Liam Laura & Me

When two people meet, there can be a spark that results in a friendship stretching across continents. This is the story of Liam designer Emily Miller-Sharma and her long-time friend Laura Taylor, model and stylist in Laura & Me. The two met in high school after quickly realising their common penchant for art and design, and began creating work together. Soon after, Laura moved back to Brazil, becoming a musician, art director, and now creative director. Their two paths met and separated, but never lost touch. Both women have pursued creative careers, living parallel lives in different continents. Both women are happily messy in their living spaces, a trait that speaks to the brilliant chaos that surrounds their creative work. They remained in steady admiration of each other, and now with Laura’s brief return to New Zealand, the two work together again through Liam’s new collection, Laura & Me.

For this collection, Miller-Sharma was after a sense of harmony through discord – unlikely yet delightful pairings in colour, texture, and silhouette. Between the simple cuts and easy-to-wear fabrications, Laura & Me brings a refreshing modernity.

Green is the primary hue in this collection, explored in shades of cucumber, sage and moss. Colour juxtapositions in new combinations are also explored: rust and jacaranda, ivory and jade, navy and bottle green. Yet the crescendo in this collection is the stand-out Watercolour print, hallucinogenic in its saturated colour and abstracted broad strokes. It is an expression of confidence, illuminated by the dialled-up volume in both Miller-Sharma and Taylor’s lives.

Through styling, the juxtaposition continues: the Maas Button-up with its slubby texture can be paired with the slip-like Nirvana Skirt, or the Maas tweed Blazer layered over the Laura Cowl Neck dress. The mercerized cotton Thankyou pieces are slinky and light; the knit tank, t-shirt and skirt make easy layering options. And when the days get colder, the Maas Coat in brilliant green is a stand-out option for tonal ensembles.

And yet some of the strongest statements are inspired by Thirties eveningwear; the references made daywear-appropriate by Miller-Sharma. Patternmaking and exploration of the bias grounds two key silhouettes. The Low Tide pieces begin as gentle, shoulder flounces in the Low Tide Gown and Camisole, then develop into cross-over gathers at the bust in the Low Tide Knit Dress. Through panelling, the Laura Gown explores a square neckline and the bias; the matching Laura Camisole is a sleek day-time alternative. These silhouettes are all imprinted with Liam’s signature – making a statement while remaining easy to wear.

Laura & Me comes together in a chorus of brilliant colour and texture. It conveys the idea of unlikely pairings creating something beautiful, encouraging a new playfulness with clothes. Invest wisely and wear it however you like, anywhere and with anything. It’s in the chance encounters and reconnections that the magic happens.

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