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WOW awards show to stay in Wellington

Published: 11:45AM Monday October 15, 2012 Source: ONE News

The World of Wearable Art (WOW) has confirmed today the awards show will stay in Wellington for nine more years following its first in 2005.

Wellington Council has renewed its partnership with the extravagant fashion show, starting next year to mark the WOW brand's 25th anniversary.

Mayor Celia Wade-Brown said the capital's "compact" and "walkable" surrounds set the ideal stage for WOW.

"WOW makes an enormous contribution to Wellington. Over 47,000 people saw this year's show - 30,000 of who were visitors.

"Most city hotels enjoyed 95% occupancy and many Wellington retailers and restauranteurs reported a significant sales boost," Wade-Brown said.

The latest economic impact study in 2009 estimated $15.1 million was put into the city during show, with $4.9 million of that going to the city's retailers.

Founder Dame Suzie Moncrieff said it was important to keep Wellington as the home of the WOW awards show.

"Wellington has a strong base of creative talent for us to engage with, to ensure our show is world-class.

WOW's inception began in Nelson, where the museum still lies, and the brand has plans to expand globally through exhibitions and showcases.

A third of all entries to this year's show were from abroad.

"With hundreds of WOW entries and showgoers coming from overseas every year, we are very proud of the role WOW is playing in increasing New Zealand's, and Wellington's, reputation for cultural excellence."

This year's awards, held during the last week of September, featured 164 designs which used electronics, taxidermy and human hair, among other materials, to create the garments.

'Delight of Light', by designers from China, was the Supreme Winner for 2012 and was made from plastic and inspired by architecture.

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