Dunedin designer’s passion big winner at Hokonui awards

Designer Vicki Taylor-Blair, of Dunedin, walks down the runway alongside  a model wearing  her...
Designer Vicki Taylor-Blair, of Dunedin, walks down the runway alongside a model wearing her award of excellence winning gown at the Hokonui Fashion Awards, in Gore, on Saturday. Photo: Margaret Phillips
A hairstylist by trade but with  a burning passion for fashion, Dunedin’s Vicki Taylor-Blair won top honours at the 30th Hokonui Fashion Awards in Gore on Saturday.

Mrs Taylor-Blair won the Mataura Licensing Trust award of excellence for her entry in the open night life section, which she also won earlier in the evening.

The cream  garment, with intricate flowers along the front and long-stemmed pink gloves was a hit with the audience.

As she was named the winner, Mrs Taylor-Blair’s friends gave a deafening cheer as she made her way down the catwalk with her design worn by a model at her side.

Mrs Taylor-Blair said taking home the big prize was "amazing, just  amazing’.

"It’s a real buzz, a big adrenaline rush," she said.

However, Mrs Taylor-Blair’s favourite moment of the night was seeing her garment as a full package on a model.

"It’s just such a great feeling to see everything come together. That’s the  real prize.

"I have to thank the models, the make-up and the hair stylists for making it look amazing," she said.

Earlier in the evening, she also had three men’s garments on display in the collections section, one of which she wore.  Mrs Taylor-Blair is no stranger to the Hokonui Fashion Awards having entered for the past four years.

Last year, she won the menswear award and was highly commended in the wool award section.

After last year’s achievements, she began creating this year’s winning design.

"It takes about a year for me to get everything designed and put together properly."

Five years ago, Mrs Taylor-Blair took up sewing lessons and had been designing ever since.

"I haven’t been to design school or anything like that. It’s just a passion. It’s an extension from my hairstyling," she said.

Mrs Taylor-Blair planned to enter the Hokonui Fashion Awards again next year but would try her hand in a different category.

"I like to do something different every time. It’s exciting."

- By Kayla Hodge

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