Celebrated female artists design new T-shirt range to raise funds for families in need.
To spread kindness to Kiwis in need, three celebrated wahine Māori artists have designed a range of limited-edition t-shirts to support New Zealand charity Kindness Collective during the Christmas period.
The ‘Wear Kindness’ campaign features artists Lissy Cole, Kiri Nathan, and Māori Mermaid and are available for purchase from 5 October – 20 November, with proceeds from the sale of the t-shirts going towards The Christmas Joy Store, Aotearoa’s first social toy and treat store, run by the Kindness Collective which is back for a second year in 2022.
The Christmas Joy Store gives parents and caregivers supported by Social Services, Women’s Refuge groups, New Zealand Police and Government agencies, the opportunity to shop and choose gifts they know their children will love, off the shelves for free.
Sarah Page, Founder and Chief Executive of the Kindness Collective says, “For families living in poverty or who are rebuilding their lives from illness or family violence, Christmas isn’t always a time of joy. Every child deserves a magical Christmas, and everyone deserves the dignity of choice, so we are pleased to be bringing the Christmas Joy Store back for another year.
“Last year’s Joy Store saw over 24,000 presents provided for kids in need and this year we need to double our impact. We’re excited to have collaborated with these incredible artists and designers who believe in our mission, to help us reach this goal.
“The ‘Wear Kindness’ campaign gives kiwis the opportunity to wear a heart-felt piece of art and donate to those in need. The tees feature stunning designs and we hope people around the country will wear them proudly and consider buying a couple as Christmas gifts for friends or loved ones.”
About the artists:
Over the past eight years, husband and wife duo, Lissy and Rudi Robinson-Cole, have been using their creative energies to explore mātauranga Māori and their personal whakapapa through crocheted sculptural forms. Bringing together bright, neon colours and traditional toi whakairo shapes, their mahi offers a new way of understanding the importance of joy and aroha within te ao Māori.
Speaking about their involvement, Lissy and Ruddy Robinson-Cole commented, “our inspiration for the design of ‘Wear Kindness’ as with all our designs is to honour the gifts we’ve been given and to bring a deep aroha to our world through our creativity.
“The heart which is centred and lifted up by angel wings represents the connection to our Tūpuna and the path of aroha they’ve laid down for us to follow. Joy is what lifts our hearts to live with purpose and peace.”
Co-founder of the self-named fashion brand KIRI NATHAN, and founder of Kahui Collective, Kiri embodies identity and inclusivity.
Inspired by Aotearoa New Zealand and Te Ao Māori, the company is built on tradition, culture, unique designs, integrity, and a clear company vision. Kiri has received multiple awards for excellence and was awarded a New Zealand Order of Merit for services to Māori and the fashion Industry in the 2020 Queen’s Birthday honours.
Talking about her inspiration for the Kind Tee, Kiri says, “the foundation of kindness to me is how one person shows manaaki (support, care for, respect) to another person, when one wraps their korowai of love, kindness and protection around another, it is the greatest gift”.
Jessica Hinerangi Thompson- Carr (Māori Mermaid) creates art to embrace and capture her endless journey into the reclamation of her māoritanga. With a range of knowledge, Jessica currently works as an artist, poet, and writer.
“The inspiration behind this piece was to depict kindness in the form that I see it,” said Jessica.
“I see our mothers and what they selflessly give, and the natural world in which humans have the ability to choose kindness over anything else. I wanted to draw something gentle and simple for this piece, hoping to evoke some warmth through the illustration”.
The Kindness Collective limited edition ‘Wear Kindness’ t-shirt collection will be available to purchase until 20 November from The Kindness Collective at RRP $50 and will be delivered in time for Christmas. Profits from every t-shirt sale will be donated to the Kindness Collective to help run the Christmas Joy Store.