Budding designer is ready for his career to take off
It was his first time on an air plane. But Liam Julian says he can get used to a jet-setting life style.
The 19-year-old is one of nine fashion design students who have just returned from a six-week trip to India.
Julian and his colleagues, students at New Zealand Institute of Fashion Tech, received the Prime Minister's Scholarship for Asia to travel to the southern city of Coimbatore.
"It was pretty amazing to be selected to go to India. I was excited, and a little bit nervous too," he says.
It all began when paint manufacturer Resene approached the institute with an idea for the students to create styles using colour of their choice from the company's shade card.
The Ranui-resident selected a shade of black called Gumboot. He designed a Swanndri-like jacket and stubbies.
"The design took two weeks from paper to product. I did everything myself. I like the design because it is simple. Most of my designs are like that. I don't complicate stuff."
The youngest of three siblings, Julian says he has always wanted to work in the industry.
His father Linn Hunapo says for a long time his son looked for his thing and finally found his calling in fashion.
"I am proud of him for what he has done and he got an airplane trip out of it. That's pretty good."
Julian says he learned a lot from the Indian sense of style.
"They are far more modest than Kiwis, but they still manage to create good fashion."
The south asian country, Julian says, was a treat to all his senses, but he also learned about a culture that he was completely unfamiliar with.
"We had to travel two hours from Coimbatore to get to the nearest supermarket. The closest Macca's was four hours away, and they don't have a Big Mac, it's called a Maharaja. It is quite spicey."
He was also intrigued by the Indian way of life.
"They have very little, but are very welcoming and hospitable. Their work ethic is also great, they work far much harder for way lesser."