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Author: Melinda Collins

Denim Dreaming

Denim Dreaming: Denim is reinvented and reinvigorated

Every decade flaunts a scandalous aesthetic which rides against the tide of convention. In the 1950s, it was denim that was making sartorial waves.

Denim Dreaming


Having found its fashionable feet in 1871 when the iconic ‘jean’ pant was invented by Jacob Davis and Levi Strauss, denim has had a somewhat troubled upbringing since the 1950s when jeans emerged as the unofficial uniform of youth counter-culture.

Popularised by Marlon Brando and James Dean, jeans were torn, patched and intentionally abused by stone and acid washes, demonstrating the anti-authoritarian reputation of jeans and their wearers.
While at the time these rebellious revolutionaries stirred controversy with their sartorial courage, their visions have not only endured but been contemporised, and today denim is reinvented and reinvigorated season after sartorial season.


Denim Dreaming
Denim Dreaming


Its modern manifestation continues to court favour with the who’s who of fashionable circles, where it has since emerged as a timeless addition to your sartorial portfolio.
We put our fashionable noses to the ground to find out how this seasonal staple is being reimagined in upcoming collections and how you can up your denim game.


Denim Dreaming
Denim Dreaming


Mum jeans:

We probably don’t have to tell you that high-rise, non-stretch, vintage-inspired mum jeans are everywhere right now, and they’re a good investment because, with their timeless, flattering aesthetic and ability to suit everyone, they’ll likely never fall completely out of favour.


Gorgeously Groovy:

Yes, relaxed, full-length jeans in straight and even gently flared silhouettes are making their way back into our lives. A little groovy and a little 90s, they are practically made for a small heel and, with a little bit of a roll-up, you can go from dressy to casual with one pair.


A walk on the dark side:

Forget about acid wash or so-light-it’s-almost-white denim. Denim is taking a walk on the wild side this sartorial season, with dark wash denim trending in a very big way – dresses, skirts and shorts included!

Beddy Buys

Beddy Buys: Quality slumber spaces

When it comes to our slumber spaces, quality counts. After all, if the average night’s sleep is eight hours, then one sleeps for a third of one’s life.

Beddy Buys


Granted, for many of us, eight hours of sleep is but a distant dream, which makes it even more important to favour quality over quantity in the bedroom. Because, the busier our waking lives are, the more important the role of this sacred space to help us rest and recharge.
In 2018, functionality is key in the bedroom, which begs the question, how do we incorporate form and function here?


Beddy Buys
Beddy Buys


For a soothing space, decorate in soothing shades of lilac and grey or blue and pink. Tactile and textured fabrics will promote comfort and sleep-promoting scents such as lavender always have a home in the bedroom.
We’re taking a less is more approach to the space overall; less technology, less decorative elements and less clutter. Conservative design with modern clean lines continues to define the contemporary bedroom furniture market this year, while the wabi-sabi philosophy continues to reign supreme.


Beddy Buys
Beddy Buys

An easy, carefree concept to apply, wabi-sabi is about the beauty that can be found in imperfection. Life isn’t perfect, our homes aren’t perfect – and that’s okay.
We’ve put together a mood board of the things that sweet dreams are made of.

Luxe Leather

Luxe Leather: Leather Fashion

When it comes to flash fabrics, leather is held in pretty high regard. While leather can add luxe to your wardrobe, the latest leather looks aren’t all dark and moody. There is after all, so much more to this timeless staple than biker jackets and boots. So, take a walk on the wild side and be a lady of leather.

Luxe Leather

Strong, tough, provocative, leather represents strength and that’s what you want when you’re
heading to the office. An investment watch or briefcase are power dressing at its finest.

You may have the crisp white shirt and patent leather shoes to make any mother in law proud, but a
pair of leather pants can add some much-need edge to a play-it-safe look.

Brown leather is classic and sophisticated. It looks crisp and clean with white and can be thrown
over a casual look to completely alter the ensemble at face value.

Despite its tough exterior, leather can soften easily. Pair that leather pencil skirt with a light
silk blouse to rock a completely different vibe.

An investment piece, real leather actually looks better with age. So purchase wisely and it will
stand the test of time.

Incorporate some luxe leather into your wardrobe from the ground up, with leather looks on offer
from heels through to some cool new kicks.


Luxe Leather
Luxe Leather
Luxe Leather
Luxe Leather
Luxe Leather
Walk on the dark side

Walk on the Dark Side: Why not eschew the starker for the darker this season?

They say blondes have the most fun and, while we’ve been on the blonde bandwagon when it comes to our timber furnishings for the longest of times, furniture is set to take a walk on the dark side this season.

Walk on the dark side

From side tables, consoles and coffee tables to cabinets, dining tables or shelving, furniture in darker timbers is on the rise again, as we opt for walnut, ebony or even completely black tones.
If your home dons a neutral palette when it comes to walls, flooring or furniture, putting its dark foot forward with a statement timber piece can add drama, interest and warmth to your space.

Pair dark woods with off whites for modern minimalism, or some more down to earth décor for bohemian warmth. Whatever your aesthetic, these glamorous dark woods offer a timeless touch of retro glamour, while gold and brass handles and legs are the perfect partnership.
So why not eschew the starker for the darker this season, using our mood board for inspiration.

Walk on the Dark Side
Walk on the Dark Side
Walk on the Dark Side
Walk on the Dark Side
Singing the Blues

Singing the Blues: Blue fashion

There’s no more versatile shade than blue, with sartorial selections from pastel to navy making their seasonal debut.

Singing the Blues

Certainly no one hit wonder, blue has been making a splash everywhere from the beauty counter to the red carpet and, when it comes to taking our cues from the top, we’re taking guidance from Ralph Lauren, Michael Kors and Oscar de la Renta.
No matter how you choose to embrace the watery hue, there’s something for everyone in this sartorial shade because, although we’re still hung up on the beautiful deep navys of winter, lighter palettes are making an appearance in time for the warmer months.

Even blue eyeshadow, which has developed somewhat of a bad rap over the years, has seen a coming of age, with a wave of designers adopting the trend on the runway.
We have discovered it splashed across bags, shoes and watches as well as nail polishes and even homewares and accessories.
So quench your colour craving with our mood board of our favourite blues. We’re sure it won’t be long before you’re singing the blues yourself.


Singing the Blues
Singing the Blues
Singing the Blues
Singing the Blues
Metropol Cover

Colour by numbers: Updating the Home

With colours, fabrics, furnishings and accents all part of the redecorating equation, updating your home is easier said than done. The art of creating a space that makes an impact takes creative courage and a sense of conviction that you know what you want.

Colour by numbers

But as with anything, there’s some clever rules that will make the task seem a whole lot less arduous and decorating your space can be as easy as 60-30-10.
The classic rule of three – which has been put to everything from marketing, to floral arrangements and even writing – is a simplified way to create beautiful rooms with cohesion. In this case, three colour families are used to add balance and depth to a room.

How this plays out in your room is that 60 percent of a room’s colour is achieved through a dominant wall colour, flooring and large-scale furniture, like the white walls in our beautiful cover image by Fenton and Fenton; 30 percent of colour will come from furniture, textiles and lighting; while 10 percent, not unlike jewellery, provides that little something special.
Get clever playing with ratios and get some colour confidence when it comes to decorating your home.

Jack Tame

Jack Tame Going Places: Q&A Jack Tame

From a Christchurch upbringing, to an international correspondent in the US to Breakfast’s Auckland hotseat, Jack Tame’s career has taken him places – both in the literal and figurative sense of the expression. Every continent on earth, in fact.

Jack Tame
“I always liked the idea of being an eyewitness to history”


He’s covered the Christchurch earthquakes, the Pike River Mine disaster, Hurricane Sandy, the Sandy Hook Elementary School mass shooting and the Boston Marathon bombings. He sat through the David Bain retrial in 2009 and reported on the Rugby World Cup for CNN.
And he’s still found time to learn New Zealand’s indigenous language, receiving recognition at the 14th Māori Language awards last year for championing the use of te reo Māori. Metropol caught up with Jack ahead of Maori Language Week next month to talk about learning te reo and growing up in Christchurch.


Did you have a lot to do with Te Ao Māori growing up in Christchurch and what prompted your decision to learn te reo?

I didn’t have heaps to do with Te Ao Māori although I’ve always been interested in Māori history and culture. Ironically, the real turning point for me and the language came when I was living overseas. I was living in Spanish Harlem in New York City and all of my neighbours could speak at least two languages. When they asked me about New Zealand’s indigenous language, I was ashamed I couldn’t speak more reo.

How important is it to you that New Zealanders are given the opportunity to hear the correct pronunciation through the likes of the media?

I think good media reflects and celebrates its audience, which is an academic way of saying people like to see themselves on TV. I’m lucky to work in a diverse workplace, and on Breakfast we absolutely strive to pronounce reo as best we can. Te Ao Māori is at the heart of the New Zealand identity – no matter whether you’re Māori or not. I think all Kiwis have a responsibility to make an effort with the language and that reo is at the front line of Māori culture.

How long have you been learning te reo Māori for and how easy/difficult was it to pick up?

I’ve only been learning since the start of last year and I’m still pretty average! I go to uni one day a week and I really enjoy the mental challenge of learning something new. It’s never easy to hit the books after rising at 3.30am but our class is really diverse and I’ve made some good friends. One of my current classmates is a 74-year old Pākehā! Though I’m fortunate to have a pretty good ear for pronunciation, I still find the grammar really difficult

What attracted you to the journalism industry?

It sounds really cheesy, but I always liked the idea of being an eyewitness to history. I wanted to experience the full richness of life. I wanted to travel. I wanted to meet interesting people. I love telling stories.

Who have been some of your biggest career inspirations?

I deeply appreciated the support I received from Sir Paul Holmes and it was a huge privilege to assume his slot on Newstalk ZB. I’ve also been fortunate to work alongside some incredible journalists and broadcasters such as Lisa Owen, Mark Crysell and Hilary Barry. Perhaps my favourite writer is the late A. A. Gill, whose words transfer from the page into my mind as if by beautiful osmosis. And I’d have to admit my mum’s insatiable work ethic has probably rubbed off…

Having grown up in Christchurch, how much does the city mean to you?

I had a wonderful childhood and carry the fondest memories. I spent years of my life mountain-biking the Port Hills, mucking around at Taylor’s Mistake and shivering in Sydenham Park. Covering the earthquakes was both a devastating and uplifting experience. I try to visit a few times a year and I’m always inspired to see progress.

You’ve had an impressive career already, what do the next 12 months have in store for you?

Early starts and six-day work weeks! But I’ll try and take the summer break to disappear for a few weeks overseas… Lebanon and Jordan are high on the list.

Metropol Editor Melinda Collins

Editor’s Perspective: Miriama Kamo

Miriama Kamo was once quoted as saying of her beautiful Grey Lynn villa, “Homes are to be lived in, stomped in, danced in, run in – enjoyed.
“If it gets dirty or broken – well, it’s just stuff.”

Metropol Editor Melinda Collins
Metropol Editor Melinda Collins

I suspect this isn’t far removed from her philosophy on life. Because, despite playing a starring role on New Zealand television for more than two decades, Miriama remains warm, engaging, open and honest.
She grew up in South New Brighton, a couple of streets back from the beach, with a warm and loving family and, despite the fact that she was drawn to journalism because of the desire to tell other people’s stories, now it’s our turn to tell hers.

Miriama has packed a lot into her life already – both personally and professionally – but as she tells us, she still has goals, plans and aspirations that will continue to keep her busy. “I hope to fill this life up and at the end of it look back and say that it was a life worn right out by all the good that was had and all the good that was done,” she says in our Q+A on pages 16 and 17.
A busy, over-committed life is something I can definitely relate to on every level. It’s a full life but, like Miriama’s, it’s full of beauty and warmth and all kinds of wonderful. Despite the fact that I don’t get nearly enough sleep, live on coffee and adrenalin and don’t remember what ‘me’ time is, I’m ok with that.
After all, you only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.


Bold Beauty: Add colour to your ‘robe

Life doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom when it comes to catering to the cold. With some of our most beloved designers plating up a course of statement shades this season, it’s time to embrace colour.


So we’ve put together our top tips to put your brightest foot forward in this season’s rainbow hues.

Bit of bold

If neutral is the name of your style game, then this one’s for you! Accessories are the easiest way to amp up an outfit. Add some vibrancy with just a ‘bit of bold’ – that is some red tassel earrings or a hot rainbow cross-body bag. Shoes are another exceptional way to add some colour to your life.

Opposites attract

Opposites attract is the very premise behind colour blocking, which involves pairing opposites on the colour wheel together to make complementary combinations. When it comes to your wardrobe, this means an orange sweater and navy cigarette pants. You don’t need to be loud and proud, colour blocking can work equally as well with pastel shades.


Top or toe

Rather than going bold from top to toe, why not try top or toe? Choosing one element of colour for your outfit creates a strong focal point and the rest of the pieces nicely complement the look. Keep the rest of your clothing and accessories neutral, think a hot pink top with black pants.



One colour wonder

Choose a colour and tone which suits you and go all out! Keep your accessories neutral in either black, white or beige tones to balance out the look. The key to wearing one colour well is to either match everything together with precision or mix and match noticeably different within of a colour family.




Metropol Editor Melinda Collins

Editor’s Perspective: On Health

After having each of my three small humans, there was nothing better than the feeling of being able to lay in bed on my tummy, without a 9 pound baby encroaching on my space.

Metropol Editor Melinda Collins
Metropol Editor Melinda Collins

Of course, prior to each pregnancy, I had been mindlessly laying on my flat tummy for many months, in fact years, with no reference point to how lucky I was.
It’s easy to take what we have for granted. In fact, many of the luxuries we experience in New Zealand on a day to day basis are luxuries many don’t get – freedom, access to fresh water, even our healthcare system.
Māia Health Foundation was designed to take Canterbury’s healthcare system from good to great and, to do this, it has enlisted help from some pretty inspiring locals, including Jake Bailey.

Jake has been through some of the most trying circumstances imaginable and, despite this, or perhaps even because of it, he continues to focus his time and energy into doing good. We talk to Jake on page 6 about the inspiring life lessons he has taken from his battle with cancer and how he is giving back to the healthcare system that has done so much for him.
Life is precious and, at least as far as we know, we’re only given one. Why not remind yourself how lucky you are to be healthy, alive and to have your loved ones with you, or simply that you can sleep on your tummy. I challenge every single one of our readers to re-frame their day to day annoyances and focus on how precious all of our lives are because, as we know, things can change in a blink of an eye.
After all, those wrinkles show we had something to laugh about; that round tummy shows we had food on our tables and those grey hairs show we had family to worry about. Food for thought?