STRUTT in Context: The Other Wearable Art Show

It’s impossible to say whether I’m missing something or not but if exhaustive google searches are any indication, STRUTT stands alone as something unique in Canada–in North America, even. Interestingly however, wearable art is a sensation down undah!

New Zealand is home to the World of Wearable Art, a museum in Wellington, that houses the garments from the World of Wearable Art Awards Show–an annual, juried wearable art competition (much like STRUTT), whereby participants from all over the world compete for prizes across several different categories. As you may have gleaned from its global reach, the scale of the competition is huge with nearly 50, 000 people flocking to Wellington for the festivities each September.

Some entries from previous years:


Hide in My Bone Shadow, Marjolein van der Wal
Image courtesy of


Persephone’s Descent, Stuart Johnson
Image courtesy of


When Brunel met Chanel, Steve Brown, 2011
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Superminx, Simon Hames
Image courtesy of


The Purpose, Kolia Co
Image courtesy of

The designs are judged partly on construction and the quality of the pieces is obvious but I think STRUTT stacks up. What do you think?



Like STRUTT, WOW had humble beginnings with just over 200 people sloshing through mud to watch the inaugural 1987 exhibition in a field from under a makeshift tent to shield them from the rain. The show was a success however, and creator, Suzie Moncrieff, “proved that an emotionally adventurous theatrical show for these wearable artworks would be far more exciting than the ‘catwalk strut’ style of typical fashion parades.”

In the years since, WOW has experienced tremendous growth and is now a bonafide Wellington tourist attraction. The parallels between the two shows (which interestingly sandwich the better part of the globe) and the growth that STRUTT has already experienced make me wonder what it will look like after another 12 years in the business of embodied art?

I look forward to what the future holds for STRUTT–starting this Saturday night. See you there!