Supporting our customers during the Coronavirus read more

The World of WearableArt® Awards Show

The World of WearableArt Logo

The World of WearableArt®, known as WOW®, is a renowned international design competition that attracts hundreds of entries from all over the world. Finalists compete for over $165,000 in prize money plus internships with leading creative companies such as Weta Workshop.

Every year the event is held in Wellington and this year the Awards Show will be on in the capital from 22 September right through until the 9 October at the TSB Bank Arena, Queens Wharf, Wellington. This is one of New Zealand’s biggest cultural success stories of the last 50 years – taking the human body as the canvass and encouraging people to design works of art that fit around different body types. This hugely successful event has been running since 1987 and will this year celebrate its 28th season – we are already excited for the big 3-0.

Welcome to Wellington

The World of WearableArt® is a fantastic showcase of international design
The World of WearableArt® is a fantastic showcase of international design

The event has grown a little since the early days – the first event was attended by around 200 people in a community hall in Nelson. Since then, things have come quite a way. In 2005, the event was moved to Wellington to allow for more people to attend and last year’s event was attended by over 55,000 people over the two weeks that the show runs for. People come from far and wide to witness the magnificent pieces of art on display and the event welcomes designers from all around New Zealand as well as international designers from the UK, USA, Australia, India, Thailand, Israel, Sweden, Fiji, Canada, Germany to name but a few.

What all this means for Wellington is that the place is absolutely buzzing during the two weeks of The World of WearableArt®, with bars and restaurants packed out and a fantastic vibe in the city as creatives descend on the capital to enjoy the show and to party.

The World of WearableArt® Competition

There are some weird and wonderful pieces of art on display at The World of WearableArt®
There are some weird and wonderful pieces of art on display at The World of WearableArt®

One of the biggest factors that attracts so many entries and so many designers from around the world to little old New Zealand is The World of WearableArt® Competition which has encouraged an explosion of creative activity, inspiring designers from a wide range of backgrounds including art, fashion, textile and industrial design, jewellery, architecture, law and home making, to name a few.

WOW® gives entrants freedom of expression without the constraints of commercialism it encourages lateral, original thinking and provides the opportunity to be innovative and inventive. That’s what makes the competition so exciting and innovative and that’s what keep the people coming back year after year as there is always something new to see.

WOW® Charities of Choice

As well as offering up a great opportunity for designers from around the world to showcase their work, the WOW® event also raises a lot of money for charity. This year’s chosen charities are Breast Cancer Cure, Purple Cake Day and the Neonatal Trust. By supporting this fantastic event, you are also helping to support these great New Zealand charities so make sure you get yourself down to Wellington to this year’s WOW® Award Show if you have never been here before.

Booking your accommodation

We do still have limited accommodation left at the Willis Wellington Hotel throughout the two weeks of the WOW® Show and we do have some great winter warmer special offers on during certain dates, particularly during the mid-week shows. Check online today and get yourself a great hotel deal and come and visit us in Wellington – it’s a great time to visit the capital and you will be supporting a fantastic event as well as seeing an amazing show.

To find out more about The World of WearableArt® Awards Show, visit the website for details of the exhibitions, how to enter and where to buy your tickets. We look forward to welcoming you to Wellington!


Sign up to our newsletter