Equestrian designer Kāpiti to be present at New Zealand Fashion Week


Ella Booth, creator of Kapiti.

Kāpiti designer Ella Booth is launching a line of equestrian clothing designed to make the rider feel gorgeous while feeling empowered and beautiful.

A Whitecliffe Fashion Tech student from 2018-2020, Ella used it last year to create her equestrian line which was recently chosen to be featured at New Zealand Fashion Week as part of the Graduate Parade.

“Seven graduates from 2019 and 2020 were selected by a panel of speakers and faculty from Whitecliffe Fashion Tech and then offered the opportunity to participate this year,” said program manager Debra Denny.

A lace show top designed by Ella Bella Equestrian.
A lace show top designed by Ella Bella Equestrian.

“During her studies, Ella was very passionate about art and styling, she was also passionate about her horse and participated in horse shows.

“She merged her two passions and identified a niche market where fashion meets function, delivering a unique design aesthetic aimed at the equestrian community.”

Throughout her studies, Ella’s goal was to combine her two loves, and is delighted that her designs have already received a good response from the Kāpiti horse community, as well as the fashion industry.

“I always wanted to have horses in my life, but I also wanted to be in fashion but they didn’t mix very well.

“My options were to go to town, study fashion and ditch the horses or find a way to combine the two.

“I decided to bring them together and make riding clothes so that I could keep my passion for being around horses and also start a career in fashion.”

At the end of her graduation year, Ella made a collection for the school’s end of year show with three equestrian garments.

One of the first looks in Ella Booth's equestrian line, Ella Bella Equestrian.
One of the first looks in Ella Booth’s equestrian line, Ella Bella Equestrian.

“I made three equestrian clothing for this show and knowing that was what I wanted to do, this year I worked on starting my equestrian clothing sales business.”

By launching her website on September 1, Ella delayed her launch date from her original July 6, her birthday, after being invited to showcase her line at the New Zealand Fashion Week Graduate Parade more late this month.

“Just before the launch I received an email from the director of Whitecliffe asking if I would like to participate in the New Zealand Fashion Week Graduate Parade.

“It’s cool because equestrian clothing has never been to Fashion Week before.

“I’ll be the first designer with an equestrian line to walk the runway at Fashion Week, which is pretty awesome.”

To make the most of the opportunity, Ella pushed back her launch date to work on the fashion show.

“I only wear my things when I’m competing now.

“I do everything myself – from creating patterns to sewing, everything is made to order.

“Once you have purchased it, you will have to wait a few days for it to be made before it is sent to you.

“I already had a lot of interest because Kāpiti is so great at things on horseback.”

Ella tests all of her models herself, making sure they are comfortable to use.

“There aren’t any frilly things to do for horseback riding in New Zealand yet, it’s all plain and simple.

“My designs are different from plain, boring black equestrian outfits.

“They are lace, pretty and elegant.

“I want my clients to come out to a show and hear people say ‘wow, that’s beautiful’.

“I ride all of my designs to make sure that in addition to being stylish, they are comfortable and manageable.”

Ella starts off by offering runway tops, then will offer jackets and pants as her business grows.

Always having a tall and lean figure, Ella knows what it’s like to have clothes that don’t fit well on her.

“When I get started, you can choose a size that I will do next, and eventually I will make custom clothes where you can send your measurements, and I will make clothes specifically to fit.”

Everything is designed and made in Kāpiti at Ella’s home in Otaihanga with clothing available for purchase from September 1 under the name Ella Bella Equestrian.

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