new zealand’s brightest fashion stars are working together to raise awareness of family abuse

In the new zine ‘La La La’, super stylists and Kanye West collaborators Sebastian Hunt and Dylan Richards are raising money for charity by dressing kids in the country’s best looks.

by Wendy Syfret
08 June 2016, 2:55am

Earlier this year, three-year-old New Zealand boy Moko Rangitoheriri passed away following days of horrific abuse at the hands of a family friend. He had been entrusted into their care while his mother was in hospital, and was subjected to a myriad of abuse that eventually resulted in his death. The incident rippled through New Zealand, where child and family abuse rates have long been a national concern. Last year it was reported that a child is admitted to a New Zealand hospital every second day as a result of assault, neglect or maltreatment. Nationally a woman is killed every three weeks, and a child every five, by a member of their own family.

Following Moko's death a group of New Zealand fashion creatives came together, searching for a way to make a tangible impact in a climate of mistreatment towards women and children. Calling on their extensive network of friends and collaborators, they drew in some of the country's best design talent; all of whom were equally affected by Moko's death.

The final product was a zine called La La La. Named after Moko's favourite song by Naughty Boy and Sam Smith, it features images of kids styled in clothes from the country's biggest designers. Zambesi, Kate Sylvester, Karen Walker, Nom*D, Huffer, Stolen Girlfriends Club, Eugenie, Ingrid Starnes, Wynn Hamlyn and Paris Georgia all took part in the publication. The proceeds from La La La will go to domestic abuse charity Shine. 

Speaking to i-D, Project Director Angela Bevan explained that they decided to style the piece on kids because "We just loved the idea of how it would look, and it was a way to incorporate the designers' work with a celebration of children." Kiwi stylist duo Sebastian Hunt and Dylan Richards, who spend most of their professional life working as Kim Kardashian and Kanye West's styling team, joined the group to put together the looks. 

Reflecting on the project Angela Bevan continues, "I hold a very firm belief that people should do what they can for their communities: do what you can, with what you have. We can't all work on the frontline, but we all have skills and there will always be a way to use those skills for good."

Ultimately the group hope the project will not only result in significant donations to Shine but also provide an "extended awareness of how bad our problem is, as a nation, and who and what is out there in terms of steps toward a solution."

La La La is available to purchase by donation online from Saturday 11 June. It will also be distributed through New Zealand daycares and the designers' stores.


Images via La La La Zine.

la la la
domestic abuse
Stolen Girlfriends Club
Karen Walker
family abuse
kate sylvester
paris georgia