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Out of the shadows

Fashion emerges as new business

IN a span of 10 years, fashion has emerged as a growing new industry in Fiji. This is evidenced in the fact that Fiji Fashion Week (FJFW) celebrates its 10th anniversary this May with a gold theme representing not only glitz and glamour but compassion, courage and passion.

As managing director of FJFW, Ellen Whippy-Knight – who is likely to hand over the management at the end of this year – said that in the last 10 years, the Pacific had found something that they were good at doing. But, she warned, they needed a boost and further development. “I just think that over the last 10 years, we have created an industry, a platform for the government to understand that fashion is a business – an industry that has jobs for every single person who wants to be involved.

“If you think of what the suppliers do to make this industry work, you couldn’t have it done without the machinist, without the stylist, without the cotton, the needles, and basically, you wouldn’t be able to have a dress if you didn’t have the supplies, ” Whippy-Knight said.

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