Fresh and fun, clean and modern were the themes behind the latest NZ Fashion Festival Campaign creative, all four pulled together with impeccable skill and style by renowned stylist Karen Inderbitzen-Waller.

In our exclusive interview, Karen shares her best style tips and tells us what inspires her work.


Karen Inderbitzen-Waller classes chic Carine Roitfeld, boyish Patti Smith and the daring Courtney Love as her favourite style icons. So, it’s not surprising that someone with such a good eye for style has become the Creative Director for the New Zealand Fashion Festival campaign 2012. Here she shares with us her inspiration, her thoughts on vintage versus imitation clothing and the positives of losing one’s luggage, especially when it means New Fashion takes centre stage.

NZFF. What was the inspiration behind the Fashion Festival Campaign?

KIW. We wanted something very fresh and fun, clean and modern that would appeal to a wide audience of all ages. Fashion doesn’t have to be serious and I think we achieved this with the images.

NZFF. What are you looking forward to most at Fashion Festival 2012?

KIW. Working again with our many talented New Zealand Designers and also our strong contingent of local models who really work hard and enjoy the excitement of the shows. We can’t do it without them and the energy they bring backstage is one of the parts I really love.

NZFF. How important do you think fashion and style is and why?

KIW. I think it’s important as it effects how we feel each day and how we are perceived by others. Life is a film that cannot happen without the costumes!

NZFF. Can you share with us some of your best fashion moments?

KIW. Dressing the Canadian artist Peaches for the Big Day Out 2010 after her costumes got lost in transit. She really embraced the New Zealand designers and ended up loving her outfits after the potential tragedy of it all. It was great that we had the resources here to carry on the shows in the strong nature that she is internationally known for. She took many New Zealand garments with her; she was definitely a fan of the fashion talent here.

NZFF. What is your most favourite and cherished piece in your closet?

KIW. That’s a hard one. I am lucky to have so many amazing one off pieces thanks to the designers I work for. If I had to pick one it would the wedding dresses and tiara’s that Kate Sylvester designed for me for my wedding in 2009.

NZFF. Please share with us some of your best style tips!

KIW. Don’t overdo it! I like simplicity with good fabrics, good cuts and simple accessories and always amazing shoes. I don’t like imitation pieces and would rather have one amazing than a wardrobe full of cheap copies. Vintage items are also crucial for those outings when you worry that someone else will have the same dress. Never happens with vintage. And I love pulling my favourite pieces out when I’m bored with everything else.

NZFF. Do you have any fashion or style icons?

KIW. I have never had one particular style icon, I like to mash a few up. I do like the chic sexy style of Carine Roitfeld, the boyish styles of Jane Birkin and Patti Smith and have always adored the messiness of Courtney Love.


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About nzfashionfestival

Bigger and better than ever before, NZ Fashion Festival is back for 2012- with a brand new location at Auckland’s Shed 10, 5 completely different group shows plus daily hair, beauty and style seminars hosted by the likes of M.A.C and TRESemme... as well as a Designer Garage Sale and a host of FREE events, deals and shoes for you to enjoy around the city!

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