About Us

What is Project Fashion?

Project Fashion Wellington provides a platform for budding Wellington designers seeking to build their own fashion label - providing our emerging talent with support, exposure, direction and contacts.

Project Fashion is the fast track to fashion industry success. Chosen participants have exclusive

access to a purpose-built fully equipped studio as they assemble a six-outfit capsule collection for

exhibition at a high value and well-publicised show.

There is a high expectation that designers will complete a comprehensive, commercially viable

collection, working under the watchful eye of founder Kate Diana Spencer and industry mentors.

Previous participants have seen great success both here and abroad, and this year is expected to be

even bigger and better.


Why Project Fashion?


Because the industry needs us. Since the early ‘80s the industry has been shrinking – skilled people are retiring, service industries are closing. Project Fashion provides important skills and insights to help emerging designers succeed, faster. Because the world wants local. Lovers of fashion are crying out for a new, sustainable vision from the fashion industry. Project Fashion helps support designers to build local brands for a local community. Because we care.


Project Fashion was created when we saw that there were really talented, fashion graduates struggling to take the next step. We wanted to be there for these young people, to encourage them, help bridge the gap, but with a solid dose of business reality also. Because we can. The world is a busy place and there simply aren’t enough people prepared and able to mentor the next generation. Project Fashion was created to provide the conduit between those who can help and those who need it.

Kate Diana Spencer


Kate is the driving force and visionary behind Project Fashion. She is passionate about travel, friends + whanau, art, cultural experiences and of course fashion!

She saw a need for emerging local designers to be given a platform to take their work to the next level. As a creative who knows the industry inside and out, Kate recognised mentoring as critical to success in the industry. 


Kate has diverse education and experience in fashion, screen printing, graphic design, events, business and project management.

When not coming up with innovative ideas for Project Fashion, she is working at the best venue in New Zealand – Public Trust Hall.

Sue Bowerman


Born and bred in Wainuiomata, Sue grew up wanting to help people. Initially this led her to a ground breaking career as New Zealand’s first female Traffic Officer.

Time spent at the Wellington Arts Centre led her to founding the Bowerman School of Design in 1986 which specialised in screen-printing and fashion design. The school produced costumes for opera, ballet, television and film, as well as fostering the development of many Wellington artists. During the Versace Exhibition at Te Papa, the Bowerman School created a replica atelier studio in the museum.

Now retired, Sue specialises in looking fabulous and growing old disgracefully.

PFW would like to thank-


Wellington City Council arts team, for believing in us from day one, Maurice and Kaye Clark and Kristelle Plimmer letting us have the honour of using the beautiful Public Trust Hall, City Gallery, Te Papa, Practical School of Philosophy, The teams that have put together our amazing shows over the years- Jaye Glam Morgan, Paul Blomfield, Erin Horton, Simon Murdoch, Semi Cho, Jennifer Lal, Daniel Williams, Amanduh La, Angela Lewis, Emma Vause, Justine Boyd, Edward J Woolhouse, Freddie Aitchinson, Judy Virago, Eva Rebenschied. All our volunteers thank you we couldn’t have done it without you. 

All of our gorgeous models from over the years- especially those who have walked multiple shows (you know whom you are.xx) our queens, everyone from Urban Dream Brokerage, Sweet Georgia Cruising, Arnon Levy, Darragh Sheppard, Hanna and the team at The Fabric Store, David Henry at Sharp, Booker Spalding, Mike Horlor for putting together a great little small business course for our designers, Janet and the team at Bolton Hotel, The Fabric Warehouse, Ash at Garage Project, Everyone who has sponsored our shows. 


Our Graphics people - Larissa Mc Millan for this website, Mel James for our epic posters, Sam Brown, Mark Glatzel for our branding, Steven Hansen, Conor Macloed and Bex Brent for videos, David Henry at Sharp, Our Photographers - Peter Trakadas, Bex Mc Gill, Jo Mohi, Paul Maka Kea and Shannon Clamp, Our Hair people Brixton Cowie and the Willis York team and David Payle and the Matt Forsman team’s, Kate Russell, Our Make-Up teams - headed by Caroline Adams and Kayla Davies, Massey University Fashion School and Fashion Tech.

All our speakers at our mentoring session for parting with your knowledge.


Our mentors and our designers- We are so lucky to have worked with so many inspiring people.


Everyone who has come to our shows and supported us- Thank you for keeping us going.

Project Fashion is inspired by Oska Blaze Royale. xxxx