Couture Comes Home for Christmas

Couture comes home for Christmas – Cecilia Kang brings the catwalk to a dementia care home.
Fashion is art – and art is about life. For people with dementia, life can become more limited, with fewer creative outlets. This is often the case for those living in care hospitals – and especially during the COVID-19 pandemic.
That’s why Cecilia Kang Couture is taking the catwalk to a dementia care unit – Auckland’s Awanui Rest Home for a private show on December 23rd.
Designer Cecilia Kang and friend Courtney Armour are fashion industry devotees, but Courtney’s grandmother’s dementia diagnosis in 2017, has seen her unable to attend shows.
“I’m a trans woman and Courtney and I have shared our identity issues over the years, our passion for textiles, fashion, design and culture,” says Kang. “Courtney loved walking, bringing garments to life, talking about fashion and now this is so much harder for her.”
“A Mind for Music, an Eye for Style”
Courtney and her mother Fiona Armour have worked alongside Kang to present the A look for the Awanui Home runway and Haute Couture collection. “Black swan vs White swan: Covid 19 edition finding love and hope”. says Kang. Sabrina Begum, Claudia Samaniego, Somaira Kalim & Sariah Anne will be doing the hair & make up for Cecilia Kang Couture show.
Courtney Armour and Kang have worked together before – and COURTNEY says Kang’s gowns are masterful and full of class and glamour. Creating beauty and high end couture fashion says Courtney Armour.
People love music, style, and entertainment, it’s part of who we are, says Kang. “With this show, we wanted to bring a social event back into loved ones’ lives. Something that’s both normal and exciting – sharing music and fashion is part of family life. If you’re living in a care home, you don’t always get to do this, so we thought: Let’s take the show to them!”
Almost 70,000 Kiwis have dementia, with that number expected to almost triple by 2050. One of the leading causes of death globally, dementia is the term for a range of neurological conditions including Alzheimer’s disease.
“With dementia, life can become smaller, scary, more confusing,” said Kang. “People lose touch with the creative passions that used to bring them happiness and meaning.”
The impact the condition has on whānau / families is significant, there is a big emotional toll on the person experiencing the disease and their loved ones, with family members often leaving work to care for relatives with dementia. This has proved especially challenging during this year’s COVID-19 lockdowns – and Christmas is often a difficult time.
“This show Black swan vs White swan: Covid 19 edition finding love and hope at Awanui Rest Home is all about supporting people with dementia and bringing joy, normality, and entertainment into their lives!” said Kang.
“A mind for music, an eye for style” – Cecilia Kang & Courtney Armour present the Cecilia Kang Couture Collection at a special private show at Awanui Rest Home 2:30pm , Wednesday 23 December, Awanui Rest Home, Mt Wellington.