FALE-SHIP: Rawiri Brown

Profile Image Rawiri Brown Tautai Faleship

Kia ora koutou! Introducing fashion and textile designer Rawiri Brown.

Ngāriki Kaiputahi | Ngāti Raukawa
Cook Island Māori
Tāmaki Makaurau, Aotearoa
IG: @morethread

Having over 15 years working in the fashion industry Rawiri aims to highlight the skilled craft and creative process involved in garment and textile making which is often overlooked and relegated to people’s bedroom floors.
Rawiri is drawn to design and textiles due to its close relationships with evocation, nostalgia, ceremony, tradition, ability to imbue power or authority through textiles’ everyday objects and applications.

Get a glimpse into Rawiri’s creative process as he shares his ‘messy workroom’ and the inspiration behind his capsule collection entitled ‘Happy Endings’.

“I am drawn to the medium’s ability to evoke memories, imbue meaning and help form or alter perceptions and identities with functional objects”

Rawiri Brown

Watch this compilation video of Rawiri’s artistic process! These little snippets draw inspiration from his experience with the current climate.  Entitled ‘Happy Endings’ has an overarching theme of an idealised utopia masking actual reality.  Tongue and check references of his hometown’s logo and what parallels of life was like for himself in 2007’s Global Financial Crisis. He then shares with us the ways in which he experiments with his found objects to make beautiful and sustainable garments.  

We are excited to share Rawiri’s final work! Made as a response to today’s current climate with tongue and cheek references to his hometown Rawiri Brown presents the capsule collection ‘Happy Endings’ created during his Fale-ship residency!


“Employing a hyper saturated colour palette to the point of almost looking garish; incorporating found materials to reinforce narrative and using textiles considered tacky, or cheap to produce a collection with high end finishings and craftsmanship.”

Rawiri Brown

Q+A talanoa with Rawiri & Leafa

Leafa and Rawiri sit down to talk about the processes behind developing a fashion collection.


Leafa: “So can you tell us a bit about your creative process during your Tautai Fale-ship?”
Rawiri: “I love coming up with the ideas and concepts behind a new collection…aesthetically at the moment I like juxtaposition of using already sourced or discarded things that aren’t considered valuable and turning them into something desirable.”

Q+A Talanoa facilitated by:
Performance artist/ Curator/Art Writer/ Director – Olga
Sāmoan | Gafa: Vaimoso/Siumu/Fasito’otai
Hamilton, Aotearoa
IG: @bungaswehr
IG: @olgaartspace 

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