30 May 2017

Tongan traditional garments turn contemporary in New Zealand

11:59 am on 30 May 2017

Tongan traditional garments with a contemporary look will be showcased for the first time in New Zealand this weekend.

Kanumez Fashion Tongan NZ

Kanumez Fashion Tongan NZ Photo: Kanumez kiekies. David Watson Photography and Kourtney Chante Photography

The Kanumez Fashion Show will display different kinds of 'kiekie', a waist garment worn by Tongan women.

The 'kiekie' is traditionally made out of fibres typically from the hibiscus and the coconut.

Auckland based Fashion designer Mele Tamanilo said it is aimed at encouraging the younger generation to stay with traditional Tongan wear.

"The modern one uses different material such as like fabric and we use different kinds of emblishments like rhinestone and studs and spikes, chains, anything bling bling just to make it more appealing and encourages the younger generation who are always trying to keep up with the fashion, to encourage them to continue to wear the kiekie."

The fashion show will take place at Auckland's Tamaki College this Saturday at 7:30pm.