her late father Tom on it. PHOTO: CHRISTINE O’CONNOR
The death of a young Dunedin woman’s father was the inspiration behind her fashion collection, which has been selected as a finalist in the iD International Emerging Designer Awards.

Ruby Van der Zanden, of Dunedin, was announced as one of 33 finalists from 14 countries in the awards, which will be held online with a virtual show on June 5.

The 22-year-old Otago Polytechnic fashion graduate said in late 2018, she lost her father Tom Van der Zanden suddenly.

"It was awful and really shaking for our family.’’

The death heavily influenced her collection of garments.

"I went into my third year [at Otago Polytechnic] and knew for my final collection I would round up my time there by remembering him.

The collection, ‘‘Why Not? We’re on Holiday’’, honoured her dad as joyful, light-hearted and even silly, and remembers him as he was, she said.

"I said to him when I started polytech my goal was to be in an iD fashion week and I’ve done it.

"It’s incredibly special."

Another former Otago Polytechnic fashion student ,Vera Kalugina, was also named as one of the 33 finalists.

Finalists’ work will be showcased in a video produced by NHNZ Dunedin, rather than a show, for the first time in iD Dunedin’s 16 years.

iD Dunedin Fashion Inc co-chair Margo Barton said Covid-19 had provided new opportunities for the show.

"As all judging will be undertaken remotely it has enabled us to tap into leading designers from around the world.

"We’re looking forward to announcing an all-star line-up of international jurors from throughout the world shortly.

"The finalists will be delighted to learn who is assessing their work."

The iD Dunedin Designer Show will be held in February 2021.

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