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Collection highlights

Tāniko: Māori fashion

See Tāniko on display in He Taonga Māori - Māori Court

Rotorua-based designer Adrienne Whitewood's work on the catwalk.

Rotorua-based designer Adrienne Whitewood displays the vitality and exuberance that describe contemporary Māori fashion.

This award-winning garment is an example of the textile and fibre innovations of one of today’s Māori designers. As a new addition to the Museum’s collection, it connects to customary Māori concepts and techniques. The designer of this work, Adrienne Whitewood (Rongowhaakata), is part of a new wave of talented Māori fashion designers taking their unique style to international audiences.

Whitewood brings a unique way of expressing her connection to customary weaving practices as she fuses traditional techniques with modern designs.

Her work is inspired by Māori art and culture, and in this piece she combines tāniko (finger weaving) with an inventive use of fabric manipulation and construction. Whitewood, who gained a Bachelor of Design from AUT in 2009, says her aim is to create modern clothing with an emotional connection to traditional design.

Her work Tāniko was the Supreme Award Winner of the 2012 Cult Couture Fashion Awards. She was selected to show at New Zealand fashion week with Miromoda in 2011 and 2012.