Kharl WiRepa first Māori designer to feature in Vogue

By Leah Te Whata
  • Auckland
  • Waikato/Bay of Plenty
  • North Island: East Coast

Te Whānau ā Apanui fashion designer Kharl WiRepa is the first Māori to have his clothing line, Kharl WiRepa Couture, featured in Vogue Magazine.

The British Vogue September edition is an international collection special. Kharl WiRepa describes the edition as the 'holy grail' of fashion.

WiRepa's clothing line has been selected among Vogue’s top 22 ‘Designers of the Future.’

His career in fashion began at the age of fifteen, working as a retail assistant at Supre. WiRepa says that his passion for fashion and all things ‘glam’ was born out of witnessing his grandmother and her friends prepare for church, as well as watching old-time Hollywood films. 

WiRepa says that the international attention gained through his Vogue achievement will generate global interest for Māori and Polynesian clothing designers, models, and photographers.