Designer's possums in the spotlight

17:00, Sep 28 2012
denise laurie wow
HELLO POSSUMS: This entry in the Bizarre Bra category of the World of WearableArt Awards – modelled by Sophie Petley – won Lorneville designer Denise Laurie second place in the first-timers section.

Invercargill designer Denise Laurie came second in the First Time Entrant category at last night's Brancott Estate World of WearableArt Awards show in Wellington.

Laurie's Lunar Duo entry in the Bizarre Bra category - a bra made of possum fur and car tyre - won her a $1000 prize.

She was one of two Southland designers to be named as finalists earlier this year and one of 37 designers to win an award during last night's two-hour art, theatre, and music show.

Laurie - who designs school uniforms for Southland schools from her Lorneville studio - had to learn taxidermy to complete her entry, which she said was "a tribute to the poor old possum".

The WOW Supreme award went to Chinese students Yuru Ma and Mengyue Wu, of Shanghai, for their design Delight of Life. The pair also won second place with their Revive entry.

Dame Suzie Moncrieff said all the winners showed an inherent understanding of design and craftsmanship that optimised a quality expected in WOW, now in its 24th year.

"The 2012 winners have shown outstanding artistic brilliance in creating original and innovative works."

This year there were 164 garments by 168 designers selected as finalists.

Nineteen of the 35 awards went to New Zealand-designed garments. Sixteen awards were won by garments made by international designers.

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The Southland Times